Perfection to Rachel was everything. Being the perfect mother with the perfect family and living in the idyllic country cottage and two years ago she was pretty much there. And it was two years ago today she stood in St Mary’s church next to Lucy. Rachel had inherited her father’s genes, a head taller than her younger sister Lucy, with her blue eyes and model looks was the envy of many. Her blonde hair sat perfectly shoulder length on the black jacket that formed part of her suit, not the most expensive of suits but Rachel could wear a potato sack and look stylish. She had told herself today to be strong and control her emotions. Mainly for Daniel and Hayley to protect them from further upset in seeing their mother crying but it was also Rachel’s way of never showing weakness in public. Dave her husband would be proud as the brown dark oak casket covered with the Union Jack and military medals moved towards the furnace.
Recent weeks had been hell yet Rachel still managed to organise most of the arrangements for the funeral. Tomorrow was going to be the day to get her life back together. There was no choice she had to be there for her children. She would be the one they could lean on, cry to and talk to when needed. It had been a bad few years losing her parents in recent years and now the tragic premature death of Dave had shocked her to the core. She knew as everyone else she was a fighter and would deal with whatever this world threw at her.
Rachel poured another glass of vodka and placed the near empty bottle on the mortgage arrears letter that had been sitting on the dining room table for the last week. Pulling her thumb and fingers around the glass she stared at the noticeable ridges running vertically down her discoloured fingernails. Her inner voice repeatedly shouted at her she had failed her children and how they would be better off with Auntie Lucy who finally proved she was the stronger one. It was only a matter of time before the house would be gone. What kind of life would it be for Daniel and Hayley? A smile surfaced as she thought of the day Daniel was born she pictured Dave and her joking how before long he would be packing his bags and going to university. The smile replaced with tears that she tried to repair with another gulp of the vodka and thoughts focused on how Daniel will be going nowhere without money. Accepting the request from the bottle not to be wasted poured the last drops into her glass and raised to her chapped lips took a mouthful so large that extra effort and concentration to swallow was required.
Looking at the dust and cobweb covered wooden beams she hooked the white power extension cable over the top pushing it through a small gap between the beam and the ceiling. Tying a knot, she climbed onto a chair, looped it over to create the noose she fed her head through. With her voice weak and shaking she whispered
‘It’s the only way. It’s for the best’ and devoid of any emotion kicked the chair from beneath her.