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The Delivery - the last part of our serial

Updated: Mar 2, 2023

We've been taking turns writing a story. The prompt we took was:

"Flowers came to my house every other Monday exactly at 1 o’clock"

We've had a lot of fun writing this story, each one of us picking up where the last one finished. Joe got the hardest job of concluding the story.

Part Seven

By Joe de Souza

The Last Episode

The Calla lilies had stopped being delivered a few months ago. I was in limbo. On the one hand, I was mightily relieved and, on the other, disturbed. I had spent hours thinking, watching and expecting; trying to find any clue who had been sending them at precisely one o’clock and why had they stopped. The trip to Bertie Blooms, the florist, had drawn a blank. It seems this secret admirer was as shrouded in mystery as the flowers. Yet more ominous, the last delivery of flowers was wrapped in a black ribbon, signifying death. That’s when I had reported it to the police and that’s when the flowers had stopped, suddenly. The final Lilly was like a threat, veiled in a black ribbon.

With new footage now available, the police had asked me to attend the local station. At least they may have some idea who was sending the Calla Lilies, including the one wrapped in the ribbon.

I am sure that I had driven my neighbour to distraction with my regular visits. His CCTV footage had become a fascination for me. I wondered if I should take another look, especially to look for the mysterious Audi, that was always lurking at about the same time of the delivery, and still was. So, before I went off to the police station I called in on my neighbour. I rang on his door.

“Hi, it’s me. Have you got a mo?”

“Yes, of course. Come in. How can I help?” we’ve got used to each other. He thinks I’m as weird as I think he is.

“I was just on my way to the police station. They said that they had found identified new footage that they would like me to see.”

“That’ll be the last recording I sent.”

“Really? Can we have a look at it?”

And so we looked and looked and finally, I spotted an image of someone driving the Audi that I knew very well when he got out of his car; I noticed the way he walked, moved, everything; it was my ex-husband, Terrence. Driving in a new car that I hadn’t recognised.

This was a shock. All those lilies, for all that time. Why was he doing this to me? Our separation had been perfectly friendly. The strange behaviour that had taken place was mystifying. He was taking the flowers from my doorstep, dumping them in the boot of his car and then driving off. He had been doing this for a couple of months. That explained the absence of flowers over that time.

Our separation was friendly. A clean break. We had no contact. Before I head to the police station, I gather my thoughts about the strange behaviour of my ex. I know Terrence found the end of our relationship hard to take. So much so, he was secretly romancing me with flowers in the hope of a reunion. He would check that they had delivered the flowers. This continued for a while, but when there was no response from me, he sent the flowers wrapped menacingly in a black ribbon. This must have signified the end to our relationship in his mind. A kind of death. But he couldn’t face cancelling the flower order with Betty Blooms, so instead, he waited for the delivery, took them from my doorstep and took them home with him. That is why the mysterious Audi could still be seen, even two months after I received my last doorstep delivery of the flowers.

Who knows whether it was just the stress of us breaking up, but something triggered a nervous breakdown. Terrence had become deluded, obsessive, and confused. He had collected a huge number of Calla lilies from my doorstep and filled his home with them; spending hours amongst the colossal pile of rotting flowers. Like a child surrounded by his favourite blanket and toys.

The Coroner will decide whether it was by accident or deliberate that some of these poisonous plants were in his mouth and throat, causing the swelling that fatally constricted his airway. Or, perhaps, that Terrence was suffocated by his love for me.

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