Virginia smiled, as she saw her son beaming with excitement. Going to the ranch was Trevor’s idea. He had wanted to get out of the city for so long and this was a perfect weekend to do so. He had even managed to get Tommy all thrilled about it. So it had to be an amazing time.
It was a three-hour drive up to the ranch. Tommy was wide-eyed and gleaming all throughout the scenic route. There was no way he was going to sleep this one out!
As the car approached the driveway, Hector and Elisa emerged from inside the large wooden doors of the house and waved, happily strolling towards them. They hadn’t seen them for years and it could get lonely up there.
Trevor got out of the car and took a deep breath, inhaling the beauty of the countryside and the pureness of the air. There was just something different in the atmosphere there.
But Virginia felt differently. She shivered as the breeze hit her, as if something eerie had brushed against her. She had never been to the ranch before, but she could see the sparkle in Trevor’s eyes whenever he talked about it, and just couldn’t say no. Particularly, when Tommy also lit up in the prospect of visiting a ranch.
But there was something strange there. Something that just didn’t seem right. For now, she decided to ignore it. It was going to be a fun weekend. And nothing was going to spoil that.
After a delicious lunch with Hector and Elisa, Virginia went for a stroll down the lake with Tommy, as Trevor inspected his childhood dwellings and the changes that had occurred all these years. The stables were spotless, and all the animals were superbly taken care of. The ranch was in good hands and being there transmitted a feeling of calm, tranquility and peace. All of which were absent in a big city.
The sunset was majestic. And as the lake gulped up the last ray, Tommy took hold of his mother’s hand and made their way back up to the house.
Elisa had prepared a luscious dinner out on the porch, where the only sounds heard were the nightingales singing and the river flowing melodically along.
Night came before anyone even realized what time it was, and soon they were all sound asleep in the most comfortable beds they had ever experienced.
But, in the pitch black of the night, that serenity was disturbed by a deafening shot. A shot that felt like a piercing in the ears, as if a thousand plates were broken all at once, smashed onto a marble floor.
Trevor sprung up in fright. A strange feeling had overwhelmed him. He felt his way into the hall, desperately trying to find a light switch. When he finally did, he felt the electric currents flow into his veins. Cold sweat trickled down his back as light flooded the room. His heart was pacing as if he had just sprinted there as fast as he could. His mouth was dry and he felt a lump in his throat. But no matter how hard he tried in the years to come, nothing would ever erase from his mind the sight he witnessed before him at that very moment.
Virginia lay there half-naked in a pool of her own blood. Rigid. Empty. Lifeless.