Winifred had always been strange. She was perpetually distant, a little discombobulated even, as if focused on something far beyond our limited pleasantries exchanged over the garden hedge. She was lost in a tiny world contained within her head and she was consumed by an incessant love for her sickly husband, Edgar. A brush of his pale hand could scatter stars through her eyes and blush pink through her cheeks. She loved him absolutely, his illness rendered irrelevant by her adoration.
She had always been strange, but she became even stranger when she started to carry the suitcase. It was a few days after Edgar had finally passed away, and suddenly it was there. The suitcase was squat, and brown, and it was forever clasped in her hands, her arms folded around it in a protective embrace. Wherever she went she brought the suitcase, with saint-like devotion, never once letting it out of her sight. I asked after it on multiple occasions but she just smiled her distant smile and went back inside, fetching the suitcase from its position on the lawn.
I have always been inquisitive and so I just couldn't help myself. I kept wondering, trying to fathom what could be so important that she would insist on taking it everywhere. I dreamt of hidden treasures and long lost love letters. So when we were conversing in our separate gardens and she disappeared inside to answer the phone, leaving the suitcase perched squatly on the doorstep, I couldn't resist. I stole furtively over to the suitcase, and opened it.
As the suitcase creaked open, a cry escaped my lips. A foul stench rose from the contents as I gazed into the bulging eyes of Edgar's severed head, the suitcase his squat, brown coffin.