Hadwin’s Crazed Eyes (flash fiction)

Here’s a little piece of flash fiction about a graverobbing gone wrong. Let me know what you think!

The rain poured down, and Cyril was freezing and soaked. They continued shoveling the mud off the grave, watching for guards.

“Jesus Christ, Hadwin,” he said. “Let’s get outta here. This isn’t worth it. We’re gonna catch god-damned pneumonia out here.”

Hadwin stuck his shovel into the mud, scooping out a considerable bit. “No way. I’m telling you – this is a big score. This old lady was buried with her entire jewelry collection. We’re talkin’ big bucks here.”

“Be that as it may,” Cyril replied. “But I don’t care. I’m leaving.”

Hadwin grabbed him. “No, you’re not.”

They’d been doing occasional graverobbing for a while now, lucky to never have been caught. Most of the time, the pickings were slim. But this time, Hadwin swore to him that he had intel of a big score.

“You thinking of ratting on me?” Hadwin looked pissed.

“What? Of course not. It’s just, it’s raining cats and dogs, and this is a bad idea. We’re gonna leave a mess, and we’re gonna get caught. Let’s just leave.”

“We can’t. And you won’t.” Hadwin grabbed him again by the collar, and Cyril didn’t like that so much. Hadwin had a crazed look in his eyes, between the strands of wet, brown hair. It was a murderous look.

“You’re freaking me out, dude,” Cyril said. “Let go.”

“Help dig this grave. Now!”

Cyril pushed him, and Hadwin slipped in the mud. “Don’t talk to me like that, man. We’re partners. And I’m going home.”

Then he saw it – the lamplight above shone off the pocket knife Hadwin gripped as he got up out of the mud. Cyril panicked, grabbed his shovel.

“I said I’m going home!”

Cyril cracked his friend’s skull with one mighty swing, and the man thumped in the mud. He panicked, shook him, tried to wake him up. But Hadwin would not wake up; he was dead. Blood mixed with mud. The rain continued to fall, and Cyril stood there shocked at his crime.

He stayed there for about an hour, digging up the grave. But instead of unearthing the coffin, he tossed Hadwin’s lifeless body in the hole, and then he shoveled the mud onto it. He took the shovels and tools with him, and he’s not told a soul about that night three months ago.

But every time he passes the graveyard, he sees Hadwin’s crazed eyes gleaming like balls of flames, and he pictures his friend’s crushed skull, and he knows deep down, he won’t be able to hold this secret forever.

The End

8 thoughts on “Hadwin’s Crazed Eyes (flash fiction)

  1. Dave Williams May 29, 2021 / 4:31 pm

    When you mentioned the graverobbing gone wrong, I immediately thought of someone catching the graverobbers in the act. But your story goes in a much more interesting direction. It had me wondering about the relationship that these two guys used to have. Cool story.

    • Nick Pipitone May 29, 2021 / 8:55 pm

      Thanks Dave! I researched graverobbing for another story before. Not sure if people still do it, but it was a big problem in the 19th century. It has always fascinated me for some weird, morbid reason.

  2. Terveen Gill June 24, 2021 / 8:32 am

    This must be making him insane. Guilt and secrets don’t mix well. Well written! 🙂

    • Nick Pipitone June 24, 2021 / 8:39 am

      Thank you! I may have been subconsciously inspired by Poe’s “Tell-Tale Heart.” 🙂

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