January 3rd, 2020

through the times

LJI S10 - doing a dark kindness

Sometimes, someone is so terrible and so evil that by killing them, you're doing the rest of the world a kindness.

That's why we done what we done.

Agnes was a good woman and a good mother. She was also a good wife. The problem was that she chose to be with a man who was pure evil down to his core. If there was any goodness in Henry, God knows we never saw it.

The night she was killed, she'd gotten herself all prettied up and went out to a dance in town. Henry wasn't too happy about this; so you can imagine the fight they had before she left the house that night. He never hit her anywhere that decent folks could see, though. And even if he had, they called it home correction then and nobody raised an eyebrow to it.

She came back a few hours later from that dance, all red cheeked and sparkling through and through. Anyone who had seen her would have known she was deep in the throes of joy. She needed that sort of thing in her life, you see.

Henry had just gotten angrier and angrier while she was gone, and it built up inside him to a fierce climax. So when she looked him square in the eye and said she was done with him, that was the moment that everything changed. He gave her the backhand then and knocked out some of her teeth.

He got up from his chair and he went out back around the house for the ax. I guess she knew that she wasn't going to be able to outrun him, but she tried.

It didn't do any good, though. He hit her with the ax so many times that you couldn't even tell what she looked like. There was nothing left. Her pretty dancin dress was covered in blood and bone and her beautiful face was a pulpy mess.

The sheriff come and arrest him. Ol' Miller sobbed like a baby for poor Aggie after they threw Henry in the hoosegow. Wish they'd lynched his sorry behind or hung him in the town square. No one would have said he didn't deserve it. He deserved that, and he even deserved worse.

God bless it, it took her nigh fifty hours to die. She was in agony the whole time, you know it. The doctor tried what he could to ease some of her suffering but it just wasn't enough. How you can do that to a human being is something that I will never be able to understand as long as I live.

Meanwhile, Henry done found himself a crowbar and broke out of the jail. What he didn't factor in was how all of Aggie's brothers was waiting outside the jail and they was more than ready to do to him what he done to her.

And do that they did.

They killed him almost immediately. He couldn't get far. He tried to run but it didn't do a lick of good. All of those men took turns punishing him for what he did. Then when they killed him, they chopped off his arms and his head with the ax.

Threw 'im in one of those old mines. You know what it's like up there near Wallace, don't you? Of course you do. That area's full of all those old mining towns. Didn't think his body would ever see the light of day again.

Sure enough, it didn't happen for the better part of sixty years. That ol' forensics fellow who was looking at Loveless's corpse thought he'd been killed recently. Guess that ol' mine was good at preserving his body. Then twelve years after that, some little girl walking home from school found his arm.

You say you brought me here to do a DNA test to prove that that corpse is the earthly remains of that goddamned murdering sumbitch Loveless. I'm the only relation that's left. Rest of em all died or moved away. I'll do that so you can get the answers you been looking for, for all this time.

Sometimes bad things happen to good people.

Sometimes good things happen to bad people.

And sometimes, the worst kind of bad people get exactly what they deserve.

I've done a lot of things in my life I regret, but helping to kill that monster who helped create me was not one.

I recently read an article about an one hundred year old headless corpse being identified through a DNA test. The man, Henry Lawless, brutally murdered his common law wife, Agnes, with an ax. For all extents and purposes, he was a career criminal with multiple aliases It took Agnes fifty hours of agony to finally die. After reading that, I knew I had to take a little creative license and write about Loveless for my first Open Topic of this season. - CMW