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The single shot pistol barely makes any noise as she places it upon the table, but the firearm silences the room near instantly, wide eyes land on it then the woman who brought it to dinner. “What is that for, dear sister?” the raven hair woman asks, giggling nervously as her sister shrugs.

“I may shoot the duke.” The man sitting next to the armed woman pales and looks at his wife, smiling sweetly while nervous laughs quietly rise up from the uneasy gathering.

“Oh,” her sister looks to her husband “I can’t see why you would say something like that, sister.”

“Can’t you?” The duke looks to his wife, heart thundering in his chest. “He is the most barbaric man I have ever suffered. Day in and day out I am armed, ready to defend myself from one of his rages. Wouldn’t it be easier to do away with him entirely?”

“I, well…” another delicate, nervous laugh rises from the raven haired woman.

“That is enough.” The duke wipes his face clean and rises from the table. “I have suffered you enough. I’ll not spend another moment in this house with you.”

“You’ve suffered?” The woman shoots up just as quickly as her husband. “How can you say that? How can you say you’ve suffered when I have spent nights awake, too scared to sleep?”

“Too scared to sleep?” The man bellows “Too scared to sleep! Woman I have done nothing to harm you in all our time together! I have granted you everything you have desired and now, now you threaten to shoot me in my own home!”

“Nothing to harm me?” The woman screeched, the guests shared uneasy looks “Nothing to harm me? You’re constant drinking is enough to harm me!”

“Constant drink- No. No. I’m done. I bid you all good night as I’ll not suffer this raving lunatic a moment longer. Good night all.” he spins on his heels and marches toward the grand entrance.

“Lunatic?” the woman questioned, anger tinting her voice. “You’re calling me a lunatic?” Her hand reaches back, slender fingers finding the grip of her pistol “How dare you dishonor me like that! And before our friends!” She lifted the gun and brought it up, aiming down the site. “You can’t treat me like this I am your wife!”

“Nellie!” Her sister shoots up, hand reaching over the table for her sister “Nellie what are you doing!”

“Stay back! All of you!” The woman wretches away and and pulls the hammer back “You can’t dishonor me like this! You will not leave me like this!”

“Nellie, Nellie darling-” The duke turns to face his wife and reaches for her, his deep voice tinted with fear and panic.

“Stay where you are!” He freezes. “This is my dream marriage! You will not destroy it!” Her finger wraps around the trigger, slowly the pressure mounts against the metal.

“Nellie, my love, don’t do this. We will make this work. I-I won’t leave, please Nellie.”

“Be quiet! Just stop talking!” She motions wildly with the pistol “Every time you open your mouth nothing but lies come forth!”

“Nellie,” Her sister attempts again

“I said stop talking!” She turns and aims for her own sister. The woman falls silent and shies away from the weapon being brandished at her. The duke, while his wife is distracted, rushes toward her, intent of ripping the weapon away; but the woman is quick and turns the gun back on him, firing the solitary shot into his chest. “I told you to stop!”

“Nellie, what… What have you done!” Her sister’s voice cuts through the still air, shattered a moment ago by the gun shot and screaming. The woman blinks and seemingly comes back to the world around her throwing the gun away and taking a step back.

“No. NO! James! James I’m so sorry!” She flings herself upon him screaming and sobbing into his bloodied dinner coat while the many guests bustle about, calling upon servants to fetch the doctor and hurrying the sobbing woman out of the room away from her mortally wounded husband barely clinging to life.

“Nell… Nellie… my wife… where…” The duke fights for air as his sister-in-law hushes him and a maid presses a rag to his chest in an attempt to stop the bleeding. “Take care of her…. Take care of Nellie…” His breathing is pained and soon he lets out a final breathe, everything relaxing as his soul slips away from its mortal prison.

For three years after this incident Nellie lived in the massive house, alone with only one servant to tend to her every need, when the money ran out though she was forced to sell the property and move into a small farm house outside of her small home town. For ten years she lived there in seclusion with only her loyal servant and six cats to keep her company, but finally the reeking stench of the cats and odd hours being kept by the once respectable woman prompted the townspeople to call upon the ward. Thirteen years after her husbands murder at her hands the door to her small farmhouse was forced open by the men in white coats and the murderess was dragged from the building kick and screaming, she was brought to a hospital for the criminally insane and there she lived out the rest of long life dying at age 94 after residing there for 48 years.

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