Accidental Carnage



Original poster
"H-honey?" A soft timid voice vocalized a question.

Her slender body walked towards an immobilized body on the floor. Once pristine white dress shirt had blood oozed out of inconspicuous open flesh. The darkened shade of red began to form a pool of blood surrounding the multiple stab wounds. His lips moved no more nor did his eyes blinked anymore. Mariana lowered her body to the ground where her knee's fell to the floor. Her fingertips touched the open flesh, dark crimson stained her once pristine ivory skin. The blood was warm and fresh the pungent smell of iron filled the kitchen room. There she was on her knee's unsure what to do. Those doelarge pale hazel eyes looked to the left, slowly. A kitchen knife tarnished by the blood laid next to her once alive husband's body. She knew what she had done. Her only cherished memory of her husband was his contemptuous voice, cold dead brown eyes, and sinister smile. The sudden attacks, all the harm and damage he had caused, but there was no reason why he had to die.

She pushed her body upward, on her feet she ran upstairs to her bedroom. With a small back, she shoved in all the clothes she could carry, brought along a phone, a beloved picture of the two happy, and a roll of a surfeit amount of money. Once she was set she returned back to her kitchen, looked down at her husband's dead body. "You didn't deserve to die. It should've been me."

The house was left dark without a light on. She inserted the car keys into the ignition and left the house without looking back. She needed to run away, she needed to leave, the house was no longer safe. Her leg was twitching on the gas. On a red light she stopped the car for a moment, took hold of a black hair band on her wrist and tied her curly blonde hair into a pony-tail. Mariana looked back on the road with names of people she knew on her mind. The list of numerous of people, no one would understand. The people she knew currently were all rectitudes of the world -- all the sweethearts she seemed to attract spoke solely about their marriage and dumb ass children. There was no other person till a name popped up on her contacts. She tucked a strand of loose hair behind her ear looked at the name closely.

"Mildred..." She muttered softly. Mariana remembered bumping into her good friend Mildred in the streets where the small shops and cafe's were lined up. It was a pleasant surprise and an anomaly. She never took Mildred as the type to wander there, but, it didn't matter. She only exchanged a few words at the sudden encounter, yet she trusted the woman for a zany rationale. With a quick turn of her car keys and a swift turn of the steering wheel, Mariana headed her way to a crummy apartment in the worst part of town.

The night was still young, it barely hit twelve, it was relieving -- it meant she had enough time to catch up to Mildred. Away from the murder scene brought her heartbeat race much lower than it was before, her leg stopped shaking, but her hand began to twitch. There was no debatable notion floating within her intellect. Her eyes glanced down on her phone, where she typed down Mildred's address. There weren't much to where Mildred lived. Mariana's friends warned her numerous of times to never step foot within that area. It was a laughable warning, but, she would always put on a stoic countenance in front of them -- just to keep the friendship alive.

At the sight of brick apartment buildings with graffiti, homeless people taking shelter against the walls, and loud music from drug addicts; she was aware of where she was. Her eyes were focused on the numbers on the apartments, to catch a specific pattern of numbers. Until a red brick apartment with a large graffiti art of a gang sign had the specific numbers, "Two, seven, five..." The numbers matched. Mariana parked on the curb and began to walk into the apartment. She was lucky enough to catch a person entering the apartment, to deter herself from calling from the box. Into the elevator she went, pushed the number seven button. The elevator stopped on the seventh floor. The inside was worse than the out, Mariana couldn't handle being within the apartment. She crossed her arms in a defensive manner, gingerly approaching Mildred's apartment door.

Pale hazel eyes caused her to stop in front of a beige painted door with the apartment number plaque on the top. Before knocking she took in a deep breath. With fingers curled into a fist and she knocked on the door.

"Mildred?" Her soft timid voice called out.​
Midnight, exactly zero hundred hours and the birth of a new day. Mildred traced the moon’s shape in violet crayon on her window. The imperfect circle of a nearly full waxing moon now joined the other esoteric characters previously scrawled there. She was certain something was to begin; she had read it in her cards a month before. Mildred couldn’t ignore three aces as coincidence. Then again, Mildred never believed anything was coincidence. There was meaning in every detail, even if at times she made it up.

Regardless, change was coming. After so many years of stagnation, Mildred could feel it like a vibration of potential energy. She had spent years in patience. How much longer did she have to wait? The limitations of the mortal world couldn’t obviate Mildred’s fate. She wasn’t like others of her species. Why were the realms beyond forsaking her? Would they test her until senescence?

Mildred breathed deeply, trying to maintain her equanimity. Things would change. She assured herself, creating a mantra of those words in her head. And like a sign from the omniscient spirits, there came a knock, three succinct raps on Mildred’s apartment door. This was her moment. It had to be. Unless it was the old woman upstairs complaining about the smell coming from her vents again. Then it was a false alarm because Mildred wasn’t going to stop burning incense for some bat-shit woman above her.

Trying not to rush, feigning disinterest, Mildred clambered over the disarray on her bedroom floor and stumbled into the adjoining hall. Straightening her clothes, she entered her living room and then finally reached the door. Who she found on the other side left her nonplussed.

“Mariana?” Mildred breathed. She considered letting her in, but after glancing the coffee table overflowing with refuse, rot, and unwashed dishes she was uncertain. “What are you doing here.” She asked instead.
The soft creaking indicated something relieving. The door opened up slowly before it could open up entirely a woman's face popped out slowly. Mariana smiled, but it gradually turned into a frown when Mildred reluctantly avoided welcoming her. Instead, she kept appearances up -- sad, anxious, but still smiling. "Oh, I-I..." She glanced to her right then left. "I just needed somewhere to stay for the night and talk to someone." She stated curtly than expected. The snappy tone made her stop and take in a deep breath. Her chest expanded each time her lungs took in the oxygen -- her anger got the best of her. Mariana bit her lip softly before speaking another word. "Sorry, Mildred." She said apologetically. "The words, they came out more rude than I thought they would. S-sorry." Time was slipping from her fingers. The sand of time slipped through her fingers, the longer she idled around the worse the situation would get.

"But anyways, please, Mildred." Her eyes widened, pale hazel eyes glistened in the dim lit hallway. "I really need your help." Her hand was on the door. She became more assertive than she was before. There was a sign of aggression slowly peeking out through her simple actions. Her hand was flat against the beige painted door. There were paint bubbles from the shitty job it was given, the door was rough to touch. This scene was something Mariana least envisioned; her in a cheap apartment complex asking help from an old friend she assumed was dead. Though her vulnerable countenance hid all demons that manifested inside of her.

Brow furrowed and eyes narrowed in circumspect, Mildred considered what stood on her doorstep. It wasn't just Mariana, it couldn't be. Always looking for signs, Mildred analyzed every word her old friend said, scrutinized her tone and appearance. It wasn't an ordinary house call. It wasn't a reunion to rekindle their former bond. Mariana had brought trouble with her. For what other reason would a person need help? Mildred found the affairs of other people vexing, but problem was just another word for opportunity, and that was exactly what Mildred had saw in her cards.

She smiled mischievously, proud of her divination. "To deny the Queen of Pentacles hospitality would be akin to rejecting prosperity." Mildred spoke aloud to herself. "Please pardon my earlier impertinence. You've caught me by surprise." Mildred opened the door as she spoke, welcoming Mariana inside. "Don't mind the mess, It's usually not this bad." Though in truth is always was. "What happens to be the problem?"
It was only moments of silence before Mildred spoke and when she did Mariana furrowed her brows in utter incertitude. The woman was an anomaly, certainly, she spoke of a Queen; simply, the sentence was ludicrous. "Um..." Mariana looked down at the floor avoiding momentary eye contact. Luckily, Mildred removed herself out of the odd mindset and gladly welcomed Mariana. "No, no, it was rude on my behalf." Before entering she gave the other woman a thin smile. Her white flats stepped into the small complex. Her pale hazel eyes scanned her surroundings -- it was absolutely a mess, a bit of it caused her to show signs of discomfort. It was grueling to muster out a smile from her lips. The room was something unexplainable nor could she elaborate and form a perfect lie. Instead, she nodded slowly and smiled bigger.

"No, no, no, it''s fine." She lied. Mariana made her way towards a seat beside the couch. "Sit down, would you? You might need to." She warned the woman about the news approaching. The words lingered on her lips. Her wits were unable to think of a tranquil way to present a murder, it was quite arduous on her brain. Mariana bit her lip, the soft flesh between her perfect teeth. Biting down hard on the flesh, cutting through it. Before she knew it her mouth had a taste of iron. "Oh." Her hand covered over her lips. With one quick wipe, her cardigan was stained with blood that matched her stained fingertips. Once Mildred sat nearby her Mariana took it upon herself to make physical contact. She took her hand that had tried blood on her fingertips and placed it on top of the woman's thigh. "Please don't snap, but..." The words trailed off and disintegrated.

The words quickly formed back into a proper statement. "Something happened to my husband and I-I-" Mariana began to feel the tears settled on her eye lid, slowly dropping. "I didn't know wh-where else to go." She retracted her hand back and began to cry a bit more.​
The obvious refuse, discarded coats, and plastics that bordered on squalor was completely ignored by Mildred. She made no last minute attempts to tidy, only wiping dust from her television screen with her sleeve. Reflection was important, a mirror of the situation, a clear image of just what was going on. Mildred's priorities seemed to be just as aberrant as all her other qualities.

As she sat down, Mildred was visibly startled by Mariana's touch, but quickly relaxed. The marbled stains of blood on her friend's fingers, scarlet lines neatly tracing the edges of her nails, they caught Mildred's eye. Her curiosity instantly kindled. She watched Mariana's lips intently, watching each word form and fall from them with interest.

"You're husband?" Mildred echoed, taking her eyes from the other to look for tissues. The best she could scavenge from her surroundings were a few coffee shop napkins, wrinkled but otherwise clean. Offering them to Mariana, she asked, "Is he hurt? Did he hurt you?" Mildred looked to her friend's hands. Her tone falling flat. "You've got blood on yourself."
'Did he hurt me?'

A distorted memory relapsed in her brain, his touch, warm yet so rough. There were red marks, the blood flow ceased by a strong grip -- was it fear? She looked down at her lap. The tear soaked skirt she wore had tear drops staining it. "I-I can't recall..." She stuttered, the words came out bombastic than expected. Her voice croaked a bit at the end of her sentence. There wasn't much she could disclose, even herself couldn't remember the scene. There was a shroud of blackness covering her sight, but there was no cloth around her, nobody behind her. Mariana brushed off the details simply replacing them with assumptions.

Mariana's hazel eyes shot at Mildred when she commented about the blood on her fingertips. Mariana chuckled nervously, glancing down at her fingertips. "I guess I got some on me when I came in contact with him..." She chuckled. She realized Mildred handed her brown napkins, usually seen at coffee shops. She reluctantly took the napkin, dabbing away the tears from her eyes. "Could you, do me a favor?" She inquired in a desperate tone. "M-my husband, his, his body is still in the kitchen. The blood is still gushing out...I need someone who can help me c-clean it up..." The sentence was strenuous to vocalize; the favor was quite much for herself.

Mariana looked at Mildred, the same look she had as a child -- a hopeful look.​
Repeating Mariana's words silently to herself, Mildred still couldn't quite piece together what had occurred to send her old friend to her doorstep at such an hour. Mariana's husband was obviously in an unfavorable condition, or was he simply in an unfavorable place? If Mariana was concerned for him then she would have contacted some kind of authority, preferably a hospital. People weren't cleaned up unless foul play was involved. Some kind of iniquity was at hand, and Mildred was being invited. She could sense it. It made her giddy.

There was only one downside Mildred could presage from such events, that was her own possible incarceration. If she wasn't thorough then she'd be labeled an accomplice and find herself in as desperate a situation as Mariana was in now. But that possibly was a distant thought in Mildred's mind. The chance to get her hands on actual viscera, to plunge her arm elbow deep into someone's subdiaphragmatic cavities was a temptation she couldn't deny of her own volition.

Mildred smiled wide. "I'm at your service Mariana. Just let me gather some supplies." She squeezed her friend's shoulder in reassurance. This was what Mildred had been waiting for. This was her three aces, her change in life, and she welcomed it fully.
Silence dawned upon the room, there were no words spoken. Long strands of blonde hair covered half her face when her head looked down at her lap. Those doe pale hazel orbs dilated into deranged orbs -- small dilated pupils surrounded by pure whites, veins traveling towards the pupil. The silence kept her up; Mariana played her cards correctly, Mildred was a perfect person to shove her trust into. Minuscule enigma's of her own being inserted into Mildred's intellect hopes that the degenerate would comply to every word that dangle from her lips. The quietude made her agitated, twitchy beyond belief.

Her body sprang abruptly at Mildred's sudden physical interactions. A hand that had a firm grip on her shoulder, she looked up blinking before she did. Her eyes reverting back to the original condition. A big smile was printed on her pretty facial structure. "Thank you Mildred." She leaned in for a tight hug. Her lips, close to Mildred's ear resonated an alluring, quite enticing voice. "Thank you so much, I am grateful for everything and will surely pay you back one way or another." Her slender arms loosened its tight coiling hug. Mariana pulled away from Mildred with a smile, wiping away the last tears that hung from her eyes.

"I'll wait in my car. I parked on the curb, its the only car without bird droppings." She sniffled breaking into a small giggle. "Thank you." She stood up walking outside leaving Mildred to prepare. In the hallway Mariana sniffled. She entered the elevator, walked out of the apartment, walked to her car, entered. Mariana leaned against the soft car seating, her arm covered her eyes concealing her vision. Inquiries flashed in her thoughts -- brainwaves traveled through her brain, queries constantly being asked. Yet, she couldn't find the piece to any of the enigma's she have conjured.​
Unaccustomed to such physical gestures, Mildred was rigid in Mariana's embrace. Her skin and clothes felt paper thin against her old friend. The nerves of her body burned with stimulation, sensitive to every subtle shift in temperature and air. Mildred felt her ears flush cerise with blood, timidity, and danger. Every word of appreciation caressed the helix of her ear. She repressed a shiver, managing a weak hug of reciprocation before Mariana pulled away.

"I'll be down soon." Mildred replied before the other woman slipped out the door. She tried valiantly not to ponder how Mariana would repay her. Having another indebted to you was useful, but something in the embrace Mildred had shared left her anxious. She tried to dismiss it as an eagerness to meet Mariana's husband. After all, that task was paramount. There would be no repayment if he wasn't taken care of first and there was plenty of reward in that deed alone.

Mildred shook a backpack empty and began to fill it with essentials. From beneath the kitchen sink she took enzyme based cleaners and a package of gaudy neon colored sponges. Back in the entropy of her bedroom, Mildred procured mason jars for smaller specimens, formalin solution, and a heavy plastic box that had a key lock. Any other supplies Mildred assumed she could find in Mariana's home, such as garbage bags.

In haste, Mildred tugged her boots on and left, slamming the door behind herself and twisting the knob thrice to assure it was locked. The elevator ride down felt insufferably long. When she reached the first floor Mildred had to restrain herself from running, managing a quick jog instead. Mariana's car was easy to find, bird shit or not, it was without a doubt the classiest car in the lot. Jerking the passenger's side door open, Mildred dropped heavily into the seat. She was ready.
The seconds went on quicker, the night was being drained, time became excruciating. Mariana bit her lower lip as her hands on the steering wheel coiled around. Her nailed dug into the leather exterior. She grew anxious as each minute passed. She couldn't keep calm, her heartbeat throbbed loud enough for her to vomit the organ out. She shook her head, she yearned for relief. To extract the anxiety consuming her. Mariana needed to yell out her frustrations, break the glass, go on a tantrum. The woman left a mental note, 'Take the pills...' She thought to herself. With a glance at Mildred's apartment, she watched as the other woman left the apartment complex with a bag filled with unknown content. Mariana could feel her heartbeat gradually lessen. A sigh of relief washed over her, she leaned against the backing of the drivers seat.

Mildred entered the car with ease. "Ready?" A rhetoric question. With or without the answer she started the car and headed towards the murder scene. The car drive was short and sweet. She drove past numerous of cars, street lights and didn't bother taking a stop. Each time she managed to catch the green light and pass quickly on a yellow. Before she knew it, she was parking inside her garage. The lights were automatic, illuminating the garage. Mariana got out of the car and locked the car once Mildred stepped out. "Follow me, please." She said in a timid voice. The woman opened the door, which led into the house. Her heartbeat radically raced upwards once again. She walked slowly towards the crime scene. Before stepping into the kitchen, the blood flow bled onto the wooden flooring. She jumped suddenly letting out a small squeal.

"Sorry...the blood, it just..." She stuttered walking into the kitchen. The cut profusely released an abundant amount of blood. Her hazel eyes fixated on her husband's dead body. Those exact hazel orbs looked up at Mildred, they had the look of helplessness. "What do I do?" She inquired in a timid voice she grew accustomed to speaking in. The body was no long warm and the blood stained the once beautiful kitchen marble.​
An anxious tension tightened in Mildred's shoulders as they drove. It wasn't born from an eagerness to dismember and eviscerate a man, nor was it caused by the apprehension of arrest. She just didn't know what to do while they drove. Mildred hadn't been in the quiet company of another is such a long time, it was awkward. She didn't know if she should bring up old history, or ask what Mariana had been up to over the years. Every topic felt incongruous. So the bated silence continued until they pulled into the garage.

Mildred stifled her awe and jealousy as she stepped from the car, following Mariana. The affluence of her old friend's home was palpable. The manicured lawn, abundant garage storage, and immaculate countertops were likely only a scintilla of the home's beauty. Such surroundings appeared opulent in comparison to Mildred's human rat nest. The corpse, slowly cooling in algor mortis, was a nice touch. Its accompanying blood pool was problematic however.

Seeing the disquiet in Mariana's eyes bolstered a confidence in Mildred. She felt certain in her abilities, if only to put Mariana at ease. "We'll need to move the body onto some sheet plastic, garbage bags, or a thick blanket. We can break it down into more manageable pieces there and better contain any spillage." Mildred explained, taking in the scene. "Once we move the body we can sop up this blood. The cleaner I brought can break down most of the proteins left behind. It shouldn't show up under a luminol test then."
To Mariana's surprise, Mildred spoke with utter knowledge of the problem at hand. Her mouth opened slightly to her surprise. Idling around for another moment or so she broke away from the revelation and began to scavage around the kitchen. Her petite body tip toed to the top cabinet, swung the cabinet door open. Her fingertips clawed upward to reach the trashbags. Memory was a sickly toxin that was infused into her brain cells. Dread memories of the past had her reluctantly grab hold of the box of trashbags. With a boost up from a jump the box fell down, pushed down by gravity. It collided against the marble floors. She picked up the box of garbage bags. In a swift motion she pulled out one, walked out of the kitchen avoiding the large pool of blood. She pulled the garbage bag away from each other tearing the plastic material. Mariana laid the garbage bag on the floor, she repeated with two more garbage bags.

She returned to Mildred. "I got the garbage bags, but, breaking it down?" She was confused at first. The sentence didn't process through her brain till she looked down at the deceased. Her hazel orbs trailed back up to Mildred. "Cu-cut him into p-pieces?" Her words stuttered. Her eyes shifted to the kitchen knives - amongst the racks of kitchen knives her eyes directly went to the butcher knife. A beloved gift from her step-mother. "That is what you meant, right? Cut him up? Or do you mean something else?" Questions overflowed the room. Mariana looked down at her feet rubbing her arm trying to regain as much of her tranquility.

"Just tell me what to do Mildred." She said lastly.​
As Mariana retrieved the trash bags and neatly laid them out, Mildred began to unload her pack. On the counter she placed the cleaner, sponges, jars, and the plastic box. The formalin could wait until after the festivities. Setting her bag out of the way, Mildred procured a key from a necklace of charms, key chains, and deer vertebrae. As though following ritual or habit, she stroked the top of the box and held her hand there a moment before slipping the key into the lock. With a twist it opened.

Inside were Mildred's sharps. Serrated knives, scalpels, curved needles, a syringe, and other metal instruments glittered back at her. Like looking into a treasure chest of jewels, Mildred grinned proudly at her collection. Carefully, she took from the surfeit of items a bone saw, gigli saw, and a razor thin fillet knife.

Hearing Mariana's questions, Mildred raised her brow incredulously. "Yes," she affirmed, "I mean cut him into pieces. We're going to dismember him." She took her selected tools and placed them beside the splayed garbage bags. The messier, arduous task of moving the body came first.

"I need you to help me move him." She explained, standing beside the corpse, blood sucking at the cracks in her shoes. "I can't lift him on my own and will likely make a mess. If you take one end then I'll get the other. We just need to get him on those bags."
A box filled with keen weapons was an astonishment to Mariana. A variety of weapons was resting in the box, eager to use. She watched as Mildred pulled out specific tools. Her question has been answered.

She bit her inner cheeks, she softly grind her teeth against the soft flesh. There were no words to respond, she brushed it off and nodded at Mildred. She positioned her body by the head of the deceased. Mariana's eyes looked straight at the deceased's. The large brown eyes held no life into them no longer - they simply stared blankly at the ceilings. Her hazel orbs stared at his brown one's. She lowered herself and swooped her arms underneath his armpits ready to pull him up. She looked up at Mildred waiting for her to grab hold of the legs. Once the other woman had a grip of the body she began to up her husband's body and moved it towards the laid out garbage bags. The back of the body was soaked with blood, leaving a mess where it rested. She lowered her arms resting the top half of the body on the garbage bags. There was no warmth in the body; its natural body heat fled from the body.

"I'll clean the floors. I have no interest in seeing his body being disjointed." She spoke coldly. She reentered the kitchen only to glance back at the body. Mariana averted her eyes hesitantly. She moved to the bag of supplies and pulled out a few bright neon sponges and the enzyme cleaner. Mariana opened the lower cabinet underneath the sink, pulled out a bucket. Before doing anything, she pulled out the gloves from the cabinet. Rubber industrial gloves she kept from strenuous housework. She began to work her way to sop up the blood. The blood was absorbed into the sponge discoloring the once ostentatious neon color. The bucket began to gradually be filled with blood and other debris. Through her time cleaning the floors, she glanced at the body. She grew anxious to see the body being disjointed. The feeling of disgust and curiosity kept her eyes glued onto the body.​
Moving Mariana's husband was no easy feat for Mildred. Her boots nearly lost traction in the thickening blood, threatening to spill the three of them to the floor. Worse was the residue it left on her hands. The trousers the body was clad in had slowly began to saturate with the pooling blood. As Mildred gripped behind the man's knees to carry him the vital substance seeped out and colored her fingers and palms. She tried to wipe it off on her jeans, but soon realized the gesture had only incriminated her. With a sigh, Mildred made a mental note to burn her jeans when she found the time.

With the body relocated atop the garbage bags, Mildred set to undressing it. Fillet knife in hand, she slipped the blade underneath the fabric and cut up through. The legs of the trousers were opened as where those of his undergarments beneath. The sleeves and torso of his shirt was cut wide as well, the edges tucked beneath him. Mildred didn't want to try peeling the blood soaked articles off. The task better left for after the dividing.

Mildred had never cut apart a human before. She was aware that the joints could be popped apart and the flesh reflected, clean and surgical. But Mildred wasn't confident she could do that. So she relied on what she knew would work. Beginning on the left arm, Mildred took the fillet knife and smoothly sliced through the flesh just below the shoulder, each stroke cutting deeper until she reached the bone. She then rotated the appendage so she could cut through the flesh beneath. Once done, Mildred had a view of the humerus. She wrapped the wire of the gigli saw around it and began to sever the bone. Not once did she look to see Mariana cleaning the blood. Mildred was focused on her task.
The blood dripped from the soap as she mangled it tightly. Her hazel orbs watched the keen blade shine in the kitchen light, the glimmer shined beautifully. The fine blade sliced through the flesh. Each stroke cut through beautifully. The blade was stained with blood, the cut flesh oozed blood slowly. Mariana turned away returning to her own work. She threw the third sponge into the bucket of blood, pulled out a fresh new one and began to spray the ground of enzyme based cleaner. She began to clean the ground, scrubbing away the blood residue. The marble floors began to revert back to its original condition. The blood disappeared and her floors were shining brightly. She sprayed the cleaning spray - thus, she began to scrub between the kitchen and the living room where the blood trailed off. The smell of the cleaning product got to her head. She covered her nose with her arm.

Finally, the blood was cleaned up. She looked over at Mildred and rose from her scrubbing position. She approached Mildred slowly - her footsteps resonated no sound. She watched Mildred slice through the flesh. The cut was deep enough to where the bone became visible. A different blade began to cut through the bone slowly. She watched as the blade stroked through the bone making one clean swipe. She walked toward the other side of the body where she could see Mildred's expression. "Can I help you?"​
With a startled jerk, Mildred released the arm to the floor. It fell with a heavy, wet sound, the garbage bags crinkling beneath its weight. She had been so engaged in her business that she neglected to notice Mariana standing before her. The woman's words, seeming so sudden, had sent a jolt through Mildred.

"Help?" she echoed Mariana's word dumbly as she tried to regain her composure. The idea hadn't crossed her mind, that Mariana would want to take part in the dismembering. It's not that Mildred found assistance unwelcome, in fact it was a delight to have another take interest in what she did, but Mildred didn't know how to instruct someone. She pressed her lips together in a moment's thought before dismissing any apprehension she had altogether.

"Of course you can." Mildred grinned wide, an ingenuous smile. "There's plenty to be done still so-" she lengthened the final syllable as she mentally check off a list. Her eyes and brow raised in thought before finally announcing what was to be done. "There's damaging the finger prints, gutting him, taking off the legs and other arm, decapitating him, putting the choice pieces in jars, and then bagging the leftover." Mildred listed, ticking each action off on her fingers. "Where would you like to start?"
There was an incredulous smile that graced upon Mildred's face. Mariana returned the smile, not as naive, but small and unpredictable. She crouched down to become arms length with the cadaver. It has already lost an arm, the blood didn't flow out profusely as before. Her eyes scanned the body and its entirety - color was fading from its skin, the body was cool to the touch, and its eyes stared deeply into the ceiling as if something was above. Her eyes fell back onto Mildred. There was a list of things that must be taken cared of. Mariana looked at the body once more. With no absolute knowledge of dismembering nor disrupting the fingerprints, she had a slight knowledge of gutting.

It took her back to the time where she gutted animals for the sake of her husband. She assumed the difficulty of gutting an animal isn't hard from gutting a human. To her, it was all the same; just a large pouch of organs. "I'll gut him, just guide me through the process." She said. Mariana had her fingertips dancing above the keen tools. Her eyes would glance back at Mildred once or twice to see if there was a change of facial expression. She picked up a small keen blade, it was a precise blade that was recognized in science laboratories. "Will this do? Or have I chosen wrong?" There was a playful smile that graced her face. Something eccentric and peculiar sparked the playful expression on her face, something disturbing.​
Though Mildred had been hoping to do the gutting herself, she was willing to take a supporting role in the process. As long as the glossy-slick viscera and their rheumy effluvium were left for her to pick over she didn't mind guiding Mariana. The problem was Mildred was a tyro in human dissection as well. For all the autopsies and anatomy she had indulged in, Mildred was just as new as Mariana. In their situation, a blade and body between them, knowledge was paltry compared to experience.

It didn't dampen Mildred's eagerness though. Her specimens didn't need to be perfect, and she never shied from a mess. "That knife will do perfectly." she grinned wickedly. "We'll need to cut away the skin, fat, and muscle." Mildred began to explain, tapping her index finger at the jugular notch and tracing it down the body to the pubic symphysis at the groin. "It's best to start by cutting a median line and then two perpendicular to it at the ends of the line near the collar bone and pelvis. That way we can open him like a book. Once you start peeling back one side, I'll begin working on the other." Mildred flashed her curved fillet knife in emphasis. "Ready?"