You pad out of the bathroom totally naked. Your wavy and thick shoulder-length corn-blonde hair is still a little damp, but you love it that way, love the feel of it, the smell of it, the lustrous image of it.
You are totally cleansed, pure, and refreshed after your shower, and your vagina is freshly shaved and completely bare, a kind of born-again virginity – perfection.
Your bowels and bladder are empty, and you have sipped half a tumbler of spring water – you need nothing to distract you, not even the tiniest hint of thirst, to diminish in any way the beauty, the divinity, or stall the inevitability, of the next few minutes.
You enter the bedroom with your arousal and excitement growing little by little with every movement of your nude body, the swing of your elegant arms, your measured stride, the roll of your buttocks, the gentle sway of your breasts, the in and out of your breath.
At the foot of the king-sized bed is the camcorder mounted on the carefully positioned tripod – you need to record every little detail and moment, savour it later, from beginning to end - which you switch on before clicking on record.
You walk round to the left-hand side of the bed and manoeuvre yourself onto the duvet cover which is patterned with blood-red hearts of varying sizes on a light cerise background - which you knew was cutesy-kitsch at the time but couldn’t convince yourself otherwise and still ordered it – before shuffling around for a couple of seconds to settle yourself comfortably as the back of your head sinks a little into the large pink pillows.
Your hands travel down to your thighs and gently caress them with the tips of your long fingers as your breathing begins to slow, yet deepen, at the same time as your gaze pans around the white painted walls of your bedroom at the many framed photos of you in various locations and states of dress, or undress. You love yourself, are obsessed with yourself, fancy yourself absolutely and totally, find no one as attractive or as sexy as yourself, vain to the nth degree, narcissistic, and you care not a jot; in fact, you imagine that the past images of you are now looking on like a select audience of silent voyeurs relishing your self-lovemaking.
Butterfly like, and almost with a will of their own, your hands delicately trace circles upon the tanned and silky-smooth flesh of your trim little tummy teasing out the delicious light tingling of ever-increasing arousal. And now gently groaning your head half pushes back into the pillow simultaneously as your beautiful cobalt-blue eyes momentarily partially close…
Looking up you see your whole naked body reflected in the mirrored ceiling tiles: slim, long, and toned limbs, modest breasts, protuberant nipples, golden brown skin, delicate shaped neck, high cheek bones, wide mouth, sensuous lips, small nose, big blue eyes – love and lust. Powerful. Pure.
You take hold of both breasts with each hand and roughly maul them all the time whilst lightly groaning.
And now you gently pinch and pull each erect nipple in turn as though squeezing every last little drop of pleasure out of them yet gazing up all the time at your reflection, observing your tanned thighs slowly move up and down as you continue to charge erotically.
You raise your right hand to your lips, wet it with your saliva, reach out to your vagina, find the bud of your clitoris, and commence to rub whilst continuing to stimulate your right nipple with the other hand – you are the ultimate invisible lover.
You begin to half roll and writhe on the covers, now panting, your bronzed flesh shiny with a thin layer of perspiration…
And then you orgasm, a thousand, thousand nerve endings discharging and merging into a scintillating tsunami of ecstasy that carries your being all before it, prior to gradually fading away…
Spent, totally spent, breathless, you relax, feel so good… and then you feel a little dizzy, an incredible pain in your chest like a sharp knife being thrust into it, and suddenly you’re floating above your still and lifeless naked body observing it from above with its eyes glazing over, and you realize incredulously that you’re dying, that it’s over, forever. And then there’s a brief sensation of falling, and you know no more…
Of course, I don’t know what she really fantasized about and experienced – I have read between the lines and written on the wall as it were, extrapolated, coloured in the white spaces. Possibly she felt a little ill from the beginning and carried on regardless. Maybe also I want to believe that the last moments of her young life (she was thirty-two) were the absolute best, that she lived her obviously narcissistic life to the full.
I had watched the rest of the video as her skin pallor had lightened with the cessation of blood flow at the same time as her muscle tone had become flaccid leading to a small leakage of urine and faeces. Her jaw had also slowly fallen open, her gaping mouth giving one the impression of shock or mild horror.
I think it was her eyes gazing sightlessly into the abyss of oblivion that affected me emotionally the worst – I don’t know why, and I have seen far more horrific things.
The camcorder had continued recording for about an hour after her death and then either been switched off or had run out of battery power – we can’t be certain.
But it wasn’t the end of the story – she was resurrected and lived on in a way…
About thirty minutes after Leena Alexander had breathed her last, her cleaner, Jacqui Axbury had let herself into the house and had found Leena dead upon the bed. We are not sure what her initial reaction would have been either because - we know this from her secret diaries - it turns out that Jacqui was secretly in love with Leena. It’s also possible that she turned the camcorder off, though her prints weren’t on it.
What we do know is that within the hour Jacqui had access to Leena’s online banking app and had set up a new standing order to herself increasing her payments, but not so much that it would have flagged up – she was smart. In the next couple of days, she also ordered a new debit card (claiming that she had lost the previous one) and changed the PIN. Having access to Leena’s finances meant she could study her spending habits and quietly take over without arousing any suspicion. The good thing for Jacqui was that Leena paid for everything online or with a card with a regular income from a trust fund set up from the inheritance from her parents who had both tragically died several years before in a car accident.
Also working in Jacqui’s favour was that Leena was a semi-recluse and had very little to do with her neighbours and had no friends or confidantes except Jacqui whom she’d shared quite a few personal details with, and one of those details (written about in Jacqui’s diary) was that she’d got involved with a guy, Doug Mevain, who turned out to be a near psychopathic stalker. Leena had suffered a nervous breakdown as a result and had then relocated from Dundee to a quiet estate on the northern outskirts of Medport, a small market town in the middle of the Chalk Peninsula on the south coast of England. Fortunately, Mevain had never pursued her.
Of course, Jacqui could never have got away with her scheme as long as she did (just over five years) without one other, very crucial, factor – she was almost the double of Leena: same height, same build, same dress size, same age (to a few months) and with very similar features. And, also vitally necessarily, could mimic Leena’s Scottish accent.
Within a week, it would appear, Jacqui had completely taken over Leena’s life yet was also still living her own but now far easier life principally bankrolled by Leena – investigations show that Jacqui, who owned her own cleaning business had halved her workload and had also managed to start saving money. Leena’s account paid for most of Jacqui’s shopping (she did use her own account but reduced her spending rather than completely stop it, to again allay suspicion), all her clothes and various other luxury items but again not going mad and attracting attention. Adding that to the extra two days a work she was getting paid for she was considerably better off whilst working a lot less. In addition, she would take Leena’s mobile phone when she was masquerading as her, for example when she went swimming to a late evening session (with only usually a handful of users) at the local pool to show the phone company that she was active – we know all this from subsequent investigations. Jacqui had also worn Leena’s swimming costume and googles (till they had worn out and she had replaced them) and had paid with her debit card too. One of the other factors was that Leena didn’t drive so when Jacqui was ‘being Leena’ she would use public transport – we do have recent CCTV images of Jacqui travelling on a bus to the leisure centre. We also must visualize Jacqui, whilst at the pool, putting off potential suitors utilizing a Scottish accent – it would stretch credulity that a slim and pretty, scantily clad, young female wouldn’t attract the attention of opportunistic red-blooded males. All in all, it could be said that Jacqui in taking over Leena’s identity had taken calculated risks, for half a decade, but they had worked out.
But what happened to Leena’s body, I hear you say?
Nothing, except natural processes, is the simple answer to that question, though I must elaborate.
Again, it’s part speculation, but when Jacqui discovered naked Leena stretched out dead on the bed, she would have been presumably quite shocked, and what we know of her feelings for Leena, probably quite upset too. Heartbroken even. And I have already spoken of this.
Jacqui, however, was an opportunist. Her early life had been quite tough, and she had no illusions about life or people. Or even herself. She was very probably quite cut up, but she would have also concluded that nothing she felt or did was going to bring Leena back. So, quite quickly she had formulated a plan, checked out the scenarios and likelihoods of being caught, and then proceeded with it – Jacqui was a smart cookie though she had no formal qualifications.
With regards to Leena’s body, she must have thought that attempting to dispose of it would have been riskier than just leaving it where it was, so all she did was make the door airtight (the window was already slightly open) by squeezing rubber sealant into the cracks around the bedroom door and just kind of forgetting about her. It may be that she did that to give herself time to concoct a better plan re disposing of the corpse but never actually got round to it. Of course, as the body putrefied it would have given off a terrible smell and attracted multitudes of flies, but Leena’s two-bedroomed house was at the end of a terrace next to fields and the wind tended to blow north away from the other properties. It would have helped that the next-door neighbour was an elderly gentleman who not only kept himself to himself but also seemed to have his windows permanently closed. He’s still living there by the way, and in his nineties, and had absolutely no inkling of what had happened when he was questioned.
After a bit the body would have skeletonized and become inert, which was how it was found after the police broke down the door.
In the meantime, when Jacqui wasn’t going through the motions of perpetuating Leena’s life, she was ‘finding herself’. Her internet history and searches reveal that she now discreetly sought gay women who were blonde and pretty like her and Leena. She was successful too – a series of encounters and short-term (Jacqui could never commit even if she wanted to because it would jeopardize the whole Leena scam), often quite intense, relationships ensued. But deep down, because of the circumstances of Jacqui’s death, I also believed that she had never got over Leena – she was her true love. Her first love.
And believe me when I say that it all comes to a head very quickly.
That Friday evening, Katherine, who was from London, caught the train down to Medport to spend the weekend with Jacqui at her one-bedroomed flat in Medport High Street. But she was surprised and disappointed when Jacquie didn’t meet her off the train as arranged. Katherine had also wondered if anything was amiss since the last text (an enthusiastic one) she had received from Jacqui had been sent at about six o’clock on Thursday. She had repeatedly phoned but each time it had gone to voicemail. Frustrated by it all and more than a little annoyed Katherine had booked into the local Premier Inn.
The next morning, Saturday, she again tried to get in contact with Jacqui but to no avail. Now quite worried she had contacted the police who hadn’t really taken it seriously before going into the local mobile phone outlet and inquiring as to whether they could trace the location of her phone. They said they could because Jacqui had a contract with them. But they would require police permission to do so. Katherine then returned to the police station and told them, a total lie, that Jacqui was diabetic, and she was seriously concerned that she may have slipped into a coma. This sparked the police into action and within a short while they had located her to Leena’s house.
When they had all turned up, they had found the lights on, and the curtains drawn. Peering through a crack in the curtains the policeman had seen Jacqui naked and lying very still on the leather sofa in Leena’s lounge. The front door had been broken into, but it had all been too late – Jacqui was dead.
After the investigation it transpired that Jacqui had been fingering herself to one of Leena’s masturbation videos on her PC and had suffered a fatal cardiac arrest herself. Coincidence and karma you might say but there was more to it. And as you would expect, the police soon found the sealed bedroom door which revealed not only the skeletal remains of Leena lying upon the heavily stained bed but also the camcorder still on its tripod. One can only imagine the look on the face of the officer when he had swung open the door to be confronted with that scene.
A full in-depth inquiry was launched with one of the weirder facts emerging (and DNA confirming it) being that Leena and Jacqui, unbeknownst to each other, were first cousins. This was due to Leena’s mother’s younger sister falling pregnant at around the same time as her. However, Jacqui’s mother was not ready, she was only seventeen, for motherhood so she travelled down south to London where she had Jacqui who was subsequently adopted by the Axburys who were childless and in their late thirties. Jacqui was a difficult child and eventually estranged herself from her religious parents who found out about her lesbian inclinations and were horrified. Before she left, she stole a fair amount of money from them, correctly judging that they wouldn’t call the police out of shame – she never saw them again. The first place she headed to was Bournemouth where she made money by performing girl-on-girl action for select audiences. She did this for several years before relocating to Medport, setting up her own successful cleaning business and purchasing a small one-bedroom flat. It was a little while after that Leena contacted her re cleaning her house.
One of the tragic aspects of this tale is that both Leena and Jacqui inherited a gene from the maternal side for sudden death syndrome that probably could have been picked up and treated had the medical authorities known about it. Jacqui’s biological mother was still alive, but her mother (the maternal grandmother of Leena and Jacqui) had died suddenly a long time ago. It’s possible that Leena’s mother may have had the gene, but she died in a car accident, so we’ll never know.
But there’s just one more thing.
From reading Jacqui’s diaries (she stopped writing them the day she found Leena dead) it was clear to her that though she was very fond of Leena, and had shared a lot, that feeling wasn’t fully reciprocated.
But she was wrong. Very wrong. You see, Leena’s will had been lodged at her solicitors and in it she had bequeathed everything, everything, to her dear friend, Jacqui Axbury.
So, in fact, not only had there been no need to for Jacqui to embark on a crooked double life, but she would also have been ten times better off by simply reporting Leena’s death in the first place.
Anyway, that’s the tale which was too good to not tell, and if you’re wondering who I am, then lets just say I’m an interested party who just happened to pass on a story…