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The Tattooed Corpse

by Jude Roy

About the Author: Jude Roy's stories have appeared in The Southern Review, American Short Fiction, Mysterical-E, and numerous magazines and anthologies. Originally from Chataignier, LA, he now resides in Madisonville, KY.


I received the call at exactly one o’clock in the morning according to my cell phone. Nothing good ever comes from such calls.

“Yeah?” I grumbled.

“Someone is trying to kill me, and I need to know who,” the caller blurted out.

I sat up in bed.

“How do you know someone is trying to kill you?”

“I found a note in my mailbox that said so?”

“Let’s start from the top. What’s your name?”

“Howard Fontenot.”

“Okay, Howard. Have you contacted the police?”

“No, no police.”

“We’ll talk about that later. What did the note say?”

“That I was going to die before the night was over. I figured that if I was going to go, I’d want whoever did it to pay, so I called you. I transferred two thousand dollars to your account at the Ellisonville bank.”

That would make my impoverished account dance with joy.

“It’s probably some prank, Howard. Someone is having fun at your expense. Probably some kid.”

“If that’s the case, you get two thousand dollars to find out who.”

“Okay, where do you live? I’ll come over.” I figured, for two thousand dollars, I could do without sleep.

“Mississippi River Avenue 1204, Riverside Condos, number three.”

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