The toothbrush lay innocently on the mottled floor. It’s bristles were only slightly worn, as if it had not been used much to clean the teeth of its owner. Yet they were stained a dirty gray color, as if by repeated exposure to water not as clean or pure as it could have been.
The brown handle resembled quartz with the light from the window reflecting from it and penetrating it as well. That light coming through the handle left a golden brown glow on the floor’s surface. It was beautiful, somehow, resembling as it did an item of antiquity, a treasure from a much older civilization.
In a different setting one could even imagine the toothbrush as a wonderful exhibit in a museum case. Perhaps it had once whitened the teeth of a famous scientist or an artist or even a head of state.
But there was no such dignitary.
No such case.
No such museum.
You see, the other end of the toothbrush – the handle – had been drawn over time through the bars that covered the window in this room . . . this cell. Over months of the same repeated action, first one side of the handle, then the other, the material had been worn away until the handle culminated in a point as sharp as any dagger.
This end of the brush was now a different color. It was red with the blood of its victim. He was . . or had been . . a guard in this prison until the owner of the brush, maddened by years of confinement and cruelty, had plunged the sharp edge into the man’s throat, killing him in an instant.
The assailant sat quietly in his cell, waiting.
He had already been sentenced to life in prison without parole.
He had nothing left.
Not even a toothbrush.
As you might expect, this is but a piece of fiction, part of a weekly writing exercise instituted by Willow, of Willow Manor. You can read other works by other writers at Magpie Tales.