Sunday Writing Prompt “It’s All in the Title” – The Day the Willows Shrieked


When I answered the door, Sunday had that grimace on her face that always meant bad news.

There had been a murder, a gruesome one as it turned out.

Sunday had an order from the Chief for me to go and look into the crime scene.

Shrieking Willows was the sort of place best described as being out of town. It was a popular place to picnic, which meant it had its fair share of picnickers on the weekend.

By the time I arrived there were cop cars everywhere. People were still at their picnic sites refusing to leave, as they believed the murder had nothing to do with them.

Through the glare of the flashing lights, I made out Detective Debtman, an old adversary of mine from my days on the force.

Debtman was an oaf of a man, clumsy and not always as diligent as he could be when investigating anything that came his way.

I went over and asked him what the score was. He wasn’t pleased to see me, then again he never was. Reluctantly he told me there was one dead woman, a Priscilla Catscore, a mother of two, wife of Bernard Catscore the town’s chartered accountant.

I immediately thought of a few reasons for doing away with an accountant. My accountant wasn’t called Sleazy Joe for no reason.

The deceased was lying under a picnic rug; she had been shot several times. Her husband was sitting under an oak tree a few feet away but said he heard nothing.

Just as he uttered those words of innocence, a breeze moved through the willows giving rise to the term shrieking willows.

As the wind picked up the shrieking became louder, and the unmistakeable sound of Bernie seemed to echo from the waving willow branches.

I looked at Bernard Catscore, and if ever a man looked guilty it was at that moment.

Before I said anything, I remembered Sunday’s words before I left to investigate: “Listen to the willows, they always tell the truth.”

I fronted Bernard Catscore, and I soon had him a crumpled mess, confessing to his wife’s murder. She had it coming he said for spreading vile rumours about his accounting practice.

As they took him away, I wondered if everything would add up in this case.



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9 Responses to Sunday Writing Prompt “It’s All in the Title” – The Day the Willows Shrieked

  1. I love how you used the title in this and the concept of willows always speaking the truth and helping to identify the culprit very clever

  2. James says:

    So who’s the protagonist? A consulting detective like Sherlock Holmes?

  3. floatinggold says:

    I love the title.
    I’m not sure why, but this story reminded me of St. Peter, who denied Jesus 3 times the night he said he wouldn’t, before the rooster crowed three times. Nature is mighty. Has its eyes and ears.

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