Mallory: It turns out that all hope is not lost. Except maybe for us. Ben and I are coming to you from outside the Queens County courthouse and, no, grandma, we’re not getting married. We would have invited you so you could say you already agreed to go to a neighbor’s wedding. Just like for my first communion. It was the same ceremony. You were just sitting in a different pew, cheering for another girl. The priest asked you to quiet down four times. You didn’t need the maracas and confetti when she ate the wafer.
Ben: I hope she’s enjoying her new trailer in Florida.
Mallory: Mom said an alligator ate two of the wheels off and stole a frozen Di Giorno pizza.
Ben: I didn’t know alligators could open a chest freezer.
Mallory: I didn’t know they fled on bicycles either.
Anyway, the vote happened. We voted. Ben and I used the same booth and someone got mad at us, and apparently election booths aren’t also a bathroom, as for some reason we both previously thought.
It turns out, everyone got the murders out of their systems and they don’t really care about the assasination industry. I always knew it was us against the world.
The legislation still leaves the door open to put legal murder on the ballot every 3 years, which is going to be very bad for business and worse for serious but short-term grudges.
Apparently the phrasing, “should we have state-regulated assasination?” was very clear this time. This was very different from November’s Prop 379-B: Should New York State Entity not not not allow for state-regulated control of human liquidation subsidiaries not maybe?
Ben: Last time, I saw ads telling me to vote a bunch of different ways: Some said vote yes to stop legal murders, another said vote no to stop legal murder, and others said vote and we’ll murder you. Some of them just told me to put the dot in the middle.
Linguists and grammarians are still having arguments about that sentence. Someone’s writing their dissertation on it
Mallory: I just wrote in “Yes, murder.” with an exclamation point. At the time I was really sure one of my roommates was using my razor.
But, this is all just distraction, focusing on the very recent past.
Ben: Tell them about the very recent present.
Mallory: Here’s the problem: Ben never got us the LLC . I guess there weren’t any at the dollar store for your mom to steal.
Ben: The line was really long at the courthouse and there were no voting booths to pee in.
Mallory: We were never incorporated either. Grandma said “maybe for Christmas.” She said that about frozen pizza, and apparently she had one all along.
Maybe you’ve seen us in the news. Murderopolis--and basically every other company---are kind of using us as a sacrifice. What did we expect from a bunch of soulless murderers? Just to be clear, we still think we were the soulful kind.
Ben: We have soul. We even see souls. Right, Cordelia?
Mallory: She’s here to watch my downfall. What did I tell you?
Ben: Why can’t she be here to support me?
Mallory: We were the flaw in the legislation. They were good murderers, the big-box companies. They did it right. They checked the boxes. They didn’t shred their files with a pizza cutter. They didn’t try to murder people with telepathy in the knife section at JC Penny.
Ben: I eventually gave up and threw a few knives.
Mallory: He clipped a few people, but not the one he was supposed to kill.
Ben: Not bad for a guy who has only ever had knives thrown AT him.
Mallory: Apparently the big murder companies saw this vote coming, and that’s why they let us participate in the murder games and also pay the entry fee with cheez-its. Which we still owe them and our ability to pay this debt will factor into this hearing.
After Kill Witch’s viral video, our other records got out, and people started listening to these recordings I made on my phone. Apparently they don’t make us look great. A bunch of them are just me and Ben arguing over what kind of cheese to put on toast.
Ben: Hashtag team Lumburger
Mallory: Because your basement doesn’t smell bad enough
Actually, 6 of the recordings are just butt dials. No one told us this because they thought we were making fun of the killing industry and its regulations. They thought Ben’s marketing emails were a joke.
Ben: I should have known when people were like, “good one,” and, “what a great lampoon of the killing industry and its regulations.”
Mallory: Apparently, based on our records it’s extremely obvious that we did not fully read the legislation, safety protocol, or really anything past the title of a pamphlet, which is called So, Murder Is Legal, Now What? Half the people we took commissions from were overseas shell corporations, a third were dogs with instagram accounts, and one was an international supervillain, which is apparently a no-no.
Kill Witch and Crystal Murderer both tried to flee to Canada, and then realized they were going the wrong way. They ended up in Florida, a state which has weird protections for people who maybe legally murdered someone?
So, here we are. About to face supposed justice. About to listen to all the things I did wrong, just like every time I tried to play Lite Brite when I was four.
Maybe it’s my conscience, or maybe it’s the massive paper trail that’s going to reveal the truth no matter what, or maybe it’s the possibility of a shorter sentence. Should I own it? Is it feminist to own your mistakes?
Susan B Anthony isn’t apologizing for corsets or confusing dollar coins. Marilyn Monroe isn’t apologizing for subway grates blowing ladies’ dresses up and up, or for unrealistic face mole standards. Jane Austen isn’t out here denouncing the rom-com or the bro film. She didn’t even apologize for how long Mansfield Park is!
Ben: They say they’re sorry. For all of it.
Mallory: What? OK, Fine, we got a little out of hand. We took jobs no one else took because we were trying to do some good in the world. Do some good for ourselves, too. There was some self-interest.
Someone should have stopped us. I mean, we were right out there, on rideshare apps and stabbing people in broad daylight with crystals and drano. It’s not my fault that we only got 3 views on youtube and two of them were my brother trying to explain to mom that he wasn’t the most criminal sibling.
At least Ben and I will go to jail together
Ben: No. No we won’t.
Mallory: Fine. Ben was hired by the city as an in-between for ghosts wanting to sue to end legal murder. I think they’re going to give him amnesty since he’s suffered, and continues to suffer by being himself.
I said that I suffered, too. I still have Uncle Gerald. How is there justice for me but not for uncle Gerald?
[starting to break down] MIchelle Obama condemned us on national TV like we were obese elementary school kids.
I’m sorry. It's almost time for us to go in. I think I’m just going through guilt and bargaining, all those stages.
Ben: Ah, adolescence.
Mallory: [deep breath] Ben, will you walk in with me?
Ben: We’ll I’m not going to wait out here and then walk in after you.
Ben: Cordelia’s between us.
Mallory: Of course she is.
Kill Witch: In. NOW.
Crystal Murderer: Get IN.
Mallory: I, well
Kill Witch: This is Queens Boulevard. Hurry up!
Mallory: Fine, but if anyone asks, we were kidnapped.
[car door closing] [car screeching]
Mallory: [whispering] It’s Kill Witch and Crystal Murderer in a Hyundai Sonata. Crystals are taped everywhere to the inside and outside of the car, like it has a shiny bubonic plague. Ben has decided to take his chances with us.
Ben: I’ve never made my own decisions. If I don’t have a woman to tell me what to do, I just sit on the floor and cry.
Crystal: It wasn’t right what they were going to do to you. That trial was going to be a koala court.
Mallory: You mean a kangaroo court?
Crystal: No, they were pulling their jury from the zip code that contains only the Bronx Zoo.
Kill Witch: I’m so glad we got there in time.
Mallory: Thanks. You really brought out the cavalry. I’m touched. Crystal Murderer, what do these crystals do? I will listen to any and all of your explanations.
Crystal Murderer: You can call me Jamie.
Mallory: But your name is Rebecca.
Crystal: The crystals repel those speed radars and they block our license plate. The blue ones make cops fall off their motorcycles. If you hit them right. Kill Witch is operating the Crystal Catapult. I’m going to make millions off of it.
Mallory: OK, that is a crossbow with crystals taped to the arrows. We don’t do this anymore. We’re not allowed to do this anymore.
Ben: We never were.
Kill Witch: I always wanted to live in a world like Mad Max.
Ben: Is that the message you’re supposed to get out of those movies?
Kill Witch: I hate showering and I actually kind of love violence. It’s been a journey for me.
Mallory: Speaking of journeys, where are we heading?
Ben: Are we going to hole up on that part of the highway that’s technically Connecticut until they extradite us?
Kill Witch: We’re going to go stay with my Canadian coven. They said once that they’d never go out for poutine without me. Now I can enforce that.
Crystal Murderer: No way! We’re going back to Florida. We can have a life there.
Mallory: Well, this expressway goes to Long Island, and once you’re out there you’re kind of locked in. Just ask the Long Island Serial Killer.
Kill Witch:Aah!, turn around!
Mallory: You can’t just do that! [tires screeching, honking] OK, I guess you can.
Ben: Wait, we forgot Cordelia! We have to go back.
Mallory: She’ll catch up!
Crystal: Did you guys know you could smoke crystals? They have so much of it in Florida!
Kill Witch: Now that you’re not my employer anymore, I have to tell you something.
Mallory: Oh, boy. Getting flashbacks to every teacher I’ve ever had after. I should have had “You’re never going to make anything of yourself” embroidered on one of those round thingies.
Kill Witch: Mallory, I don’t care what all my spiritual advisors say, I have feelings for you. That time I bought all those lint rollers, that soup that was mostly sand and extra-strength rubbing vodka, that was just because I was nervous, and also my personality.
Mallory: Kill Witch, Kerry--
Kill Witch: Call me Sherry. We’re on the lamb. It’s my Thunderdome name.
Mallory: Kerry, um, Sherry. I’m so flattered, but I don’t feel the same way.
Kill Witch: I thought you were a lesbian.
Mallory: No, you were right about that.
Kill Witch I see [fingers drumming]
Mallory: Well. This is going to be an awkward 15 hours, if we make it. If I make it. And I’m not looking forward to seeing Grandma. Is it possible to go to Florida and not see your grandma? As always, It’s been an honor and a pleasure! Until next time, whenever that is!
Ben: [shouting] Cordeliaaaaaaa
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Sam Barbaro is a writer for the Fearsome Morning Podcast and Assassin.ly.