‘Okay, okay, that’s fine. Now a nice smile, darling.’
‘Yes, that’s wonderful. I’ve got you in focus and I just need to twiddle these switches and …. Nearly there, darling.’
‘Oh dear, that’s not what I wanted at all. No, not at all. Look, if you just step over to your left, I’ll get you full on with the sun in your hair and the wind blowing your golden locks out towards sea. My goodness, what a snapshot that will be…’
‘Yes, just left a little…’
‘Right a bit…. Yes, towards where you were before.’
‘That’s better, darling… Yes, indeed. I tell you what if you move to the right again, I can get the harbour in behind you and the ferry leaving for the island soon.’
‘Yes, I know I’m a pain but do you want this photograph or not?’
‘I KNOW IT’S YOUR BLOODY CAMERA!’
‘Sorry, darling, yes, I know, my temper. So very sorry. Look, I’m not trying to confuse you at all. Just step back a little and to your right.’
‘Got you, just right….’
‘What?.... Yes, I know everyone on the beach is looking up at you. That’s because they can see what I can see…. A beautiful woman….. Yes, I love you too.’
‘Then don’t be confused. I’m not trying to muddle your mind. I’m anxious we get the best photograph possible and I don’t care if they are looking up at you. The view here from the cliffs is fantastic. Now just concentrate, put them out of your mind and listen to me.
‘Of course, I love you. I know what I’m doing. Just step back and trust me. Left, two steps and back two steps. The further you go back the better the shot will be because the background of the photograph will take in the harbour much better below.’
‘I know the cliffs are dangerous!’
‘That’s good, stand perfectly still, darling. I’ll take it on three…. One…. Two…. Take a step back, darling….’
There was a scream that penetrated the air and rippled across the cliff tops as his wife stepped backwards and lost her footing on the rough ground beneath.
He smiled, pocketed his camera, watched her fall from the cliffs into the raging sea below and whispered to the wind…. ‘Three… And that’s another life insurance to cash in…. Darling…. ‘
He strolled towards the pathway one more, put on a tearful face, forced an anguished scream and ran pathetically towards the beach below congratulating himself on the murder witnessed by many on the shoreline below - a murder planned that seemed to be just a woman, perhaps confused, who had taken a backward step too many – and fallen to her death.
It was his fourth wife, his fourth murder – all resulting in claims on another life insurance policy…. Accidents from a snapshot in time?