Nick was put under house arrest, pending trial. He hired Dean McCormack, a well-known attorney, who agreed to cut his normal fee substantially. There was a bit of animosity toward him from some of the townsfolk, but being a seasoned barrister, he shrugged it off. It wasn’t the first time he had weathered scorn, nor he suspected, would it be the last.
He found it curious that Nick didn’t seem to be interested in discussing his plight. He was begging McCormack to reach out to Marilyn on his behalf. Only after McCormack brutally told Nick that he should not be trying to talk to the mother of the daughter he was on trial for murdering, did he relent.
During the trial, the D.A. confided to Marilyn that he believed Nick would not be convicted due to lack of evidence, and he wanted her to be prepared. What little evidence they did have was circumstantial at best, and he wanted her to understand. Marilyn was eerily calm when she told the D.A. that she wasn’t worried. She wasn’t worried because she knew that he wasn’t going to prison.
After a three-month trial, just as the D.A. had predicted, Nick was found not guilty due to lack of evidence and the states’ inability to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. When the not guilty verdict was read, Marilyn smiled and quietly walked out of the courtroom. She had done exactly what the district attorney had told her to do. She had prepared for the not guilty verdict, and she had also prepared for something else.
Even though Nick was found innocent, he was more or less treated like an outlaw who had escaped justice. But a week after the trial was over, Marilyn called him. He was delighted to hear her voice, and even more jubilant when she asked if they could talk. His prayers had been answered. He told her that he could be over in a few minutes but she said, “actually, I have an errand to run, so I will come pick you up.”
She drove to Nicks’ house, and smiled at him as he got into her car. He told her how happy he was that she had called, and asked if she wanted to go somewhere and get something to eat, and maybe they could talk. She said, “yes, but first, I have to pick up something at my house.”
When they pulled into the garage, Marilyn invited him to come in. She asked if he would like a glass of wine before they went to dinner. She had already crushed three Valium into a glass and carefully stirred the wine as she poured. Nick offered a toast to “friendship and forgiveness.” Marilyn played her part well as she smiled and echoed the toast.
It wasn’t going to be long before the drug took effect so she coyly asked him if she had ever shown him the room where Eric practiced his music. He said, “no, but I’d very much like to see it.” She said, “it’s this way.” They descended the stairs into the basement and as she opened the door, she said, “we had it completely sound-proofed so his music wouldn’t disturb the neighbors. We always called it ‘the silent room’.”
When she turned on the light, Nick said, “this is a music room? It looks more like a hospital room.” He walked over to the barber chair, and as Marilyn began telling him its history, he said he suddenly felt dizzy.
When he became less steady on his feet, Marilyn helped him to a large workbench that had been turned into a makeshift operating table. She told him to lie down while he tried to get his bearings, but he soon lost consciousness.
A few hours later and still groggy, he opened his eyes and realized that he was naked and had been strapped to the table. Marilyn leaned over and said, “hello Reverend. Hello, man of God. But you’re not a man of God are you? A man of God would never do what you did. You couldn’t have me, so you took the only thing I had left. The only thing that gave me a reason to want to live, and I don’t care what your attorney or the jury or the judge said. I know you murdered my child, and that makes you a monster.”
Nick said, “I swear to God, Marilyn. I never touched Erica. You have to believe me.” Before he could finish, she casually said, “I’m going to have to perform a few procedures before we get started.” A terrified Nick asked what kind of procedures she was talking about. Marilyn said, “for now, just a cath in your penis and a feeding tube in your stomach. Tomorrow, I’ll give you a colostomy. Those things are necessary before I can continue my work, but don’t worry. I’m a doctor and I’m very good at what I do.”
She taunted Nick as she almost playfully lined up the scalpels, clamps, and syringes. She was intentionally rough when inserting the cath, and he cried out in pain. She asked, “did my child cry out in pain like that while you were beating her?”
With a grimace on his face, he said, “Marilyn, please. I’m begging you. Don’t do this.” She looked down at him and said, “was my child begging you to stop while you were torturing her?”
Emotionless she said, “okay, monster. The cath is in, and now it’s time for the feeding tube. Regretfully, you will only receive a local anesthetic for this.” After a few seconds, she said, “actually, maybe you won’t.”
Before she made the incision, she smiled and said, “this might hurt a little.” Nick screamed. She said, “did my child scream while you were strangling her? She didn’t did she? She couldn’t could she? She couldn’t, because you had your hands around her throat. My hands aren’t around your throat, so you can scream all you want. No one is going to hear you.”
Nick pleaded with her to listen to him. He said, “Marilyn, you are making a terrible mistake.” She ignored his pleas and as she took off her gloves, said, “okay, monster. All done…for now. Tell me. Are you in any pain?” Nick, gasping for breath and almost in shock, said, “yes.”
“Are you cold?” she asked. A shivering Nick answered yes. Marilyn said, “do you think my child is cold, laying six feet underground?” Turning to walk out of the room, she asked, “are you afraid?” Again, Nick said that he was. Marilyn asked, “do you think my child was afraid?”
“Are you going to kill me?” asked Nick.
Marilyn bent down and softly said, “no. I’m not going to kill you. I’m just going to make you wish that I had.”
To be continued_____________________________