Monday, February 16, 2015

The Assassination Attempt

The bullet crashed into the wall two feet away from her head. Her ears rang from the fraternal triplets of sound - the shot, the breach of the sound barrier, and the impact in the wall - but she did not flinch.

"I knew you didn't have it in you," she derided.

The man - well, more boy than his three decades of unpleasant life might otherwise suggest - broke down, crumbling to the floor in a pile of elbows and ankles and knees and tears. He'd failed. His attempt at freedom, the culmination of countless stealthy nights researching, building, planning, all undone by his inability to kill his captor.

Was it his humanity? Was this inability merely the manifestation of the fear of the unknown? The existential angst over freedom - true freedom? Was he, as a member of the human race, more inclined to accept the tortures he knew - the relentless tortures of the flesh - over the tortures of the unknown? The mind-bending prospect that what he would face without her would be solely of his own doing? What choice would any of us make when confronted with the option of no longer having an entity to praise and to blame, to consult and to obey, to shape our very existence and to give form to our reactions. Could any of us kill our god?

Or was it just him. His psychology. His defect.

The woman said his name. Once softly. Once sternly. His sobbing stopped.

"Clean yourself up and have dinner ready in an hour."

"Yes, mother."

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