Act of Kindness

can a bullet be kindnesssHe sat staring at the small semi-automatic pistol laying on the kitchen table.  He had been staring at it for a long time.  Thinking.  Deciding.  He knew what needed to be done.  The pain had to stop.  Her pain had to stop.  He hated what was happening to her, but he was powerless to prevent it.

He picked it up, a shiver ran up his arm and a small voice nagged at him in the back of his mind, “Wrong.” it said, “This is wrong.”  Normally, he would agree.  But life had taken a turn.  She was suffering.  He had to stop the suffering.  He loved her, he had to help her.

“I wonder if this will hurt her.”   He whispered as he fingered the gun, getting accustomed to the hard, coldness of it.  “Not for long, then she will be better.  No more pain. This is kindness.”

He pushed the tears and the uncertainty aside, stood up and walked out the front door.  He marched up the forest path to her favorite place.  She liked the serenity of the clearing in the deep woods and the tall, straight poplars, the birdsong.  His feet crunched in the dry leaves, doubt welled, he pushed it back and marched on.  It had to be done.

He rounded a bend and saw the lounge chair she liked to sit in and think.

A single shot rang through the woods.

It took them 3 days to find his body.

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9 Comments

    1. I would really like to know, oh revered master of twisted endings, did you see it coming? This was another of those cerebral burps, but it fascinated me enough I thought it was worth sharing.

    2. The impression I got as this thing spooled though my brain was that he is some sort of lout: perhaps an alcoholic, wife-beating, gambling addict or something. But somewhere he has a conscience, and when not possessed by the demon drink he feels love and compassion for her. I suspect she will be relieved. Eventually.

  1. Either a great opening or a nice bit of flash.

    At first I figured his wife was sick, then when he started walking thru the woods, I thought the she might be a dog, then it went back to wife. But he shot himself. Nice bunch of twists.

    1. Oh, a dog — I hadn’t even considered that! Nice bit of observation, Mary!

      This is all there is to this one. I suppose someone more talented with fiction could go back and build a story about what led up to this event – one of those human tragedy stories. Definitely not my forte’. Now that I’ve gone back and read it again I’m not happy with some of the wording. Sloppy. It would need tweaking to do anything more with it. The sense I had as it spooled out of my brain was that it needed to be very, very brief. Flash fiction. Were I to wax eloquent it would read better. Thanks!

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