I was awake but the room seemed extremely unfamiliar. I looked around endlessly at the pale white walls and the ceiling. Nothing.
The unfamiliarity scared me immensely. I hated not knowing what was happening.
In an effort to get rid of the annoying feeling, I attempted getting up. But I hardly could, for I was strapped to the bed with tubes running all over and my head felt far too heavy. Exhausted from the tiny effort which seemed Herculean, I sunk back into my pillow. I suddenly became aware of the noises around me. There was a steady beeping sound of something and I could distinctly hear a lot of commotion in the background. The effort, however, had been too much and I dozed off again.
The next time, I woke up to a woman yelling. It sounded far too close and I realized she was in the same room. She was disheveled and her face was contorted with rage and fury while she was screaming at a timid-looking man in a white overcoat. Afraid of interrupting her, I pretended to still be asleep.
“This man deserves to die,” she was saying, “…he killed my husband! Why does he need all this fancy treatment?! You’re a heartless man for helping him live! God knows how many more lives he’ll ruin…”, The man tried calming her down, without much result and gently led her out of the room.
I opened my eyes again when I heard the door click shut. And that’s when it all came back to me.
The murdered husband she spoke of? I had killed him. The memory of watching his body fall motionlessly on the cold cobbled street suddenly came back to me. And in a chain reaction to that, I remembered all the other killings.
The twins in the park, the woman on the footpath, the man riding a bike…
It was me. I had killed them all.
And suddenly, the image of my father flashed before my eyes. Him smiling my favorite smile, his hair neatly parted at the side and his glasses slightly crooked.
And like a drum roll, my whole life passed before my eyes. The bullying, the violence, the drugs and alcohol, watching Mum’s retreating figure from the window, the prison bars…all shadowed with my father’s image.
Suddenly, I felt so small. I felt like a child, wanting my father really badly. And it was as if he was calling out to me, as if he was opening his arms out for a hug. And I wanted that warm hug from him; the one that made me feel nice on the insides, like nothing in the world could hurt me. I wanted to hold his hand and feel protected and safe and I wanted him to pick me up, like he did when I was a child and dust of all the hurt and remorse. I just wanted my father and nothing else mattered. It could not wait any longer.
With one last effort, I reached out for the tube marked ‘Oxygen’ in my chest and pulled it out.
I lay back and watched my father’s image grow brighter as the rest of the world blackened out.
And so finally, peace was restored, with that
One Last Killing.