Today I kill a man! The white pillow is placed strategically a few inches over his sleeping face. The dexterity with which I handle the soft weapon towards his face startles even myself. Before I cover his face fully, I look. I stare at the helpless façade. It looks innocent. Full of age innocent. Haggard old man whose morose tendencies have gone with age. The last bits of the barbaric brutal strength are slowly ebbing away as dictated by a combination of a stab wound and the sunset days of life. I know death is the ultimate end of him. Of everyone actually. But the memories are still green in the oils that lubricate the cogs and wheels of my mind. The worst ones flash through my eyes and push away any hesitation that tempts my hand. I have to do this. I cannot let nature take its course. He didn’t! Why should I? With a sudden and resolute exertion of power, I lower the pillow firmly. I can see his face in my mind. I can see its features struggling to support the pillow. I want to crash them. With the left palm, I aim for the part directly above the nose. I feel the nasal cartilage struggling resiliently. The right elbow lies on the part of the pillow covering the mouth. How I wish this pillow was black in color. Hospitals should set rooms with dark things for people who have lived dark lives. Anyway, white will do for now. With one foot slightly supported by the bed and the other acting as a pillar rooted to the cold ICU floor, I make my last move. A move of Power. Finally, I am the powerful one in the room. I am enjoying this! But wait…
There is nothing powerful about domestic violence
“Do it. Just do it son!” a voice pierces through my ears. It sounds like it is coming from all over the room. Do you know those dreamy sounds that come to you and you cannot pinpoint from where they come? This was one. “I knew you had it in you. But can you actually pull it off?” the ghostly voice goes on. With every word, there is a tinge of bitter clarity that comes to my mind. Other sounds then join in a crescendo. First, distant electronic beeps. Shuffling of high heel shoes along hollow corridors follow.
“Whatever your reasons, son, do you think doing it will make you feel better?”
Its absolutely clear now. I am standing in the room. A hospital room. His weak self is lying on the bed wired to the toes with the intensive care items. He is struggling to talk to me. The dream is gone. Reality is even worse. I have a white pillow in hand with the face of a killer. My abnormally sinewy hands are ready for action. It’s like I just had an out of body experience in which somebody ended up dead.
“Don’t just stand there you little brat! Be a man and do it” He says. I laugh out loud. I don’t know why. I laugh really loud. My lungs ache and I cough vigorously. I keep laughing. He is surprised. Perplexed, actually.
Then I go quiet. Sudden silence covers the room. The silence that allows you to hear the desperate rhythms of the beating heart as it struggles to get out of the chest and display its contents. Anger. I feel a continuous flow of a salty fluid into my mouth. They are tears. Sob. Long sobs. More sobs. A loud cry. A louder cry. A hysterical cry. My shoulders are low. I look down to the floor and see my shaking knees.
“Are you Okay? I have never seen a man cry like that my entire life” he says, his face brightening at the curious sight.
“There is nothing man about domestic violence!”