A siren sounded in the distance. Blaring car sirens broke the silence of the foggy moonless night as a man furtively crept among the bushes by the side of the road. Cars screeched by the bushes in a flash as the man quickly hid behind them. Darkness enveloped him again. Easing himself up, he looked around.
Far ahead in the distance, among the fields he saw the light of a window. Gnashing his teeth because he had hurt his leg while escaping from jail, he braced himself. Hobbling towards the light, he stopped dead in his tracks. In the bushes to his right, something had just moved. Jaws clenched, he waited, all the reminiscences of the bygone days haunting him.Knife clutched in one hand, he raised his arm, when suddenly a mass of brown fur jumped on him. “Lady! What are you doing outside!” he laughed, as the dog licked him all over his face, all fear forgotten, he just lay there thinking about the old days. Must have been a fortnight ago, when wrongly accused of a murder, he had been dragged to the police station and flogged till he cried and every atrocity committed till he wished he could die. Nancy had only stood in the kitchen, her big eyes wide and sad, as he had pleaded his innocence without any avail. Only his little daughter Mary, had been on his side, clutching her mother’s nightgown, she had sobbed,”no not my daddy, please”.
Peering into the window, as he had already reached the house by now, he saw his wife Nancy with her arms around another man and Mary now almost a woman giving him a kiss goodnight. Quickly, he flopped down, his heart heavy with weariness and sadness. Realizing, that life had played a dirty game with him, he could not staunch the flow of tears that had not come to him in so many years, not when he was flogged, not when his parents had disowned him, not even when the judge had declared the sentence of life imprisonment on him.
She was smiling, and they both looked so happy and content, something that he had never been able to give them in all those years that they were together, nor would he ever be. Turning back from the house, he ordered Lady to go back into the house. Uncertain about what he would do now, he trudged into the darkness. Vaguely, he remembered the warehouse where he used to keep his guns.
Walking through the rotting door of the dilapidated warehouse, he picked up a gun and put it in his mouth, the shot that sounded was absorbed in the dullness of the night. Xylographic writings on the wall “Nancy and Peter forever” stared back at the lifeless eyes, now sprawled on the ground. Yet, the lifeless face held a quaint smile. Zigzag blood trails criss-crossed the rotting floorboards.