Can You Really Do It?

May 8, 2008
By Hailey Plum, Kewanee, IL

Can you really do it?

Take one look at the knife clasped loosely in an outstretched hand; anticipate the pain that’s soon to come.

Can you really do it?

It’s not like it’d be very hard, after all. She’s only lying rigid against the dirt, back against the flowers, breath coming in short, asthma attack-like bursts. Blood blossomed from who-really-cared-where and stained the ground beneath her.

But her green eyes are trained on only one thing—you.

Come on, that knife can’t be the only thing you’ve got—that just ain’t like you. You’ve got probably a dozen other weapons hidden in fifty different places just out of eyesight. You could kill her a hundred different ways with your skills and your knowledge—although one would work just fine.

You could kill her, and you’d probably do it happily. But that one question remains: will you?

I mean, it’s not like she’s going anywhere. She’s stuck lying there. An easy kill.

So why are you pausing?

You’ve had no trouble with anything else. So why pause of the final strike?

She doesn’t exactly want death, but she’s not praying for you to spare her life either. She’s just lying there. Waiting. Wondering.

Will you do it?

She’s just staring at the ugly hat that shades you eyes, that gleaming knife in that outstretched hand.

You can’t be rethinking this, can you?

Someone like you? With a conscience? Yeah, right. You’re nothing but a cold-hearted killer. A murderer.

Who said that fields of flowers are peaceful, anyway? This one sure isn’t. The stench of blood mingles with the perfume of flowers in the air. I never really liked either smell. But I bet you meant to choose this place, like the thousand others you’ve chosen before.

You can see the blood’s roots now. Her right temple. Her left side. Left ankle twisted in a way that would be impossible not to be broken. Concussed? Probably. Die of blood loss? Hey, that’s possible too. Her blood stains the earth, but not the flowers. They deny the bloodshed, standing up defiantly against your reign.

She’s not speaking, but close enough. Her entire body begins to shake, and you can definitely hear her gasps for oxygen now.

The wind stirs the flowers, but you don’t feel it. You don’t smell the blood. You can’t. All you can do is stare. Watch. Wait.

Come on, just finish her off. You know you want to. Switch off your knife for a gun; it’s not like she will notice.

Take a look at that pool of blood around her. The shuddering body. She’s going to die.

So why don’t you just finish her?

Don’t let your past deeds catch up to you now. Don’t think back. Just do it. Just do what you were born to do. Kill her.

Kill her like you killed me.

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