The Gun Downstairs

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Mind shrouded in fog. Hard to think. He tried to concentrate, but it was incredibly hard to focus on anything besides the overwhelming "nothingness" consuming him.

Head shaking, fists clenching. A bead of sweat slipped down from his forehead to the side of his cheek. A replacement for the tears he couldn't cry. He let it fall, a dark splatter on his shirt. A fading stain. Still there. Still gone.

Eyes closing, lump in his throat. He longed to be able to tell someone. But he had never been good with words. And how could he explain his thoughts, when every time he tried to bring one up in his mind, it quickly slipped out of his grasp.

Lids flickering, heart racing. Why did he feel so alone? He had friends. He knew that people liked him, enjoyed his presence. He wasn't lonely in the physical sense. But nobody had been able to tell how he was feeling. He'd been like this for months, maybe years now. He couldn't remember. Long enough for someone to tell. So he felt that no one really knew him. Not that they wouldn't care. But they wouldn't understand. He silently yearned for someone to comprehend what words couldn't explain.

Heavy breathing, another trickling bead of cold sweat. He had hidden a gun away in his basement. At the time, he had, he hadn't really understood why he did. The thought of actually using it scared him senseless. What would it be like not to be anymore? What would it be like not to be anymore? What would it feel like to just suddenly... disappear? Free of care, free of emotion? Would it hurt? The questions seemed endless. But now, after months of emptiness, he felt drawn to the weapon. He could almost feel it in his hand. Deadly, but comforting. Could almost imagine the dark metal of the barrel, pressed against his temple. The idea of taking his own life no longer appalled him, but rather appealed.

And with his mind sharpening, his eyes closing in acceptance, he knew he would do it.

Grasping for his thoughts, he tried to remember where his family had gone. He could remember them leaving, the shout of a voice, then the click of a closing door, the crunch of gravel. But, he couldn't recall where they had gone. Did he have enough time to do this now? Did it matter?

No. It didn't. He knew his family would be devastated. It didn't matter when or where he finally did this. It would still hurt them just as much. He wanted to explain why to them, tell them it wasn't their fault. But he didn't know how to write an apology that made up for the life he was stealing.

But he needed to do this. The stairs beckoned, and he answered, feeling and indescribable relief as he neared. The darkness swallowed his footsteps as he traveled down, and with every stair, he gave a little more of himself away. Until there was nothing left to be saved.





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