Caressing the full bottle of pills, rolling it along his fingertips in his hand, he stared at the clock. Paul Jenkins waited for the second hand of the ticking object to turn to the twelve to make it 8:00 and kept contemplating what his worth of living was. Every second grew a deeper thought of distraught and complete bitterness and made the task of killing himself much more easier. Time had always been important to him. Especially if what he was doing was important. The bottle of pills sitting in his right hand was what was going to end his life and it had to be done at the right time for his living satisfaction. Paul was so tired, of not only living, but of himself. Of being taunted by his unwelcome thoughts and obsession with having everything done perfectly and on time. His problems were more than ordinary, and he did not want to be responsible for them anymore. He sat on the cold, tan colored counter in his contemporary bathroom next to the freestanding bathtub and opened window, staring at the clock; waiting another four minutes before it was time to take his own life. Tuning out the voices in his head, and the ticking of the clock, he focused in on the sounds of the birds sitting on the tree outside of the window to make his last minutes somewhat peaceful. The chatters of the little black animals brought back a time of what he believed to be heroism.
Paul was reminded of the day he let some birds free. That say in November he took exactly 2,067 steps to work. The chilly wind had ruffled his strawberry blonde hair and he was worried about having to fix it once he arrived to his destination. Leaves were in the process of turning orange and the air smelled gloomy. It had been his third month at the pet shop where Paul felt absolutely normal around the animals. He related to how sheltered they were, not being able to speak, and tuning out whatever was around them. Making an entrance through the automatic doors, Paul did the same exact thing he did everyday: slowly takes 39 steps to the employee lounge, throws on his name tag in exactly three seconds, takes off his coat in five, and does not say one word to anyone unless he has to. Working as the maintenance man is easy for him because he is only given a timesheet and work order form, and does not need to communicate with anyone but look at the animals on his free time. Paul looked out of the window of the lounge into the pet store and watched all of the animals anxiously. Each and every one of them looked as tired and depressed as he did. All along the walls were animals such as cats, dogs, reptiles, fish, bugs, and birds. He specifically watched the different kinds of birds in the metal cages that only contained a pinch of food, a few drops of water, and a little stand for them to bristle on. While Paul fidgeted with his name tag and gave a thoughtful itch to his head, he decided without a second thought to run out of the lounge doors and go to the birds. Frantically, he pulled the latch of the cages and let every single bird free. He ran to the main entrance and watched of them fly away with the wind, seeing only what their wings were made for. Paul Jensen was envious of the birds because of how bad he wanted to be free. However, he never felt so good because he let them go and felt like a hero.
Still caressing the bottle of pills and staring at the clock, Paul blinked a few times to snap back into reality and realized the time was 7:59am. He had one minute before it was his time to feel absolutely and completely normal. Setting the bottle down on the counter and wiping off his off his sweaty palms, he popped off the cap of the bottle labeled Paroxetine for OCD and Depression. Paul took three deep breaths and counted exactly all of the twenty-five pills, dumping each one into the opposite hand. He hopped off of the counter and sat in front of his bathtub. Bringing his hand to his mouth, Paul let every little pill fall into it and swallowed them, hard and painful as it was. He propped his head against the side of the tub, relaxing his fingers, arms, legs, and neck because of how fast the pills were detoxifying him. His attention drew back to the chirping of the birds, and he grinned.
Because just like the birds, he was finally free.