Stolen With a Leaden Kiss

By , Chantilly, VA
Stolen With a Leaden Kiss


Something from inside compels me to replay the scene the way I would see things at a movie. I can imagine the father waiting until he heard the soft snores of his wife and maybe, if the walls were thin, one of his sons sleep talking. He slowly rises from the bed, careful not to disturb the woman sleeping next to him and reaches for his sock drawer, where he had hid the gun the evening before. Clammy palms clumsily lift the heavy, hard object and experimentally point at the slumbering form of his unsuspecting wife. Somewhere inside of him, his conscience screams at him, telling him it is wrong, wrong, wrong, don’t do it, don’t do it, don’t do it. He hesitates, leaves the room, visits his sons in their bedrooms.

One by one, he observes all their sleeping faces, and slowly, slowly, his mind numbs. He raises the smooth, black object in his hands and his right index finger twitches. A loud bang shatters the quiet of the night like glass. He has no time to gaze at the blood that seeps from the skin of his elder son, and instead moves on to the next room. It is an easy process to follow: aim, breathe in, breathe out, pull the trigger. A second bloodstain spreads from the top of the younger son’s chest. His wife is next - the final connection to his wretched world - and at last, he is ready to draw the curtain. He turns the gun to himself. It is a lot easier to pull the trigger now, after all he has done. One last slip of the finger, one last crack, and the family dreams peacefully, lives stolen with a leaden kiss.

Two days later, the police finally discovered the family in their home. School that next day was quiet. Anyone that dared to speak spoke of how wonderful the two boys had been. Amongst the eighth graders, color was scarce; everyone was clothed in black. I had not known either of the boys personally, but I had seen the younger one sometimes, and in seventh grade, he had been in my Algebra class. I can still remember the silly smile he wore every time I saw him.

People say that suicide is not the answer, yet suicide is an answer, but perhaps it is not the right one. Some people are tired of their lives, weary of stress, exhausted from countless responsibilities, worn thin by work and family. Those people wish to close their eyes in eternal slumber and let someone else suffer such burdens; they assume that death is the only freedom from the tight bonds they bear. If one wishes to take their life, I believe that they have the right to do so because it is their life, and they are the ones who have control over it.

However, the father of the family had no right to steal the lives of his wife and kids as if he had a claim to them. He is not God, nor should he pretend to be Fate. If there truly exists a Hell, he deserves to burn in its flames not because he turned a gun upon himself, but because he turned a gun upon his family.





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