Life only really has one beginning and one end and the rest is just a whole lot of middle. I'd always wondered how I would die… I had always thought I would die heroically, for example, in the place of someone I loved… What a waste, I had so much I wanted to do, so many places I wanted to see. Too little, too late.
Walking idly by, I barely noticed how golden the leaves on the trees were or the unseasonal chill. Desperate for a quick way home to my family's slice of the 'American Dream', I took a short cut through the corn field which I used to play in as a child. It was an unpredictable thing to do for a decidedly predictable person. It wasn't unpredictable enough however…
As I looked into the eyes of my killer, I could see the serene steadiness inside of him. The calmness of his voice, the way his gaze never faltered and his hands never shook. This had been planned; he had always known I was the target. It wasn't a simple case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. It always was me, simple-minded, stupid old me; I just didn't know it, not until now. I didn't move, I didn't scream, no one would ever hear me. I couldn't escape; this place is like an underground prison. Instead, I stood there in his grasp, bracing for the blow, waiting for the inevitable to happen. Tick, tick, tock
As I held her there, I could see the fear in her deep blue eyes, the moment of sudden realisation that this would be the place where she would meet her end. My plan had worked so well, she came so easily, running jovially like a lamb headed for the slaughter. I could smell the faint flowery aroma on her skin. Just a naïve little girl, too curious to say 'no' for once. I couldn't contain the smile that crept across my face; the plan had worked so well and the culmination of all this work was almost too enticing to bear…
I couldn't contain it. I was willing myself not to struggle. Instinct overcame me in that second. I was an animal in a trap, running in circles, trying to break free.
'there's no way out'
The thought kept on creeping back into the fore ground of my already frantic mind.
I could see that now there were no options, I had to revert back to my initial strategy, the animal instinct inside of my growled but I was still, bracing myself for the blow that seemed to take forever to strike.
The word escaped my lips but he was not one to be merciful or toss his intentions aside, I had known this all my life, he was the strange man who lived in the strange house across the street. A neighbour who had hid such a conceited plan, right under everyone's noses.
It took what seemed like an age but I did it, I broke free. For the first time I spread my wings like a bird taking flight. The feeling was glorious! I kept on going, why wasn't he chasing after me? I noticed my father call to me but as I screamed back he made no recognition, it was as if he couldn't see me, couldn't hear me. I was in some sort of hellish reality and somehow, deep down, I knew that part of me, the most important part, was stuck behind in the underground prison, never to see the light of day again..
It was done. Mission accomplished or so they say. She stopped struggling after a minute or two, as I felt her heart flutter and fade like a butterfly in a jar which has lost all hope of flying free in the breeze one last time. She flopped to the ground like a ragdoll, like so many others; but here she is, my prize, my most gleaming trophy of all. For the first time in quite a few years, I can go to sleep satisfied, free to live another day..
My name is Salmon, like the fish. First name Susie. I was 14 years old when I was murdered on December 6 1973. I was here for a moment, and then I was gone. I wish you all a long and happy life.