I stare at the blank sheet of paper in front of me, as though if I concentrate hard enough, the words will write themselves. After several moments of intense focus produces nothing I decide to give my memory another chance to redeem itself. A paragraph, I beg myself, a sentence or two. Just enough to prove you remember. With a sigh I pick up my pen, hovering it above my page. I close my eyes, letting the soothing sound of the rain on the roof relax me. I open them and begin to write.
It had been raining that day too, only a lot worse. I’d stood on the quadrangle listening to my boyfriends stuttering excuses of how he’d been drunk, disorientated, hadn’t known what he was doing. All the while rain had soaked us, washing down my face to mingle with my tears, camouflaging them from him. I never spoke a word, all through his rushed explanation. Eventually he realised it wasn’t doing any good and gave up with a helpless shrug of his shoulders. The school was emptying around us, everyone rushing for the dry warmth of their cars, books held up to shield their hair and faces, but still we stood, a silent standoff. I ended it a few minutes later, turning on my heel and walking away without looking back even once. He didn’t try to stop me.
Hours later, I checked my phone, and was greeted with a dozen missed calls accompanied by half as many voicemail messages. I deleted them, not bothering to listen to them. The pain of his betrayal was slowly ebbing, giving way to an eerie numbness.
That night, I lay in bed, reflecting on how my life had changed since that morning. In essence, it had followed the same pattern as every other day before. A sort of peace had settled over my mind, washing away the last of the hurt and leaving only emptiness behind. If only, I thought, he could have apologised. But, he didn’t. He wasn’t sorry. But he would be.
When I awoke the next morning, the sky had cleared along with my mind. I now had a plan, to avenge my broken heart. It was simple. Six years ago, when my father had left us, my mother had gone through a self protection phase. This resulted in a fancy security system and a shiny new shotgun hidden in her underwear draw. Perfect for shooting herself with should we be robbed. My mother was hopeless in many aspects, a major one being motherhood. I rarely saw her, and children had to entertain themselves somehow, which was how I came to learn basic gun control. Very basic, self taught gun control. My plan was; hijack the gun, meet up with my ex and explain to him how very sorry he was. From there on was improvisation. As I said, ‘simple.’ I got up to retrieve the gun, finally calling my ex back to arrange a meeting. As I calmly wandered about, it never occurred to me there was something very wrong about hammering out the details of a plan to murder.
When I arrived at school, he had already been there, pacing the same three metres over and over impatiently. He opened his mouth to speak, but stopped when the light flashed off my gun. A second after I pulled it on him, he recognised the weapon, freezing. My head started to throb. He was looking at me with concern and it was eating away at my resolve. The gun shook and suddenly I was pelted with an onslaught of memories. Two years worth of unwavering loyalty and unconditional love raced through my mind with the force of a freight train. Who was I kidding? How could I kill the boy I’d professed to love for so long? My plan changed, lighting quick. He read the intention in my eyes and leapt toward me, just as the gun pressed against my temple. He wouldn’t be fast enough though, I thought, closing my eyes and squeezing the trigger.
My doctor just walked in. He says Scotts here to see me, and that I can stop writing now. Which is good, because my hands cramping up. He sees how much I’ve written and rushes to praise me. I smile faintly as he picks up my work. If it demonstrates progress I might be released next month. Apparently Scott had actually been quick enough, and all due to my mother’s improper gun maintenance. The trigger had been stiff. My mother’s as indifferent as ever, but Scott comes to visit me nearly every day. He understands I wasn’t well, and I understand he was drunk in the pool house with Kendra. Acceptance isn’t forgiveness, but we’re getting there. Scott knocks on my door shyly and my doctor beckons him in, smiling at me like he knows something I don’t. And with my memory? Odds are he does.