I’m a murderer.
I’m 16 and I’m a murderer.
People say that saying something that’s bothering you out loud makes it better but we all know that’s a lie. It doesn’t make it better. Saying your best friend died doesn’t lessen the pain, saying your partner left doesn’t fill their empty space and saying you feel guilty about a crime doesn’t make you any more innocent. It gives others the opportunity to judge you behind a kind mask of sympathy… or in my case, makes them run out, screaming, calling the cops so they’d arrest you.
But who says they don’t have that right?
The guy I killed was about my age. Went to my school. Lived in my neighborhood. But he spent endless hours enjoying himself by psychologically torturing people, stuffing their heads into toilets, even physically beating them up until they bled from the ears… which included me.
So I killed my bully, but that doesn’t make it any better.
He had a family. Parents who loved him and raised him with love, tears and all those things only mothers and fathers understand. And I took their pride and joy and squished him under my sneakers.
But I’m not a Norman Bates, I didn’t do it for kicks and neither am I a hero, defending the weak or even myself. I am a coward. And I’m not even going to deny that. I killed him and then ran away from my life, as I couldn’t get out of the hole I’d dug myself into.
How did I kill him? I honestly don’t know. Books don’t usually explode.
You see, all I did was throw my book at him. I was tired, my head felt like exploding and after managing to convince myself for 5 months that his constant taunts didn’t matter, I finally snapped.
And apparently I snapped harder than I ever imagined.
I threw the book, expecting a shout, a turning around and a punch straight to my face but instead I was met by flames and the horrible sound of an explosion.
Now… it could’ve been a bombing. A frustrated student may have decided to blow up the school he hated rather than going on a killing spree with a gun he easily acquired. Maybe a terrorist attack on one of the public high schools in a town in the middle of nowhere. Except it wasn’t.
When something big happens in your life, your brain records it with full detail. It’s wrong that they say that you suddenly see things in slow motion… the memory becomes so vivid, so lifelike and so fatally painful that it burns into your brain and every time you remember it, the wound opens again and you feel like you’re reliving it.
So I remember everything. I remember standing just a few feet away from him as his head erupted in flames. I remember the horrified scream that escaped his lips and disappeared just as quickly when his throat detonated. I saw the flames, the heat and the energy that threw his friends and innocent passing students slamming unto the walls, burning their skin and clothes as their screamed, shielding their faces. I saw how my book burned the hallway, injuring everyone inside and killing one of them.
And I was not even scratched.
I stood only a few feet away, I saw the flames, I heard the blast and felt the energy but I didn’t move. I wasn’t thrown back. I did not even feel the heat, I was not burned. My clothes were fine, my face felt normal and I still had all my hair.
I guess that’s enough proof.
I stared around in horror. Students screaming, crying, vomiting, those who could run trying to escape. I smelt the burnt flesh, my ears ringing with the moans and screams; I saw the remains of Garry Trask on the floor, on his friends and even on me. I stood glued to spot; unable to look away from the hell I’d created because there was nothing else to look at.
But something that can blow up a hallway doesn’t exactly stay frozen. Again, being the coward that I am, I run out of the hall. I don’t stand to help; I don’t do anything to fix the mess I’ve made… I just run away and hide. I regret it now of course, now that I understand why and where I got that curse, but I couldn’t bear it. How could you possibly handle seeing all that pain and knowing you’d caused it and still make the righteous choice? My nerves aren’t made of steel, and at that moment I was sure that I was on the brink of madness.
I run out of the hall, passing from in between all the people rushing in to the place of the explosion. Those brave people who run to the aid of the survivors, those brave people who are too worried to acknowledge my weak but unharmed stature as I leave my dignity behind for them to maybe find it as I pass them.
And when I came to a clearing, everything came rushing at me. A pain I felt everywhere, sewn to every molecule of my being, a pain no painkiller could take away. I felt guilt.
A guilt that stomping on my stomach, punching my bones and eating up my throat, making me unable to breathe.
Then I remember my twin brother, Casey, rushing to me as I collapsed on the pavement. I remember the worry and fear in his brown and amber heterochromia eyes, matching mine, as he looked at me, shaking me, shouting whether I was okay or not… But I couldn’t hear him. The whole thing was replaying it self in my mind, every detail magnified and every second of it burning my heart as tears streamed down my cheeks. I felt broken, I felt pathetic, I felt inhuman. All I wanted was to rest in the safety of his warm embrace.
And that was my second mistake.
I watched as his sweater blazed as I put my hands on his shoulder. I screamed as he fell back, shocked as he tried to put out the flames. I ran to him as he screamed at the top of his lungs. And I put out the flames that were eating his skin with my jacket as the wails of several ambulance sirens came closer.
After that was all a blur. I don’t remember how they got me and Casey into the ambulance, I don’t remember when I gave them my parents’ number and I don’t remember how long it took for us to get to the hospital… All I did was cry, looking at my injured brother as I dealt with another memory eating inside me. I don’t know how I managed not to touch anything else, but I flinched when they offered me a blanket, I refused to take their hand for support as I kept mine firmly in the pockets of my jacket. And when we arrived at the hospital I couldn’t accompany him anymore as they took him to one of the emergency rooms, leaving me behind as nurses and doctors ran from patient to patient, treating as many as they could.
And in the middle of all that chaos, I stared at my hands. Those knobby hands with thin and long fingers that had caused all that mayhem… and at that moment I wanted to rip them apart.
So I kept quiet and walked to a corner, sitting with my head down as I tried to pull myself together.
Whatever my hands did, they didn’t work on me or my clothes. I put a hand to my face, cleaning some of the dried blood off my face.
Garry’s Blood… I felt like throwing up. I just realized that my clothes, face and hair were covered in dried blood slowly on the way of turning black…
Black as the goo that soaked me last night.
My eyes widen as I remember, the carnival, the crowd, the fireworks that me and Casey had smuggled in… and of course the goo. The black goo that started to fall as soon as the creepy guy said something… What did he say? What…
“You’ll be changed… You’ll join us-” and that’s when the firecrackers had exploded in my hands, and then I fell hands-first into a pile of goo… and my hands were alright. No wounds, no cuts, no blood. My hands were perfectly fine.
It was the goo. It had to be. It must’ve done something with the genes.
Now that was impossible, stupid even… But so were exploding books and sweaters.
Wait. What am I doing? I’m in the hospital. My brother’s burned; I’ve killed a human and injured several more… I’ve got blood on my hands, enough to drown me and my world in.
I’m a murderer. And it’s only a matter of time before I hurt someone again.
So instead of looking for my parents, I run home. I keep my hands in my pockets, run past people trying to avoid them.
I go home, pick up a pair of my recently used pair of gray woolly gloves and pack a bag… I’d leave a note, but what for?
“Sorry mom and dad, I accidentally blew up the hallway and not Casey’s half-dead because of my mess?”… No.
It’s better this way.
Now, what I did wasn’t heroic. I didn’t sacrifice my comfort in order to save the people I loved… I ran away to not sabotage anything even further. I ran away because I wouldn’t have to face it everyday. It wasn’t selfless, it was entirely selfish. My parents will worry nonstop, my brother will be confused and they’ll call the police to find me…
But it’s better than burning alive.
Looking back at it now, as I’m sitting by the window in the house of a newly found fellow “freak” friend, I know that I can’t run forever. The past is already creeping up my neck…
This new friend, Susan, being an abuse counselor in training is helping me as she says “I’ve been hurting myself.”… And her first advice is for me to write. Now, it doesn’t make it any better. It brought the memories back, and God know how much I cried again… but I don’t know. Writing I helped to see it from a different perspective… noticing what a coward I was.
Now, I can’t undo the past. That stain will haunt me forever… but I may get some good out of it. There’s a team of people like me, but they use their powers for good. They save people, help them even though they might not appreciate them, they help them despite the fact that they have enemies with unimaginable cruelty, but they’re selfless. Something I could use a little right now.
I don’t know what to write anymore… Susan’s mom is calling us for down for dinner so I have to conclude this chapter here… But trust me, I’m not even close to finished with boring you out of your mind.
Adios now, I guess.