The Violent Martyr

Oh shit, what have I done? And why did I do this? For God? For country? Perhaps it was to bolster my self esteem. I was an outcast, and now I belong. Or I used to belong. Maybe I still do, in some way. But I can’t be with my new friends anymore.

We sat and prayed, asking for divine intervention, a holy path to follow that will lead us to victory in this, our darkest hour. And the only rational answer was itself irrational by logical measures. Only the best, the most devout, may tread sand on this most sacred road to martyrdom. I was lucky enough to be deemed worthy.

Now I can’t feel my legs, but I’m still standing defiantly face to face with my destiny which was assigned to me, and now, we’re intertwined forever. History will hold us in the same terminal breath. I will become legend, a martyr, in the eyes of God and my peers.

His face was like granite. He knew who I was, what I had come to do, though he didn’t know my name. He made no effort to stop me, as if to accept his just punishment. He looked into my eyes, a final atonement for his sins, when I heard a plea for mercy, for compassion.

The air was warm, sweltering and fiery. My temperature was rising, my flesh slowly coming undone, bursting at him and onlookers on the street. It hadn’t occurred to me until now they may join us, him and I, in our first and final meeting. I felt sorry for them, for their families, for their friends.

And what about my family? What would they think of this? What about his family? Would they mourn for him? Surely they would. And while my friends think they deserve what is coming to them, I don’t think they should suffer without reason.

It’s almost over now. It has to be. My skin is tearing higher, I can’t hear the crowd outside this bowl of final rapture, and my eyes are melting. All I can feel is pain – incredible, searing pain like I’ve never known before. And it just keeps worsening. I can only imagine what he must feel – the sudden inferno, the astonishment that I was able to get this close to him, the suffering he was bestowed.

For a moment, I was finally the center of attention. Everyone recognized me, even though no one knew me. Now they are surely screaming and chanting my name in glory. I would have liked to have read the news tomorrow, to see the reactions of my friends, their proud faces.

Then I saw my wife, weeping, sullen, and dying. I’ve left her alone, selfishly, so absorbed in my own moment that I forgot about hers, ours, and our baby girl’s. No one will remember my name tomorrow, even my friends.

I hadn’t changed the world, as I had hoped. I’ve lost it.

The Violent Martyr


Joined January 2008

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