It was only afterward that I realized what I’d done. All the goading, the lies, the plots and schemes, led to this moment. Had he wanted this? Him, gasping out his last, pink breath through ruined lungs; me, standing over him with the murder weapon, barrel hot, fingerprints guaranteed. Did he hate me that much?
A distant siren sounded on the edge of my hearing, just as my eyes picked out the first lightening of the sky with coming dawn. And I ran. I ran all of two steps. I don’t know if he let out a death rattle or a rasping giggle, but it stopped me. He wanted this. Me on the run, with nothing, scared every second of my remaining, probably-short life.
He’d already won. Life as I knew it was over—friends, family, resources. Gone. I’d already lost. Did that mean I was going to let him shoot the moon?
No. Fucking. Way.
I put the gun down, sat on the floor, and listened to the sirens get louder while I watched the sun come up.