You look shocked. Did you think people like me couldn’t be killers? Maybe when I asked, ‘Do you want to know a secret?’ the last thing you thought I’d tell you was that I took his life. I imagine you see me as more likely a victim than aggressor. Weak. Not having it in me. Actually, that would have been a good assessment of me, until the day I killed him.
But I’m not the evil one. He had preyed on me from when I was very young. Used my naivety, my fear of consequences, some real, but so many invented, to keep me weak. He’d made me keep a secret I could never tell because of the damage it would do. He’d said my mother wouldn’t believe me. No one would ever look at me the same way again. I believed some wouldn’t look at me at all. So, in the end, that’s why I did it.
It’s odd, isn’t it? I tell you that, and don’t worry at all about how people will judge me. But I will never be able to tell anyone all that he did to me because I knew I couldn’t take the judgement that would follow. They’d say, ‘It must be lies. Not him. He was such a lovely man.’ You see, he didn’t just groom me.
Who do you think is worst? Him or me? Yes, I took his life, but he really had already taken mine. I know I’m still breathing, and he isn’t, but he stole my childhood. He made me an adult unable to form or keep relationships. He trapped me in a past with no future. But even though he tortured me, when I killed him, I didn’t make him suffer. What he did to me was slow and dirty and I felt it all. I still do. I believe I always will. What I did was quick. It was clean. He can’t have felt a thing. So, which of us is worst?
I can see you’re not sure. Well, I am, and I should have done it earlier. For so long I thought that life couldn’t be different. That he could do as he pleased with me and there wasn’t anything I could do to stop him. I never dreamed there could be a breaking point, or there would come a day when I would reach mine. But a day dawned when I knew it couldn’t go on. It had to stop. He had to die.
I can’t read your face. I don’t know if you pity me or if I disgust you. I don’t know if you’re glad I told you I killed him, or if you wish it was something you hadn’t heard. But you understand it’s a secret I couldn’t keep, don’t you? And it’s not guilt or remorse that made me tell you. I just couldn’t carry a second secret. The load would be too great. I’ve carried too much for too long.
About the author
Tony writes primarily for the stage, but has had stories published in a number of anthologies as well as People’s Friend, Your Cat Magazine and Café Lit. His award-winning plays are published by Lazy Bee Scripts and Pint Size Plays and have been performed across the world. He has just won the UK Community Drama Festivals Federation Geoffrey Whitworth Trophy for the Best Original Script of 2022 with his newest one act play, ‘Normal For.’ You can follow him here - https://www.facebook.com/tonydomaillewriting/