“From A Gunman’s Journal”

​​The road behind me was broad, and lit and warm. The road before me narrowed down with a sombre incandescence. It was cold; the road that awaited.

Looked behind to see the path trailing off, fading out. 

I continued to walk. I continued thinking the road will come to an end, but it didn’t.

It went on narrowing, but it never ended.

Family. Family was all that was thought of. My boy; the little kid was in 4th. His mother, my lady used to serve me rice and meat, seasoned with the best spices. All veiled, she looked pretty. The black eyes with winged eyelashes were seductive. She was the prettiest woman to me. She was beautiful only within the perimeters of the bedroom. To me, prettiness and beauty are two separate things which people mistake to be the same. People. They are fools. And it is exactly why I am here.

Beautiful was someone else. In her heart. In her behavior. Whom I actually loved. My first missus. For whom, my love and fondness exceeded all bodily affections. 

Never did I have the intention of marrying again. But, these old ladies in the precinct and at my place. You know how old relatives and their baseless logics are. You know how conventional their mindsets are, how unprogressive and old-school they are. School. Yeah. My father never sent me to one.

When I was 19, he told me to marry, and have children. He told me a girl is fine, but I must have at least 3 boys. And when my wife proved unproductive, he said, “Abandon her”, for it is so easy to marry and divorce around there.

I married again, the pretty lady. And had kids. Two boys and no girls.

They were sent to the school in our area and one infernal day, there was a loud noise.

And my boy was brought wrapped in cloth, with red all over. With 3 bullet marks on his tiny body.

The other kid was never sent to school after that. Because of what happened to his brother and also because the school was in ruins.

We spent three days crying, and beating the chest, and praying to the almighty for his reincarnation. That deserves a loud laughter. We lost touch with reality.

When I was 21, my father handed me a tool which was a little heavy for me then. Now, I’m fine with it, because it’s all in my day’s work. Like a spade to a digger, an axe to a cutter, a hammer to a smith  and like a sickle to a farmer.

It needs oiling sometimes. And needs to be used stealthily. But everything is open around there. It is like a badge of honour in there.

Climbed up hills, jumped from the top, hung down from the ropes and dipped into the cold water. Fixed a board. Pulled a lever with the index finger and it was the bullseye that was drilled.

The road behind me was broad, and lit and warm. The road before me narrowed down with a sombre incandescence. It was cold; the road that awaited.

When I was about to start walking, the destination seemed bright and beautiful. We were told that it is so. And there were young adults like me, who were led to believe so. Who started walking with me.

We were to be given lots of money and rewards worth much more. We were lied to. The people out there lied. People. They are fools. And it is the reason why I am stuck here.

We were told to be strong, physically and mentally, and that all what we were doing was to reach the almighty. They said this crusade against unbelievers would help us regain the long lost glory. They said that our species was being made a target and that in order to save it from extinction we were to do it. And since then, our tools spoke.

Red all over the floor, the walls. Screams all around, the damned unbelievers cried in agony. And I went on pulling the lever until the foolish people were drilled.

I am here for the people.

I kept on pulling the trigger, and kept on reloading the tool until there were heaps of dead bodies.

Their fresh blood and their luscious cry, made me happy to the fullest that I was doing some good work and master will be pleased, and my father back at home will be proud.

But, they lied. There is no going to heaven after all this. Maybe I could do something more for master and my father. But my father has a large cult following. He will send more.

But I don’t want my only son left to join, because I know there is no going to heaven. I want him to study and be a successful man. And marry and have kids. Girls, or boys- it doesn’t matter to me. 

And my wives. I hope they’re fine. I don’t want them to miss me. I love them.

A kid outside the court called me a monster. A lady beside him was in tears and she was looking at me and murmuring as if cursing.

My father calls me son. My son calls me father. Some call me a militant. Some call me a gunman. Some say I’m a terrorist. And some say I am not human.

I have lost my identity.

It’s all a lie. Species, and borders made me end up here. I will be counting seconds now. But not for long. Tomorrow 4 in the morning, they’ll put a mask on my face and make a noose around my neck. I will start suffocating and my body will start shaking. They’ll pull a lever, just like me, but a larger one, and the noose will tighten. They’ll hang me.

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