Atlas had promised this would be the last. But I knew it wouldn’t be. I didn’t know if he was lying to himself, or just to me- but I knew it wouldn’t be the last. As I approached the lonely street corner I staggered with the intoxication of my own disparity. I’d learned that if I didn’t think about what I was doing then it would be that much easier. God was crying again, and the streets were as lonely as I felt. I was crying again, and the shells would soon be as empty as I felt.
Even in the darkness of the night I could see her beautiful silhouette. She was clinging to her child as if she believed the devil himself might rise to pry him from her hands. She made no attempt to run as I drew nearer. It was hard to believe that the infant in her arms would grow up to become one of the most evil men to ever live. Well, would have grown up to be. They were always evil, at least so said Atlas.
Resolutely, I drew my pistol and pointed. This she expected, but what she didn’t was where I pointed. As I aimed so solemnly at her beloved child, I stared straight into mother’s eyes. “Say Goodbye.”
She closed her eyes as if she herself would be drawing her final breath. And mixed with the heavy rain water were tears that only a mother could cry. And I closed my eyes. “Say Goodbye.” I was doing the right thing, Atlas had assured me. Yet he knew these people I was killing were also killing me. “Say Goodbye.”
With a hole between his eyes, I said goodbye.