I’m a train wreck that happened in my youth, so all of you social do-gooders are pretty much stating the obvious…OF COURSE, the early family scene plays a huge part in what a male and female grow up to be. That other stuff you psychologists and sociologists talk about a lot, the DNA that makes each person unique, I can’t say much about that.
All I know is my real Daddy took a long hike and never came back – still don’t know him, don’t know where he is, and damned well don’t want to know…very likely, in hell or the cell next to me for all I know.
My Momma, she hurt a lot, emotional-wise and money-wise. She cried uncontrollably when the state folks came and took me away because she couldn’t afford to keep me.
Momma hooked up with wily bastard Eddie Nixon about six months into my stay at the state institution. That sumbitch AD (After Daddy) was all okay for about three days after Momma came to that state-run home for kids and took me to the new house…just a hop, skip, and jump from the place whence the state people picked me up.
The fourth day was a ‘lulu’! And, every other day after that got worse – a whole lot worse.
I was five years old at the time, playing with my favorite little toy truck Momma brought me weeks back at the state-place. Making that sound kids mimic for an engine sound and pulling my truck on a string I was just inside the house at the front door.
Suddenly, the front door came inward slamming me against the wall, bringing some sharp pains to my head, legs, and shoulder. I did what kids do in moments of pain. I cried, well, maybe there were a few screams as well.
It was Eddie Sumbitch and he didn’t like my making all the noise, grabbed me roughly by the arm and threw me against the facing wall. Now, I was really screaming, terrified this mean sumbitch was going to kill me. The words he used cursing me came between full-swinging slaps on face, head, and anywhere else they just happened to land.
Momma was out back taking clothes off the line, heard my loud screams and crying, came running in yelling my name. When she saw the wacko sumbitch whacking me, Momma started crying, screaming, and trying to pull him away from me.
Sumbitch slammed me to the floor and goes after Momma. For me, it was a scene of horror, and I curled into a fetus position against the wall, covered my ears with my small hands, still screaming with my tears falling in heavy drops onto the floor.
Without going into all the loud cursing, name-calling, and the bad beating Momma took, I stopped breathing or something. The next thing I knew Momma was holding me as I looked up at her split lips, dark swollen eyes, and purple cheeks. When she saw me starting to cry again, Momma swayed me back and forth in her arms and promised me everything was going to be all right.
But everything didn’t get all right.
The beatings of Momma and of me continued, and we stayed in a vacuum of fear. Momma was afraid to go to the police because sumbitch might kill us.
I made it into my teens, even made high school for a year before dropping out. My bullying, my stealing, my fighting, and my bad treatment of girls started sometime in my early teens, and through all these terrible events I carried my hatred of Eddie…plus a great amount of fear. It’s hard to believe, I suppose, that a convict like me would have fear of someone. The memory, the brain, and the emotions can collide in mysterious ways.
My mother died from one of Eddie’s beatings, and he was not held accountable by the court.
That brings me to the reason for this brief life sketch and my incarceration.
One night, the brain, the memories, and the fear all joined together with several rounds of straight bourbon to bring me to one clear purpose.
That night I resolved to kill Eddie Nixon.
It took me two days to find him in another state, remarried and doing what he did best…abusing the woman and her kids. When I knocked on the door, the woman who answered was bruised like Momma, and her two kids were cowered in the corner of the living room.
I waited in my car until Eddie’s car pulled to the curb in front of his house. He opened the car door, saw me, started to make his move when I hit him on the head with a heavy wrench. I dragged him to my car, stuffed him in the trunk, tied him up, and drove to a predetermined spot in the country.
There, I tortured him in ways I won’t mention until he was crying for mercy. That’s when I put my hands around his throat and choked him. It took him three minutes of struggling before he died.
Okay, the truth! I did it, and I’m glad I did it – for Momma and for me!
This is where I deserve to be, here in this tiny barred cell...not only because of sumbitch but all the other bad things I did.
I tortured and murdered a man, and forgive me, world, but I can live perhaps too easily with that fact.
Guess I cannot do much serious thinking about how my life might have gone with different genes and had my environment been different…
You ‘social folks’ can ponder on that.
Flash Fiction by: Billy Ray Chitwood
January 16, 2017
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