He Sat There

Rodger sat there. The car was still running, cold and idle. The windows showed signs of defrost, but for the most part, icy particles still clung to the surface of the windshield. When he exhaled vapor rose and dissipated into nothingness. There was an eerie silence around him, a sorrowful sadness without a dash of hope. The red light turned green, but he did not engage the vehicle to move. He sat there without concern.

The pickup truck behind him honked repeatedly, followed by an irritated voice, urging him to move on. But Rodger remained still. He looked down at the revolver gripped in his right hand, it was cold and the smell of the inside of the barrel seeped into his nostrils. The hammer was cocked back and his finger was cautiously resting against it. A tear rolled down his face and landed on the chamber. The coldness of that morning did away with it fast.

He glanced at the rearview mirror, a driver approached him, the same driver who moments ago blared the horn impatiently. He watched him approach, what took less than a minute seemed to stretch out like an hour.

A couple bangs on the glass rang through the interior of the vehicle, dislodging icy particles from the glass surface, running down leaving streaks behind. The driver shouted ’what the hell is you’re problem pal?’ He banged the glass again, revealing more of the blurry figure inside.

A whirring sound was heard, the automatic motor within the passenger door struggled to lower the glass from the cold that froze it in place. After a while, it began to lower slowly. The freezing cold rushed inside swirling at every turn it encountered. A temperature that cold painfully enters a person’s flesh deep into the bone. But for Rodger, there was no pain. He felt no cold, only the numbness of what led him to this point. The window finally came to rest at the base of its frame. He was fully visible now, sitting there, gun in hand, eyes blank without emotion.

The driver backed off at the sight, not knowing whether to say something or run for his life. He suddenly realized that his spurt of anger might end up costing him dearly. Rodger looked up at him slowly, he studied his body language and the fear that rushed through his face. He stared at the driver for a long time, then slowly raised the revolver. Immediately the driver’s face became pale and felt his knees buckle beneath him.

“I tried. I tried to do the right thing. I’m sorry that I failed them. I’m sorry that you have to see this.”

A single shot rang out entering underneath his chin and exiting the back of his head. His body went limp and he collapsed back into the seat. The revolver fell from his hand and rolled to floorboard by his feet. Blood gushed out of his wound, covering anything it touched red. The driver fell back then began crawling away, crying for help to whoever would listen.

Rodger sat there still and cold, the vehicle idled as the green light changed to yellow then red. Spectators began to exit their vehicles and passersby turned their heads to the driver’s shouts. There was activity about that intersection that cold morning, an event unplanned to the people who were meant to be witnesses. There, a man driven to the point of death said his last words to the coldness of the day.

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