Prompt for July 5, 2016

Complete the short story/flash fiction, that has the following opening:

I will not cry.

The body swinging from the gallows is jerking back and forth, struggling to get a breath of air as the noose slowly tightens around their throat. I try to look down but a pair of hands forces my head up to look at the face of the man dying in front of me. The man’s face is turning purple as he struggles to breathe, his body contorting, trying to find some angle, some way of getting just one more breath.

I will not cry.

I look into the face and watch the life in the blue eyes start to fade. The motions are less hectic, less strenuous as if they’ve given up and see that it’s true. The dimming light and the slack expression all signify acceptance of the inevitable. As the struggles fade those eyes look at me and I try to read something in them, something of the person that was once there.

I will not cry.

I try to find the person I knew before the arrests, before the King’s curfew became the law of the land. I try to find the person that I know is still in there, a spark of life still in the eyes as they look at me. I see sorrow and regret. I see a longing for what could have been, what might have been. I see love.

I will not cry.

The light in my father’s eyes dims, his struggles stop and the body slowly stops swinging. The hands let go of my face but I still stare into the eyes of my father remembering all of the things that he had done for me. A single father raising a rebellious daughter in a time of strife. I hurt him, but he always loved me and welcomed me back with open arms.

I will not cry.

I know that I killed him. My actions, my deeds, they led the Prince to our town and to me. How best to punish someone? Take away the one thing that they love, the one thing that grounds them to who there truly are. He did that. He killed my father to teach me a lesson. He killed my father to show me that he is above the law.

I will not cry, but I will get revenge.

Post a link to the story in the comments.


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