The Promise

He pushed her slowly; so slowly that it was as if he was not moving her wheelchair at all, so imperceptible were his movements. Three hours later they reached the middle of the field, having flattened an entire row of ranunculus along the way, their vibrant colors nevertheless brightening a dark day.

He wanted to turn back, to pretend that he did not remember their agreement, to avoid keeping a promise that he was afraid he would regret fulfilling, but he did remember, and he knew that he had sworn to her that regardless of how difficult the job was he would not fail in its execution.

Finally he lovingly placed a blindfold over her vacant eyes, checked that the gun was loaded, and kissed her gently, tears streaming down his face despite his resolve and commitment.

Although it would be a blessed relief for her and the end of a waking nightmare, it was to be the beginning of a new horror for her son.

Lillie McFerrin

12 thoughts on “The Promise

  1. Not the story to read after watching Les Miserables and listening to Anne Hathaway sing I Dreamed a Dream. I’m for making 13 a lucky year!

  2. How did I miss this? Very beautifully written, powerful and tragic. What kind of mother would make her son promise such a thing? Yes, I imagine his horror has just begun…

    1. Thank you Jayne. Perhaps the mother and son already witnessed the father’s demise? Perhaps they both agreed that the atrocities of dementia and living in a home with heads hanging and tongues lolling was no life for her?

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