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It Was Instantaneous

The doctor articulated the words clearly, true textbook style: Exemplar Bedside Manners for Junior Doctors. His eyes held hers, his, doleful, tired, with faint lines streaking through bruise-like shadows, hers, the palest blue.

"He'd've felt nothing' he said, not quite taking her hand. "It was instantaneous." She felt affronted. Why did he say he'd've felt nothing? After that hideous crack on back of the head? "It was instantaneous"? Surely instantaneous means more than a mere nothing - a nanosecond or a picosecond? An attosecond to suddenly think: "Shit! Is this THE END?" Why in this instantaneous present, was she not allowed to challenge the use of such a trite expression?

Then she counselled herself. He was struck from behind. There was no weapon at the scene. No CCTV cameras. His mobile phone was found in his hand. The phone was flooded with text messages from his histrionic lover.

Immediately the hospital called, his faithful wife gathered her things to rush to the hospital, stoking the wood burner and locking the door. She checked her watch. The murder weapon would now be ash.

"We did all we could" The doctor added.

"And so did I" she said.

Story by:

Alex Fender

7 March 2014