The Path That Loops | Teen Ink

The Path That Loops

January 31, 2015
By Extraterrestrial SILVER, Singapore, Other
Extraterrestrial SILVER, Singapore, Other
9 articles 4 photos 66 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Do what I do. Hold tight and pretend it's a plan!"

When I’d made a deal with the Devil fifteen months ago, there had been no thunder and lightning, no eerie instances of green smoke, no lengthening of the shadows, no disembodied voice.


No, there had only been a tiny lump inside my mother’s right breast. A tiny, insignificant lump – the best (or only) indicators of breast cancer – that we had ignored at first, because it was cancer, and cancer was only something that happened in movies, not to real people. It couldn’t happen to us. How could it?


But it was cancer anyway, and the chemo didn’t work.


The doctors gave my mother four months.


Fifteen months ago I’d made a deal with the Devil, and it had all started from a simple plea.


Please don’t let her die, I’ll do anything. Please don’t let her die.


When she passed the four-month prediction and made it to five, the doctors praised her fighting spirit. When she made it to seven, they were amazed. Nine months, and they were shell-shocked. It was a medical miracle.


When she made it to a year, prestigious doctors and scientists were called over, and they were all similarly baffled. No one knew what to do with her. There had been no talk of studying her in an effort to help other cancer patients live, because by rights, my mother should have been dead.


Not in the way an antagonist gasps, “You should be dead!” to a protagonist, because in those cases the hero always has a way out of deadly situations. No, my mother should have been dead because she should be dead.


Now, it was no longer “She’s still alive – what a miracle!” It was “She’s still alive – but how?”


But it was not much of a life anymore. Her heart continued to beat feebly and her lungs functioned with the aid of machines, but she slowly wasted away. She threw up everything she ate, became grossly underweight. Her body was all sharp angles, jutting up from beneath the thin hospital blanket. And she was in constant pain all the time. Once, when she’d had more energy than usual, she’d mouthed I want to die to me.


This is not what I wanted; you have to believe me.


Your dear mother can be not-dead forever. Would you like that?


The Devil is clever.


Let the cancer take her. I changed my mind. Let her die. Better than – this.


Oh, but all I did was prevent her dying from cancer. You are free to end her any time you wish.


Fifteen months ago I’d wanted her to live. Now I want her to die.


My hand closed around the wires, plugging out the life support machine. I watched her chest rise and fall with stuttering breaths, each exhale fainter than the last, until at last all movement stopped.


That was how I killed my mother.


It’s funny how all this began with a mistake. With a misguided plea.


You have to believe me.


This is not what I wanted.

The author's comments:

A little something conjured up for a class asssignment. Story based on event / mistake, 450-500 words. 

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