So Much Mightier
To whom it may concern,
For years I have written, and for you fortunately, it has been under the radar. Those of you who have been affected by my writing could not possibly be reading this right now. For this, I can do no more than say “I am sorry.” What good would anything other than that do for either of us?
I have known since the first time I struck pencil to paper that I have this indelible power. I was a boy of six, and was quite upset at my brother for something. The irony is now that the significance of the wrongdoing and the reason for my hatred of him that day elude me. Nevertheless, I ran upstairs to my purple room, yanked open my desk drawer, drew out a handful of scrap paper and a pencil and began writing.
The words came to me as snow comes to winter, and when I look back, it seems the ideas were mature for my age. And just as irrational. I began scrawling out what I wanted to have happen to him and sufficiently cursed him out of my life. Moreover, I wrote that I wished him to be dead.
By morning my callous wish had been granted. I ran downstairs, alerted by the shrill shrieking of my mother. At the bottom landing lay Bradley, his head now screwed onto his shoulders at an inconceivable angle. Blood was seeping from his nose, and even at just a half-dozen yeas old, I knew what I was looking at.
I stared at Brad for no less than five minutes, listening in the background to my mother calling for my father to get an ambulance, a doctor, save my brother. She was foolish in her demand; anyone could see that.
I ran back up to my room and reached under my pillow for those dreaded pages. How unfortunate for me if my inconsolable mother should find them. I tore those sheets into confetti. Then smaller still, until you could not make out that there had been even word one on a single bit. Out the window I let them fly, the wind taking the paper snowflakes to parts unknown.
You would think me mad that at six years old to even assume that I had anything to do with my own brother’s death — by manner of writing, no less. Coincidence, you say. For you, I would imagine so. Nevertheless, I can assure you this incident was not isolated.
I stopped writing for months after that. They considered me a lost cause when later I would refuse to complete as benign a task as my arithmetic tables. I could not bring myself to scratch the paper with graphite, not even so much as to fill in the little bubbles on a standardized test. They blamed it on my reacting to my brother’s death. That was an underestimation.
However, with the threat to keep me back a grade, I realized I would have to make the attempt. When we were tasked with writing a final entry in our first grade journals, I hoped something innocuous and innocent could not hurt. I wrote about our puppy, wished him well and mentioned how happy he made me since my brother’s passing on.
When I got home, I was shocked to find that he was quite alive still, and had just chewed apart my church loafers. I was delighted. My writing hadn’t killed him and I hated those tight shoes.
As I grew, I found I liked writing more, and was ecstatic to find that I could include real creatures as characters, and not bring about their demise. That was, until I wrote that story. Once I wrote that one, I realized I would only bring about death if in the story the subject died.
I wrote a tale about a skateboarder kid at our school; not my idea of sporting, but he made for a good story. I wrote one or two chapters about the kid, with no noticeable result. However, the third story I told about him had him suffering a horrific wipe-out in front of a crowd of people. He made it to the hospital, but ended up never leaving alive. Hours later I heard the skateboarder kid got hit by a car. Though it wasn’t from a wipe-out during a competition, he died two days later in the hospital. It was then that I was sure there was no coincidence.
Of course, I did the only logical thing I could do: I began experimenting with my stories. I wrote happy tales, and found that the people I knew would live to see another day. Yet, when I would write about someone meeting their maker, within hours I would discover that they had met with their final destiny. Every time.
It was not a coincidence any more than your blinking and breathing. I was killing people with my words. Sometimes violently, sometimes in their sleep. Nevertheless, if I wrote that they would not wake from a Twinkie-induced sugar coma, they were within hours of death. The power was intoxicating; so much so that at last count, I had terminated one hundred twenty-seven acquaintances and strangers, never once leaving a fingerprint.
It has gotten to be more than I can bear now, though. The burden is unshakable. You would think I could just stop writing. However, as they say, violence begets violence. I cannot stop. The power is consuming. Intoxicating. Worst of all, fun.
So, I am doing the only thing I can, and by the time you read this, it will all make sense. Though there may be no explanation as to “why”, there will be a semblance of closure. A couple hours from now you will find me, bloodless and inexplicably dispatched. Moreover, one hundred twenty-seven mysteries will be solved.
You see, once upon a time I wrote a story about me: that story was this letter. It was a story I finished with one logical ending, the only ending I could possibly write.