Blood soaked into the white sheets. Dark blood. Almost black. It was his blood. Leaking from his chest where a couple of bullets were lodged. She stood over him just looking at him. He didn’t know what hit him. Shot him in his sleep. His hazel eyes looked up at her. Or, maybe he was looking up at God.

The two never got along. They’d yell at each other in grocery store parking lots. Raise their voices at O’Sullivan’s bar. Hit one another on the long gravel road that led to their house. Going back and forth while he tried to drive the pickup and keep it straight. She’d slap him and he’d punch her. Both of them had constant bruises.

And then, he would threaten to leave her. Tell her it was over. Done. She’d start balling. Crying over his hollow words. He was never leaving. She knew that. Deep down she knew that. The tears were a facade. Made up to get sympathy. He fell for it every time.

Sometimes she’d threaten to leave him. He’d get angry. Loud. Take swings at her. Hard hits with his fists closed. His hands were made from the jaw bone of an ass. Strong weathered hands from years at the steel plant. It was a wonder she never had a broken bone.

But, why’d she shoot him? Maybe deep down she wanted it all to end. Finished. Tired of all the violence.

She stood over him with rifle in hand. Picked up the phone and dialed 911. She told the dispatcher, He’s dead. You can come pick him up now, she said calmly. He’s laying right here in bed. Second bedroom on the right. I’ll be here waitin’, she said. The address is 1611 Northwest Road. I’ll be in front to let you all in. Should I put on a pot of coffee? See you soon, she hung up, lit a cigarette and tossed the gun on the bed in the blood. Poured herself a drink and waited. Just waited. She had a smile on her face.

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