The temple, p.1
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.
Two years earlier
A Clean Slate
The Discalceation Ceremony
The Laws of the Lord
Will no one rid me…?
The Dryvellist Hospital
We Shall Overcome
The Freedom Defence League
City of Darkness
The Truth Hurts
It is a pleasant sunny morning in early autumn. Waiting at a bus stop in a town, it could be a town just like the one you or I live in, are several people. Standing at the front of the queue is a pensioner. After forty-five years of toil and work at the post office he is finally looking forward to enjoying some quiet time all on his own. Not today, though. Today he is on his way to see his granddaughter. She is just four years old and fills his heart with a joy he hasn’t known for many long years.
Behind him in the line is a young mother carrying her ten month old baby. Her baby fills her life with a love that burns brighter than a thousand suns. Feeling his little hands around her neck, his little cheek against hers as he looks this way and that, gives her comfort and joy and a deep sense of fulfilment. The long nights of broken sleep feeding him, cleaning him, soothing him, all were gladly done for him.
Next comes a one legged man with a crutch. A veteran from a war. He has served his country and lost a leg on a mine. He feels no bitterness. He joined the army of his own free will, knowing the risks he might be taking. He is proud of having served his country, of having done his part to fight for freedom so people back home could live in peace. After his honourable discharge he was given a small pension, not much but just enough to see him through. That and his job in a small bookshop where he can spend most of the time sitting behind the counter allow him to lead a pleasant life. He is on his way to work. He has lost a leg, but he is proud that he works for his living, does his part in society and isn’t a burden to anyone.
There are quite a number of people queuing at the bus stop this morning. Housewives going on errands, kids on their way to school, workers, clerks and other good folk that make up your average town.
At last the bus approaches. The people at the bus stop look at their watches, some wondering if they’ll be late for work, others hoping to get a seat. Not a chance today, the bus is quite full already.
Sitting on the bus by a window is Sycko. He is also going to work, but work of a very different sort. Unlike all the honest hardworking people around him he knows he is on a mission for God. There is no doubt in his mind that he is doing the right thing. Sycko knows that he is on the side of God. He knows that he is right and that all the others are wrong. They live in sin, in the sin of refusing to heed the word of the only one. They aren’t humans, they are mere animals, no, even worse, they are an abomination in the eyes of the Lord, and he, Sycko, is there to set things right. He is proud that God, the all-mighty, has chosen him to do His work.
The bus pulls up at the bus stop and the doors open. The moment has come. Sycko’s hand is in his pocket. It tightens around the switch he is holding. He knows he is doing it for God and he smiles. The little baby outside sees his smile and happily smiles back, a smile of innocence. Then Sycko presses the button. The explosives wrapped around his body detonate. People on the bus are torn to pieces, blood and bones and flesh fly through the air. The pensioner at the front of the queue is killed instantly. He has worked hard all his life. Now the happy years of his retirement are ended by a holy man. The ten month old baby boy behind him is still smiling at Sycko when a piece of flying metal cuts his head off. His father is a widower now, though he doesn’t know it yet. He will never take his son to the playground now, or see his son’s first day at school or his graduation ceremony, or all the other things he has dreamed of and worked for. All brought to ruin by a man of God.
Violence has caught up with the veteran. He survived a war but now he is dead, killed in the town he fought to protect. Housewives, children, workers, clerks and the other good people going about their daily lives, now lie about torn to pieces, their mangled bodies all that is left of lives filled with work, love, joy and all the other things we take for granted.
The Temple by Brian Smith / Thrillers & Crime have rating 2.8 out of 5 / Based on31 votes