The siren was for me (Fiction)


Mercy Hospital
Chicago, IL

The Catholic priest read the Chicago Tribune Newspaper with deep sadness as the headline read:


Father O’Reilly laid the newspaper down softly on the stand next to his bed.
He closed his eyes and wondered why there was so much hate and violence in his beloved Chicago.
The breakfast brought to him just five minutes ago sat colder and untouched.
He flicked on the TV and there too he found more news on the outstanding murder rate in Chicago
he switched off the TV and closed his eyes.

A nurse entered his hospital room.

“Father O’Reilly.” she said.

“A police detective is here to speak with you regarding the death of the man at your church.
Do you feel well enough to speak with him this morning?”

Father O’Reilly:
“Yes, I will speak with the detective, tell him to come right in.”

“Father, you didn’t like your breakfast?
Is there anything else you would like me to get you instead?”

Father O’Reilly:
“No thank you.
Please tell the detective I will speak with him now.”

The nurse exists and speaks with detective Lt. Jackson out side the room.

“Now, Lt. Jackson, you can talk with Father O’Reilly, but only for a few minutes, he ‘s still weak from the trauma… please follow me.”

Lt. Jamal Jackson enters the hospital room of Father O’Reilly.

Lt. Jackson:
“Good morning, Father O’Reilly, my name is detective Jackson and I just want to get a few details regarding the shooting at your church two weeks ago.
Sir, could you please tell me exactly what happened starting from the time you walked into the confession both.”

Father O’Reilly:
“It was just so evil…
all morning I had this uneasy feeling and I felt sick to my stomach, there was a foreboding the like I have never experienced in all my life as a priest.

I sat quietly in the confession booth waiting for that broken heart and torn soul to come to me and confess their sins, pains and sorrows.

The dark soul which entered sounded like a machine, this man, had the voice of Satan, the spirit of evil shot a cold chill up my spine. I wanted to vomit, I put my hand over my mouth as the man cursed God.

I wanted to run out of the confession both but I was transfixed, my hand held tightly to the cross around my neck for I knew in that moment I was being attacked by Satan. It grew stifling hot and sweat poured from my body and I felt myself dehydrating, my throat was parched and I could not breathe.
I fell to one knee.

I found my voice again, and I asked this man why he had come today.
He cursed God again.

I asked him once more why had he come to God’s house.
He laughed.

I held even more strongly to the cross about my neck.
I asked him again why had he come into God’s house.
I could hear him punching the palm of his hand, and then he told me he had just killed
his wife of three months and her two children.

He shouted at the top of his lungs.
My God!
I felt like I was in a dream of delirium, my mind tried to repudiate what was happening, but it was indeed happening.

The man shouted.
“LUCIFER! LUCIFER eternal master do I submit this hour of darkness!”

I heard the clank of a gun chamber being drawn back and then the crack of an explosion, I shuttered with fear and my ears rang from the gun’s loud blast and I lost my hearing, my head began to spin wildly, I began to cough and I was choking from the enormous smell of amonia in the air, I began to cry.

I coughed hard and I shouted as loud as I could:

The doors of the confession booth would not open, I lost my balance and felt myself slowly slip to the blood slippery floor.

I heard a siren off in the distance, my head now rested on the cold wet floor; my face was washed in the blood of this man who had just shot and killed himself. I felt myself going into shock and then, my whole body did shake and tremble something fiercely, the booth grew smaller and darker like a lens closing in on a circle.
I passed out.

Several days later I awoke here at Mercy Medical in intensive care, the doctor told me I had a heart attack and for the first time, just talking with you re-telling of that horrible experience,
I now finally realized,

The siren was for me.”

Charles Micheaux
Atlanta, Georgia


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