My son was killed.

He was run over when coming home from school. He was eight. The doctors told me that he would have made it if he had been brought to the hospital in time. The bastard who did it ran away without providing assistance of course. By the time one of the bystanders called an ambulance it was already too late.

I month went by and the sorrow was chocking the life out of me. I talked to our parish father. I asked him how could God have let this happen. He told me that same old story about the Lord’s great plan for us all and how everything happens for a reason and so on and so forth. I asked him then if I could at least rest assured that whoever did this would burn in hell. He then told me something that… didn’t suit me. He said:

"God is a god of love, Michael. Although the culprit surely deserves punishment, he won’t suffer eternal damnation if he repents. God is a god of forgiveness and it would be better for you to try to forgive as well."

I went home with the priest’s words in my mind. I couldn’t accept that man not getting what he deserved, not being punished. I couldn’t accept him being forgiven by God. So I decided not to give him a chance to be forgiven. I knew the woman who called the ambulance. She works at a café in front of where my son was hit. I asked her if she had written down the car’s plate. She said it all happened too fast and that she only managed to see the car’s color and model. A gray 2005 Volkswagen Passat GLS. I asked her if she was sure. She said that she had worked in a car dealership before and now had a keen eye for cars. That was all that I needed to hear. She said she was very sorry for my loss. I thanked her and went home.

I started searching for the car in several websites since I figured that my son’s murderer would surely be trying to get rid of it now. For six hours straight I browsed through hundreds of cars. I was about to call it a night when I spotted it. “2005 Volkswagen Passat GLS, very few miles on it but can lower the price because of small dent on the hood”. “Small dent on the hood”. That sentence made me so infuriated that it brought tears to my eyes. To think that in someone else’s mind my son’s death was nothing more than that, filled me with wrath. Trying not to break the keyboard apart, I sent a message in reply to the ad asking to see the car in person.

I couldn’t sleep that night. All I could think about was that fucking bastard who killed my son and all the pain that I was going to put him through. By the time I came home from work the next day I had a reply. The guy told me that he could only make it at night and asked if I wouldn’t mind it. “Even better”, I thought to myself. I agreed and asked him if he couldn’t meet with me that same evening. He said no but that he could the next day.

I spent the following twenty-four hours in unbearable anticipation. Although it seemed like forever, our meeting finally came. Trying my best to keep my cool, I shook his hand. I shook the hand of the man who killed my boy. At that moment all I wanted to do was crush his head on the pavement, but that would have been too merciful. I had other plans for him…

He started to make small talk and whatnot, talking about the car and so on. I pretended to be interested of course. I then asked him to pop the trunk so that I could take a look at the engine. He did so and while he was leaning over it explaining to me things that I didn’t pay the least attention to, I wrapped my arm around his neck from behind and started to choke him. He flailed his arms wildly and kicked the car while trying to get free, but my anger fuelled my strength and my arms must have seemed like bars of iron crushing his trachea. As soon as I felt him go limp I stopped. I dragged him to my basement and taped him to a chair, securing his arms, legs and torso. I also tapped his mouth shut so no one could hear him scream.

I sat in front of him and waited for him to wake up. I could have woke him up, but I felt strangely calm, relaxed. I knew that I had him right where I wanted and there was no way that he could escape. He was already dead and all that was left was for him to know it. After a few minutes he did wake up. He tried to wiggle free while his muffled voice attempted to say something from underneath the tape. At that moment I couldn’t hold it anymore. I started laughing hysterically. That image of him completely helpless and powerless was too enjoyable for me. As he saw me laughing he stopped moving and just stared at me wide eyed.

"I know this must all seem very strange to you. You’re probably thinking I’m some kind of psycho that lured you here for no reason whatsoever. But that’s not quite the case my friend. You’re here because I’ll have justice, one way or another, and since neither men nor God will grant it to me, I’ll just have to take it myself."

He frowned his eyebrows, as if confused. I was happy to explain it to him of course. After all, it wouldn’t be fair to punish him without him knowing what he was being punished for.

"Remember that small dent on the hood of your car?"

He didn’t react.

"Do you remember? The small boy you ran over a month ago? The child you left to die on the asphalt? MY CHILD?"

I stared deep into his eyes and onto his soul.

"Do you remember now?" I whispered.

He raised his eyebrows when he finally knew what I was talking about. He then started to frantically try to release himself from his bonds while yelling as much as he could. I felt my face being contorted into an expression of utter hatred which I’m sure would have scared even myself if I could see it in a mirror.

I stood up and walked over to the table where I had left the tools with which I’d work on the man. Simple tools really. Nothing too fancy. No chainsaws or anything like that. That would be too fast and flamboyant. I wanted to enjoy every minute of this.

"Let’s start then, shall we?" I asked casually as if inviting him to a game of checkers.

I took a file and walked towards him. His expression was confused. Perhaps he was expecting an axe or a knife; after all, who has ever threatened someone’s life with a file? When I started using it however, I’m sure he understood the horrors I had in store for him.

I put on a pair of gardener’s gloves and pressed the file down on his right arm. I then started to move it back and forth. The skin slowly came off and after a few seconds I could see the red flesh underneath. I pulled the chair in which I had sat previously closer to him so that I could continue more comfortably. After a few minutes there was a slit with blood oozing from it. So that he wouldn’t bleed out, I strongly taped his arm above the wound. All the while he was screaming at the top of his lungs and struggling to get free. I eventually reached the bone and that’s when he passed out from shock.

I decided to take this break to change my tool. I picked five needles and walked back towards him. He was still passed out. I slapped him hard on the face but to no avail. I proceed to what I was about to do anyway, hoping that he would wake up in the process. I took the first needle and started to insert it below his thumb fingernail. He shook his hand so violently that the needle came off and fell to the floor. Frustrated but glad that he was awake again, I picked the needle up. I then put my knee on top of his wrist and pressed the full weight of my leg onto it. I stuck the needle beneath his nail all the way this time. As I continued, his shrieks became girlish, which I found very amusing. When I had finished all the fingers from his left hand I looked back at his face. He was crying and covered in sweat.

I went back to the table and picked up a spoon. This time he had no doubt in his mind. He knew that whatever I was going to do with it, would be horrible, no matter how much innocent a spoon may seem. As I walked towards him, I could feel his fear in the air. It was as if I was carrying a gun. As a matter of fact, a gun would have probably been preferred by him, since it could mean that his suffering was at an end. But I wasn’t done. Not yet.

I taped his head to the chair. I then carefully placed the spoon below his eyeball and plucked it out, being very careful to not sever the nerves so that he could still see. I then held up his own eye towards him so that he could see me do the same to the other one. When I was done, I left his eyes dangling from their sockets in front of his cheeks.

My last step before killing him was to take out his tongue. I didn’t want him to repent even in purgatory. I took the tape from his mouth and let him catch his breath for a while. I sat down a bit since I myself was very tired. I was feeling calm though. My work was almost done. The death of my son would soon be avenged. I took the pliers with which I would pull his tongue out and crouched in front of him.

"I don’t hope you understand what I did here today. I just want you to know that this wasn’t as much vengeance as it was justice. You made me suffer so I made you suffer. You killed my son, my only son, so now I’m going to kill you."

I pointed his eyes at me so that he could see me.

"Do you have anything you want to say before you die?"

His breath was slow and heavy.

"I’m… I’m a salesman…"

"What does it matter?" I asked him, confused.

"The car… isn’t mine..."