Journal Entry: THE TRACKS
I killed my brother with a penny. Simple, benign, and perfectly believable.
It happened at the tracks. Because, as life would teach me in the years to come, a speeding train was many things. Majestic, when it blurred past too quickly for the eyes to register anything but streaks of colour. Powerful, when it rumbled underfoot like an impending earthquake. Deafening, when it roared along the rails like a thunderstorm dropped from the heavens. A speeding train was all these things, and more. A speeding train was deadly.
The gravel leading up to the tracks was loosely packed, and our feet slipped as we climbed. It was evening, close to six o’clock, the usual time the train rolled through town. The bottoms of the clouds blushed with a dying crimson as the sun settled under the horizon. Dusk was the best time to visit the tracks. In broad daylight, the conductor might spot us and call the police to report two kids playing dangerously close to the tracks. Of course, I made sure that scenario had already happened. It was essential to my plan. Had I killed my brother the very first time I brought him here, my anonymity in this tragedy would have been paper-thin. I needed ammunition for when the police came to question me. I needed to create an irrefutable history about our time at the tracks. We’d been here before. We’d been seen. We’d been caught. Our parents had been informed, and we had been punished. A pattern had been developed. But this time, I would tell them, things had gone wrong. We were kids. We were stupid. The narrative was flawless, and I would later learn that it needed to be. The detective who would look into my brother’s death was an onerous force. Immediately suspicious of my story, he was never truly satisfied with my explanation of events. To this day, I am certain he is not. But my version of that day, and the history I had created, was watertight. Despite his efforts, the detective found no holes…