Fighting His Fate by Amy Gamet

Fighting his Fate

1

I can’t do this.

The pounding rain reverberated throughout the speeding van, the humid air rich with the pungent scents of intense anxiety and body odor. He was sitting in it like a toddler sitting in his own filth, water cascading down the windshield too quickly for the wipers to remove, the taillights in front of him a vivid red harbinger in the blurred gray scene.

Beside him on the wide bench seat were papers, columns of numbers totaling tens of millions of dollars, assets, expected growth that would never happen unless he did something. A gun rested atop the stack, its black metal hidden in the darkness of the van, its presence as powerful as a loudly ticking bomb.

He had no choice.

She’d taken all other options away.

Lightning flashed, thunder quickly following. A tear streaked down his cheek and he swiped at it angrily with the back of his hand. He’d shoot her first so she didn’t have to watch the rest. Shoot her husband last so he had to see it all.

The car in front of him took the exit ramp for a rest area and he followed, hanging back so he wouldn’t be seen. The parking lot was deserted, a bright yellow sign illuminating the night, the hour and the weather keeping other travelers away. He parked some distance from his target, noting the rain had slowed.

They were alone.

He’d been waiting for opportunity to reveal itself, and he picked up his weapon with trembling hands. He knew what he had to do, but his shoulders shook hard with emotion, making accurate aim impossible. He would miss and they would run, alerted to the danger he presented. He threw the gun on the floor of the van with a growl of frustration.

A silhouette emerged from the vehicle, then another, the figures bending back to reach into the car. They were getting their twins, the goddamn twins who never should have been born.

He had to fix this, but how? His breath was coming hard. A scene emerged in his mind, his van careening toward the figures across the rain-splattered parking lot, knocking them out of existence as easily as bowling a strike. He lifted his foot off the brake and froze. It hovered over the gas pedal as a fresh round of sweat burst from his pores.

He was sobbing now, his body wracked by desperation, indecision, and grief. But those children weren’t supposed to be here. They were a tangent that had veered drastically off course, an alternate reality that should have been stopped before they took their first breath.

The couple latched hands, each holding an infant car seat as they headed for the building. He focused on those car seats as his foot came down hard on the gas, the front of the chassis lurching upward with the force of the acceleration.

Don’t think.

Don’t think.

For fuck’s sake, don’t think.