JUST DO IT
By: William Polf
"Wait,” she said.
“Why?” the man next to her asked.
He paused, his arms at his side. “When, then?”
His wrist itched and he reached to scratch it.
She stopped his hand. “Be still,” she said.
He took a breath to calm down, then let it seep out. God, he thought, let’s get on with it.
She just stared.
“When?” he asked, this time with force.
She waved her arm. “I’ll tell you,” she said. Her voice had an edge.
She’s scared, he thought. She won’t go through with it.
They stood there, and looked down at the old man on the bed. Did he know they were there?
She could not hear the old man breathe. Or see his chest move. She leaned down to look.
“He might be dead,” she said, her voice low.
The man next to her strained to hear her words. “What did you say?”
Then, the old man’s thumb moved. They both saw it.
Just a nerve twitch, she thought. Or – he’s not dead. She could not bear to touch him to find out.
There was no sound in the room. It spooked her, and she shook.A chill, she thought. That’s all.
They gazed at the old man, so still there on the white sheets. The twitch had gone.
He could be dead, she thought. He should be.
“Now,” she said.
The man next to her moved to do it.