The Last Thoughts of a Star-Crossed Lover

The Last Thoughts of a Star-Crossed Lover

A Story by Daniel Atkinson

A man's final thoughts before he and his wife are murdered. Set in the Wild West.


I'm breathing in the dust and the dirt of the midnight desert. On my knees, I exhale a shaky breath and watch the mist drift off into the night. It's as cold out here as the gun barrel pressed to the back of my head.

I turn my head to the right just enough so I can see my wife, and the gun pointed at her. Her eyes are shut. Silent tears breathe out from underneath her eyelids.

The gun barrel is driven deeper into my scalp. I turn away. Behind me, I hear my captor spit tobacco juice on the parched ground.

They took us. From our home. They broke the door down, bound us, and rode us out here on horseback.

I did their gang wrong at some point. I don't remember. Now they've brought us out here in the desert to shoot us and leave our bodies for the crows.

A click. The hammer's been drawn back. I hear its twin pointed at my wife do the same. All is quiet. The stars shine. The moon waits.

"You fucked with the wrong guys, gringo," the man behind me says in a dusty Mexican accent.

I know.

I turn to look at my wife for the last time. She turns to me, her eyes speaking a blank hopelessness that breaks my heart. She's stopped crying, but this hollow resignation is somehow worse.

With my eyes, I try to tell her that I love her. Every moment, every smile, every kiss, I try to tell her they were the best I could have had. Because they were ours.

Our moments.

Our forever.

Gone as the man behind me pulls the trigger.

© 2011 Daniel Atkinson

Author's Note

Daniel Atkinson
I was watching some Western on TV a couple months ago and at the beginning a husband and wife are murdered by a Mexican gang. I thought, "What is going through that guy's head?" I can guess it's something like this.

My Review

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I enjoy snippets like this. A powerful scene often evokes powerful feelings. I personally would like to see more memory of the man and wife being executed. More demonstration of their love to intensify the tragedy of it all.

Posted 10 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

This piece didn't grab me like your soldier story. The connection between husband and wife is a little cold. It feels impersonal, but that's what this killing is.

Posted 10 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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3 Reviews
Added on April 2, 2011
Last Updated on April 4, 2011
Tags: murder, husband, wife, guns, violent, thoughts, depressing, sad, emotional


Daniel Atkinson
Daniel Atkinson

Atlanta, GA

"it's so easy to be a poet and so hard to be a man." -Bukowski more..