Dan Galvin stood at the guard rail of the steel-constructed bridge, staring with bleary eyes at the lake fifty feet below him. It had rained yesterday, and the water level was high, rocking and swaying back and forth with unusual livelihood. It was hypnotic, soothing, but Dan did not notice this; for Dan, the water served as an agitation, further fuel for the agony he felt inside.

His hands trembled as he clutched the guard rail tightly, and he noticed dimly that his knuckles were whitening from his forceful grip. Slowly his shaking spread throughout his body until he could barely stand; only his hold of the guard rail helped to support him.

Images of what had just happened- what he had just done- flashed through his mind until his heart pounded, his stomach settled like a molted ball of iron inside him. He had to fight back the pained cry that arose in his throat, fight to remain standing, keep himself from sinking to his knees.

He had killed his children… he had killed his own kids…

Their faces flickered through his mind, the last time he had seen them, always to be engraved into his being… Trey… Daisy… Kolby… dead. All dead… because of him. Dan saw their still forms, the blood streaked across small faces… but worst of all, their eyes, open, unblinking… forever.

He felt the bile rise up in his mouth, and he forced it down, trembling violently, face contorted into a terrible semblance of regret, anguish. He hurt, all over he hurt… but he deserved it. He deserved everything anyone could inflict on him. He deserved to hurt, to be punished… he deserved to die.

As the idea came to his mind slowly, he grasped at it with eager fingers, accepting it hungrily. He deserved to die for what he had done… why should he live while his children lay cold and lifeless, never again to take another breath? Why should he outlive his children, who had never done anything wrong in their short, innocent lives, while he had screwed up every chance he'd had, every person who'd ever trusted him, everything about the person he could have been?

He deserved to die.

As Dan gazed out at the water underneath him, he felt his body begin to gradually go still; his shaking under control, the anguish in his mind lessened, all other thoughts were gone. There was only him and the water underneath him, and the voice inside him…

You must die for what you did…