Mr Right

I stepped silently along, the night was dead. I knew what was going to happen. There was a little twang of guilt as I continued down the bleak concrete pathways, buildings looming on the left, their shadows making the darkness even more menacing; Trees swaying with the wind on the right, the moon's light creating flickering shadows.

I made my way through the gloom of the early morning, adrenaline and guilt building as my pace increased. It had to be done, and I was the only person who could do it. Too many people have suffered before. I had to put a stop to it. Win this once and for all.

My backpack pulled heavily on my shoulders, like a demon trying to pull me down to hell. I continued on, the moon sliding behind the clouds as if it were scared of the dark. A shady figure sat on a public bench ahead of me. I approached him cautiously, wondering if he felt as bad as I did.

Matt's face became illuminated as the moon slid back from behind the clouds. He was smiling. 'That old coot's gonna get it, Pyro.' He said almost too gleefully. Matt's high spirits didn't help to make me feel any better. 'Let's just get this over with.' I responded.

Mr Right was our English teacher, he was an old goat that everybody hated. He was a sadist, and seemed to love teaching innocent kids a lesson over the tinniest thing. My personal experience with him was when I attempted to throw a scrunched up piece of paper into the bin from my desk. I missed, and went to pick it up and put it in properly, but that wasn't good enough for Mr Right. Five hundred lines of 'I will not throw my rubbish into the bin because I must learn to act like a respectable young adult.' Five. Hundred. Lines.

Matt got it worse, he was hanging around at recess when Mr Right happened to stroll by. Mr Right noticed a piece of rubbish someone had carelessly discarded onto the floor, and asked Matt to pick it up. 'What?' Matt asked, taking one earphone out so he could hear properly. Mr Right exploded. 'You will not speak to me in that manner! You could hear perfectly well!' I didn't see Matt outside at recess for a week after that.

We walked through the gloom, and eventually approached Mr Right's house. If you could even call it a house. I didn't believe in ghosts, but if they lived anywhere, it would be there. The grass was overgrown, and there was an old dead gum tree in the middle of the yard, its pointy branches spanning out as if they were trying to reach out into the darkest part of the abyss that was the night's sky. The house looked ancient, one broken window inadequately covered up by a crude wooden desk on the inside, where Mr Right has been known to sit, staring out his front window. There were rumours going around that there were two gravestones in his backyard, but I was sceptical.

Matt checked his phone for the time. 'It's 4am, so he shouldn't be up yet. You got everything?' 'Yeah.' I responded, taking my heavy bag off my shoulders and unzipping it. Everything I needed to make a small bomb was in here. If there was one thing I was good at, it was making explosives. That's why everyone called me Pyro. I felt even guiltier as I took all the things out and got prepared. The type of bomb I was making had a long, slow burning fuse, that would take at least half an hour to get down to the bottom and explode. That way we had plenty of time to escape before Mr Right noticed his mailbox was in a million pieces.

'You got the note?' I asked Matt, who nodded. As well as blowing up his mailbox, the plan was to slip a note under Mr Right's door, anonymously telling him how much we and the whole school hates him, and that more things like this will happen if he doesn't get his act together. 'I'll slip it under his door once the bombs ready.' Matt whispered, as if Mr Right could hear them through the cold walls of his house.

I spent five minutes preparing, checking, and double checking the bomb, and finally gave Matt the thumbs up as I lit the end of its long fuse. I quickly stuffed the whole thing into the mailbox, trying in vain to swallow the terrible guilt I was feeling. I closed the mailbox and turned to watch Matt sheepishly sneak towards Mr Right's front door, clenching the letter in his shaking hand. Matt was reaching down to slide the letter under the door when his whole body froze for an instant, and he suddenly darted around the side of the house.

I hurried after him, and was about to enquire when I heard the front door creak open. I held my breath. It was Mr Right! What if he checked his mail box now? What if he came around here? We'd be expelled from the school for sure. 'Is that you, boys?' came Mr Right's voice in an oddly calm tone. 'Are you hiding? Well I'll just have to come and find you then.'

I could hear Mr Right's footsteps approaching the side of the house, causing Matt and I to instantly start running in the only direction we could - into Mr Right's backyard. We hurried around just in time to avoid being seen, to find Mr Right's backyard in worse disarray then the front. We ran to the closest possible hiding place we could find, which was behind an old shed. I dared to look around and examine Mr Right's backyard further, and I instantly noticed the two gravestones just barely poking their cracked heads out of the tall grass. Looking closer, I could just read the inscriptions on the graves. George Right and Adam Right.

'There you are!' Mr Right said almost happily causing me to jolt back behind the shed as quickly as I could. 'You two thought you could get away from me, but I found you!' Mr Right cooed from the other side of the shed. There was nowhere to go. Matt was shaking. I realised I was shaking too. 'Ah yes.' Mr Right continued. 'You two were always naughty boys, but I let you off gently.' I could hear Mr Right approaching through the tall grass. Gently? I wondered.

'I should have seen this coming'. Said Mr Right. 'You two going off and rebelling against me like that.' I heard Mr Right stop walking. 'You were always my boys you know. I loved you so much.' I heard him sob. 'But I let you get away with too much, I should have never let you go to that party down by the river.' Mr Right was crying. 'If I had just been stricter on you two this would never have happened. It's my fault you both drowned that night. I'm sorry. So sorry…'

I heard Mr Right stumble through the darkness, the noise of his back door slamming shut behind him cutting through the night like a knife. Adam and I just sat there for a while, without saying anything. Eventually we both stood up, and made our way back around to the front of the house. I took the bomb out of the mailbox, and put out the fuse, while Matt scrunched up the letter. We walked home without saying a word.