Some onlooker might make the allegation that I am not sound of mind—that I am a beast—these assertions being deduced from my stature and the slightly uneasy quality that my countenance has involuntarily assumed. You see, one is mistaken in this respect, for I am completely sane—completely and utterly at peace. My state of mind is typical, conventional, standard—my intentions of late perhaps arguable, but sensible and coherent nonetheless—I assure you that my self-proclaimed mental state is fact, not falsity, however the decency—the civility—of my person after committing this deed would likely be condemned if debated by the public, but I need not the jury's approval, for I am moral in my own mind, and now that my bane has been done away with…

I take a swig from my glass to lubricate my scorched throat. How is it—why is it that I grow so restless, so…cowardly? I feel the sight on me, their spectacles honing in on the glassy marbles that sit behind my own—wide, darting, dancing around the room, evading gaze, eluding contact. My demeanor grows increasingly anxious—easily interpreted by the attendees sauntering about me in an assembly. I shuffle urgently throughout the horde, in an effort to flee the scene, all the while my pupils contracting, and nervous beads of briny sweat straining to secrete from my skin, and my hands, my eyes, my jaw— all trembling and quaking with an itching unrest.

It is now that the orchestra commences their playing—it is now that I hesitate—the melodic harmonies pacify my battered mind, tremors of pleasure crawl up my spine, and my countenance relaxes. In this moment of tranquility, the volume escalates hastily, and I clasp my hands together, I rub my fingers together and abrade them—this chafing becomes scratching, and the scratching becomes scoring, until the once mild, sustained strokes become harsh, and painful—cacophony echoes about the arched ceilings, the shrillness floods my ears from all sides and assaults my sanity.

"Oh, Heavenly Father, hear my prayer, my cries, my pleas. No human deserves this—this punishment! This malice! This torture!"

Here and now, my lungs become void of life-sustaining breath, and my eyes well. My person disintegrates onto the granite tiled into a tangle of blood and tears and disregarded shrieks of sheer abhorrence and self-loathing. My being convulses with wails, and sobs wrack my frame. Guests and prior acquaintances of mine congregate in my vicinity, glaring in repugnance at the abomination that I now admit myself to be. They can now identify without doubt, a murderer. The conductor, with a gesture of his baton, draws the orchestra to a halt. I lay sprawled across the frigid surface, less than human, wishing myself release—yearning for cessation.