Sewage

Summary: Eric Easton ran over a homeless woman on his way to work, dismayed only because she spoiled herself on his expensive car. He finds other reason than remorse or law to worry.

Eric Easton ran over a woman on 30th Street, in the hours long before morning. He smelled her from inside his car, as her helpless body ragdolled over his hood. He looked into his rear-view mirror, seeing the bag-woman lying prone on the street. He saw her twitch, and she continued until he reversed over her head.

Eric floored it after that, least anyone else on the deserted street call him. He felt a tinge of regret for his impulsive murder, more from fear of consequences than remorse. His job as in a financial firm was full of impulsive decisions, ones that crashed the world economy and passed private debt to public hands. Ones that ruined a million lives he'd never interact with personally. Yet a million driven to suicide was a statistic, but a single hit-and-run was a murder.

Eric felt a smell in his cubicle as he began the day. It smelt of soiled pants and unwashed clothes, like the stench from his fateful encounter that morning. He dismissed it as nothing, although it followed him throughout the day. He tried dismissing it as his portly colleague Marvin's flatulence, but this was far more persistent and putrid. The first day passed with the police calling for him, partially lifting the dread on him.

The first month passed with the police calling Eric. Hit-and-runs were regularly unsolved in the city he lived, especially of the homeless. Despite this, he contacted the best lawyers he knew, just in case. The fact he was in finance made such inquiries typical, instead of suspicious. Yet the peculiar stench came and went, seemingly of its own accord. Even moving his desk to another floor did not dispel the problem, although he did not miss Marvin passing gas.

Eric stayed late and came early to work. It was on such an early drive that he made his fateful, impulsive killing. He came in at a similar hour two months later, and he thought he heard something in the restroom. As the only one in the building aside from the security guard, he entered. The lights in the restroom activated, as motion sensors registered his presence. He heard something splash in a toilet stall, grabbing his attention. A single toilet was overflowing, dribbling sewage onto the tiled floor. He found himself catatonically drawn to it, though his mind told him to run.

The janitor found Eric during his morning rounds of the bathroom. A sewage backup had caused some toilets to overflow, which he had to clean up. The banker's head was stuffed face down in bowl, specifically the only one overflowing with human sewage. Eric, he reasoned, must've fallen unconscious, plunged face-down in the overflowing toilet, and drowned in human sewage. It was a truly shitty way to die.

The janitor sighed as he alerted security and the police. It wasn't the first time someone died in the building. He was fortunate he had a job at all, for his sister lost hers and was out on the street, only to die in a hit-and-run. They never found the culprit, nor cared much to. All he had left was his job, but at least he kept clean of the truly awful sewage.