Out of Oxygen - John Fetto

Hawley stood at the sink, washing the blood from his hands, watching the red water circle down the drain, and breathing, long deep gulps, his chest stretching to collect enough oxygen to push the blood pulsing in his brain, but no matter how fast he breathed, there wasn’t enough. The bare light bulb of the washroom flickered, as if it too were gasping for air and with each pulse of light, the room disappeared in darkness as if the whole world stuttered and gasped, on the verge of deserting him in darkness because of what he had not done. He rubbed his hands harder, harder, no, he was wrong. He wasn’t being cast in darkness. The darkness had always been there. This wasn’t punishment. This was a test. He would get another chance. At least one chance. And the moment he thought that, his lungs caught a breath as easily as a boat’s sail opened to a warm breeze. He knew how to make it right. He would make it right.