Redemption for Murder

📅 Published on February 20, 2021

“Redemption for Murder”

Written by Tobias Wade
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

ESTIMATED READING TIME — 6 minutes

Rating: 9.80/10. From 5 votes.
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You can blame it on the alcohol, but that wouldn’t make me feel any better.  People drink every day without killing someone.  Besides, if I’m being really honest here, I probably would have still killed him if I’d been sober.

You can blame it on my childhood, too.  Something to do with my father not being around, or not sticking with school, or falling in with a troubled crowd.  That’s not quite true either, though, because I would have ended up even worse if I admired someone as selfish and unstable as my father.  And if the kids I knew were trouble, then it’s probably my fault for making them that way so I wouldn’t feel so alone.

I guess that leaves the blame on me where it belongs.  I knew exactly what I was doing when I borrowed the money in the first place.  Markie made it clear he’d taken the money from his father.  He said the old man was too senile to notice, though, which was fine with me since I never had any intention of paying it back.  I couldn’t plan six months in the future, but even if I could, I didn’t expect to still be alive when the bill came due.  But the money burned fast, and I always woke up again no matter how much I drank, until one day Markie comes banging on my door demanding something I didn’t have to give.

I could have opened the door that night and begged his forgiveness.  I could have sworn to get clean and told him about the jobs I’d considered and made an incremental payment plan to get him his money.  Sucker that he was, Markie probably would have believed me.  He might have even loaned me more if I’d been sincere about it.

Twenty seconds, maybe longer.  That’s how long I held the hammer in my hand and thought about what I was going to do.  More than enough time to change my mind before I opened my door.  I wasn’t even angry at him when I struck the first blow.  I was only angry at myself, and somehow it seemed like I could pour all my anger out of me and into him until he was dead and I was whole again.

Would it change your opinion of me if you knew I cried afterward?  Doesn’t matter; I’m not writing this for you to feel sorry for me.  I would have turned myself over to the police, or to God, but the police would act on me without understanding, and God would understand too much while doing nothing.  The only person I felt like I needed to confess to was Markie’s father.  He deserved to know where his money had gone and why he wouldn’t see his son again.  If anyone had the right to judge me, it was him.

I hardly recognized Mr. Methusa when I tracked him down.  He was a lot older than I’d remembered him. Back in the day, he caught Markie and me trying to break into a car together and he let us both have it with a belt.  He hardly looked strong enough to lift his cane now, but I was still more afraid of him than ever.  I was shaking from head to foot when he looked me up and down, slowly, agonizingly, as if he was deciding my punishment before I’d even told him what I’d done.  Before I knew it, I was on my knees, although I didn’t know whether it was to beg or because my legs weren’t strong enough to stand anymore.

“You’re late,” he told me.  “Where have you been?  I’ve been up waiting for you.  Stop playing around and come in, Markie.  I’ll get your dinner back in the oven.”

His mind really must be slipping to mistake me for Markie.  With those words he passed judgment over me, though.  Now it was my turn to make a choice.  I could break the old man’s heart and tell him that his son wasn’t coming home, or I could play the part and bring Markie back to life.  I let Mr. Methusa feed me and I stayed the evening with him, and the more he talked, the more convinced I was that I was doing the right thing in letting him believe.

His mind hadn’t completely gone.  He really had noticed the money Markie took from him.  And while I couldn’t apologize for what I had really done, I found solace in apologizing for all the things he blamed his son for.  Over the course of the evening I promised to make it up to him, to visit more often, to take him to the park to watch the ducks, and a hundred other things besides.

He marveled at Markie’s sudden transformation and insisted I stayed the night in the spare room.  After I’d gone to bed, he brought me a glass of water, kissed me on the forehead, and told me I was home.  Lying in bed in the dark, I cried for a second time that night.

I couldn’t forget what I had done, but that knowledge made me try all the harder to be everything Markie should have been.  Mr. Methusa had lived alone since his wife died four years ago, and he was overjoyed to have the company again.  He showed me all his old baseball trophies, and his eyes lit up with delight when I told him I forgot the stories and asked him to tell me again.  He had a big cupboard full of early musicals, and we’d watch one together every night.  For the first few nights, all I could think about was slipping out to get a drink, but every time I mentioned leaving, I’d see this empty look on his face and knew my duty was to stay.  Before I knew it, I was going days at a time without even thinking about alcohol.

Not long after, I found work at a pharmacy around the block and started making the old man’s money back for him.  It wasn’t hard to save up now that I wasn’t drinking, and he was letting me stay rent-free.  I honestly can’t remember a time when I was so happy.  I thought that this was how my life was going to be forever until the night we received an unexpected visitor.

It was around midnight when I heard the rustle of a key in the lock downstairs.  I got a flashback to when I lived alone in an area that got break-ins all the time.  I crept out of bed and spotted a flashlight beam lancing around the living room.  Part of me was afraid, but I knew I didn’t deserve to be here if I couldn’t protect what I’d come to care about.

I waited until the flashlight turned toward the kitchen before I crept downstairs.  The intruder was facing away from me, and I’d lose my chance if I waited any longer.  He might have had a gun, or a knife, but I had a bronze baseball trophy and an arm that had done this before.  I used the sharp corner of the base and got a clean blow in before the intruder could fully turn around.

The man crumpled to the floor, dazed but not out cold.  He started to crawl away, but I pinned him to the ground, ready for another blow.  It would have landed too if shock hadn’t stayed my hand.  Markie was lying on the floor below me, looking just as surprised and angry to see me as I was to see him.  His skull still looked slightly misshapen where I’d pummeled him with the hammer what felt like a lifetime ago.

I told him he was dead if he made a sound, and he believed me.  He wanted to know what I was doing there, but I still had him pinned and he was the one who had to talk.  Markie confessed that he’d recovered but had been too afraid to return to his father without his money.  He figured he could come back and steal again, then later blame the second robbery if his father ever noticed what was missing.

I then confessed what I had done, and that he wasn’t welcome back anymore.  I told him he was rotten through and through and didn’t deserve his father’s love.  He was angry, I was angry, and it was only a matter of time before one of us got loud enough to wake the old man.  If he saw us together he’d know I was an imposter for sure, and I wasn’t willing to give up the life I’d found.

It wasn’t the alcohol, after all. I proved that when I brought the metal statue down on Markie’s head again and again, not stopping until he was dead.  I was more careful this time and made sure to finish the job, cleaning and disposing of everything properly.  It didn’t hurt me the same as it had the first time.

Mr. Methusa hadn’t lost a son after all, but I had gained a father.

Rating: 9.80/10. From 5 votes.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Written by Tobias Wade
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

🔔 More stories from author: Tobias Wade


Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

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Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

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