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by Neel Trivedi 


I became a murderer because Mommy told me to. 

I was eight years old when Daddy died. To make ends meet, Mommy started working long hours at the supermarket. At first, it was only till dinner time. Everyday, as I began

to set the table, the sound of clinking glasses and silverware would be joined by the dangling of keys and the headache inducing creaking sound of the front door opening. 

As our rent went up in the coming months, the creaking stopped and didn't come till

after midnight. To protect myself, Mommy taught me how to shoot my toy gun at the monsters under my bed. But I went a step further and started practicing the techniques using the real gun Mommy hid in the drawer. I even learned to use this piece called the silencer because I didn't want to get in trouble for disturbing the neighbors. 

I'd practice for hours on the little roaches that always dropped by in the summertime, hoping one day, I could surprise Mommy with my new skills. All that practice came in handy as Mommy always told me to always be wary and take the "proper action" against any intruder who I didn't recognize or looked strange. 

She never specified what exactly she meant by that so I used my own judgement and

shot anyone who I “didn't recognize.” So off went the milkman, the paperboy and the mailman when they shaved, got a haircut or changed their uniforms. 

If the police had asked me, I would have told them that I was just following Mommy's instructions. In all the TV shows I watch, self-defense is always forgiven.

But they never asked. Instead they arrested a man in our neighborhood who was supposedly a “reformed” killer. Whatever that meant.

Today's a special day. It's my favorite holiday, Halloween. It's the perfect day to surprise Mommy by telling her about how much I've grown up in the past few months. If I know Mommy, she'll ruffle my hair like she does when I bring home a good report card and say, “I'm proud of you, pumpkin.”

And to top it all off, I just killed my very first female. She looked a lot like Mommy

through the peephole except her hair was red and short. So I opened the door, quickly shot her and slammed it shut again.

I can't wait to tell Mommy when she comes back from her hair appointment.


About Neel


Neel Trivedi is a freelance journalist and in the advertising business in Dallas, TX. His work has been featured in Rhythm & Bones Magazine, Drabblez Magazine, Mojave Heart Review, Paragraph Planet, Dodging The Rain, Rising From The Ashes Anthology, Chronos Anthology, Fevers of the Mind Digest, ConverStory Anthology, Purpose Magazine and Elephant Nevers. He also writes for and can be reached on Twitter @Neelt2001.

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