Today, I am pleased to bring you a bit of short fiction by Salvatore Buttaci. Check out more of his work--> Click Here!
I held her in my arms, mi hermana, broken and bloody, her life slipping away. My young sister Renata who loved all God’s creation, raped and beaten. Abandoned here for dead.
“Renata, no me dejes!” Don’t leave me!
She locked her dark eyes into mine in a stare I feared gazed through me and touched that final veil.
“Who did this to you, mi querida?
Bubbles of blood popped from black swollen lips. “Pañuelo,” she gasped. Handkerchief.
Quickly I withdrew from my back pocket a white handkerchief, shook it like a flag, then gently patted Renata’s lips. She moved her head away.
“No, no.” A faint whisper. “pañuelo negro.” Black handkerchief.
Then my sister’s head lolled towards her left shoulder where a last breath breezed against my trembling hand.
A black handkerchief…Words of delirium? A misunderstood whisper?
Not until five months later, on the eve of La Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, All Soul’s Day, did it come to me. At the grave of Renata, corazon de mi vida, heart of my life, I spoke aloud my prayers and my promise of venganza, sweet revenge.
At once, I saw in the muddled mind of my sorrow Renata’s unvoiced screams and the man with the black handkerchief now approaching her grave, a bouquet of carnations in his hand.
I threw all to the wind! My very soul into the pits of Hell! Dagger in hand, a family heirloom of honor, I struck down the dishonorable. Repeatedly I plunged the avenging steel into the heart of the demon Don Carlos, hurling him in a splashing aura of blood into the ranks of los muertos.
“Renata,” I whispered over her grave, “Descanse en el reposo ahora.” Rest in peace.
And the law would never have found out if it weren’t for the fingerprints of my gloveless hand on the dagger jutting from the demon’s chest.