A Pyrrhic Ripple

It was a crime of compassion, he would later insist, a moment’s peace forced onto her in the twilight minutes of her life.

She was alone. Forgotten as the world moved on around her, an urban castaway – the lives of the elderly are lived out on scattered archipelagos.

No woman is an island, until age weaves its ragged magic across lengthening telomeres, until it rides, rampaging through what remains of her memories.

The same bitter song was sung, the same bitter taste in her mouth. She gave you ebullience.



You give her death. A slow, sinister torture – her mind died, long ago.

Her mind died, as Alzheimer’s robbed her of her past and her children abandoned her to the future.

It was a crime of compassion, the pillow soft in his hands.


A crime of compassion, but a crime no less, as the final human flutter in her chest was extinguished.

He would do it again, the court heard.

They had heard enough – a confession of empathy, of murder.


It was a crime of compassion, an epiphany of peace, of beauty.

The punishment for murder is death.


Just a quick 200 odd words this morning, written for this week’s Trifecta prompt: sinister (it’s been too long since I’ve made their linky in time) as well as for one of the BeKindReWrite prompts: Crime of Compassion. Comments and criticism welcome!



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11 thoughts on “A Pyrrhic Ripple

  1. Paul says:

    My mother died from the effects of Alzheimers. You’ve caught a feeling for what we went through, even though her children did not abandon her and she died in her sleep. Still, your post makes me remember.

  2. karen says:

    Wow. This is quite the post, full of the elements that can be involved. All the grey areas to the story in juxtaposition with the absolute ending makes for a very compelling tale.

  3. This was hauntingly beautiful. The repetition worked wonderfully, and that final line was perfect. One of my favourites of you works.

  4. deanabo says:

    Terrific post. Your emotions really come through in this one.

  5. Draug says:

    Oh, powerful and very good.

  6. lexy3587 says:

    very well put and full of emotion.

  7. Parul says:

    This is raw with emotion and helplessness.

  8. Beautiful, sad, wrong and understandable. Also, a moving Pyrrhus reference.

  9. KP says:

    He would do it again … this could put an interesting turn into this tale. Would he show compassion in a similar case, or is he acting as God and choosing who and when? I like it!

  10. jordan 7 says:

    I truly appreciate this blog. Cool.

Comments and criticism always welcome!

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