Father Douglas eyed the parishioners lining up for confession and sighed. Father Brady asked, “What’s the matter?”
“Arnold Witter’s in line.”
“Every time there’s a big crime in the news, he comes here and confesses to it.”
“How do you deal with it?”
“I just give him his penance for lying and send him on his way.”
“It’s time to get started.”
Marcos reached the front of the line. This was beneath him, but what else could he do to escape Jones’ face? Why did it haunted him in his dreams like this? He’d killed many men before without a second thought. So why couldn’t he get a lick of sleep without valium?
He entered the confessional. Thank-fully, this parish didn’t know him. “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned.”
The priest asked, “How long has it been since your last confession?”
Good question. How long had it been? “Twenty-six years.”
“I see. So what is this sin?”
“I killed an innocent man, that Rev-erend Jones. I can’t get him out of my head. I don’t feel any guilt over hiring that guy with the rocket who killed all those people compared to what I did to that Reverend.”
“So you not only killed Reverend Jones, you’re responsible for all twenty of those deaths downtown.”
“We all make mistakes, son. Say five Our Fathers and three Hail Mary’s.”
What? “I just told you I killed a man.”
“And I just told you to say five Our Fathers and three Hail Mary’s.”
“But I’ve killed a lot of people”
“I know. Just say five Our Fathers and three Hail Mary’s. That’ll suffice.”
“But it’s not going to—”
“You could confess to the police if you would like.”
“Fine, I’ll say the penance.” Marcos left.
The parishioner after Arnold said, “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned.”
Douglas still didn’t look up. “How long has it been since your last confession?”
“What is this sin?”
“I killed Reverend Jones and all those people downtown.”
Oh no. Father Douglas peered through the screen at the confessor. “Arnold! If this is you, then who…” He cupped his mouth. He raced from the confessional.
Only the normal parishioners remained outside. “Oh, my God! What have I done?”
A few hundred feet away, Marcos rose up from his penance. Reverend Jones’s face greeted him. “Father, forgive him…”
Never. God would never forgive him.
Subscribe to Laser & Sword by Email to get the next part and all the rest of our free offerings delivered to you. To find out what happens sooner, visit the Laser and Sword Online store and download Issue 1 for free or purchase the Annual Editioncontaining 11 action packed stories