Tuesday, October 19

Cain's Story

CAIN: Well, um...I guess I have to talk. (THERAPIST hands Cain the ball) I’m Cain I was the oldest.  I guess the thing you want to know is whether or not I did it.  I did... (Looks down into his lap and turns the ball in his hands intently focused on it)  I didn’t mean it and I didn’t want it to happen.  (There is a long pause.  His voice breaks occasionally like he is on the verge of tears)  There was this girl that I liked.  I’m really shy and I don’t talk much.  Abel talked all the time, and all the girls really liked him.  Because I was the oldest, though, I had my choice, and I don’t want that to seem like she had to be with me, but I really wanted her to be with me...

(There is a long, uncomfortable silence.)
THERAPIST: Cain, can you continue?  We can come back to you in a minute if you would like.

CAIN: (Begins with more fervor and anger, griping the ball very tightly in his hands; squeezing) No.  My brother was always better at things than me.  He was the favorite with mom and dad.  All the girls loved him and wanted to be with him.  She wanted to be with him.  I could have given her more than Abel could have given her.  I actually loved her.  He only loved the idea of loving her.  He was too concerned with himself.  Nothing I did was ever good enough.  I provided for my family and I served God.  What more did I need to do?  What more could anyone...

THERAPIST: Please continue Cain, you are doing great! (smiles curtly) Please include only “I” statements.  This is your story, no one else’s.

CAIN: (Speaks quickly while his eyes wander back and forth around the room firmly griping the ball in his right hand the entire time)  One day I was in the field gathering food and grain because it was autumn.  It would be cold soon and we were going to need a supply of food for the winter months when there was less produced.  I was hungry and I ate something.  I offered the rest to God, and Abel came and told me I was an idiot for thinking that God wanted anything I gave him.  God needed what was best, not my stupid scraps.  I know that God needs what is best, and I know that God wanted me to have the things that he had given me and to be grateful for them as well.  Abel wouldn’t hear it and he kept yelling at me.  We were alone.  I was supposed to stand up for myself.  I decided that I wouldn’t take it anymore, so I told him to, ‘shut up.’  He just kept yelling and I couldn’t think straight.  I couldn’t put my thoughts together, and I couldn’t say anything that made sense.  It all came out the wrong way.  I told him that he didn’t know what he was talking about and that he had everything he could ever ask for and God didn’t want what he had to offer because it wasn’t a good offering.  Abel was a jerk and he had her.  The girl I loved wanted to be with Abel.  She didn’t want me.  She chose Abel over me.  (his voice gets louder)  I could never have given her everything she deserved, she was perfect.  I would have done anything for her, and she still chose Abel.  He was such an ass.  I tried to tell her that he didn’t love her.  He couldn’t love, and he didn’t know how but he was more handsome and more eloquent than me...so she chose him.  

(He stands up, moves outside of the circle and starts pacing around the room.  Everyone is watching closely as his voices gets louder and his anger mounts)  

He just kept yelling at me.  I know he is bigger than me, much stronger than me.  I was quick.  I had had enough of it.  All my life I was never good enough for anyone.  I never could do the work well enough for dad, and I could never be pious enough for my brother...the hypocrite.  I don’t remember exactly what I thought would happen, but I picked up a rock.  It was not a big rock, just a palm-sized stone.  Abel was too busy berating me to notice.  I was low to ground and I looked up at Abel and just threw it.  (Throws the ball against the wall.  Everyone jumps, startled) It was so liberating.  He didn’t know what had happened, and before he could process it, I picked up another and threw it.  Then I picked up another, and another.  We wrestled on the ground for a long time...he was much stronger than I was, but I had this rage inside of me that I needed to let loose.  

(He stops pacing and his voice quiets back to normal.  He talks slowly, every word carrying immense weight)

I didn’t intend to harm him.  He was bigger than I was, but then he stopped moving.  His neck twisted...it’s still a blur, somewhat...but I did it.  I won’t deny it, I just didn’t mean for it to happen...(sits back hard into his chair, staring off into nothing, dazed)

THERAPIST: That was very good Cain, I appreciate your honesty and your feelings.  I am very impressed.  Would you like a drink of water?

CAIN: (He doesn’t say a word but stares straight ahead at nothing in particular.  His eyes water and tear falls down his cheek)

THERAPIST: Well done, Cain.  Now, Pharaoh?  (THERAPIST stands, picks up the ball, and hands it, non-plussed, to PHARAOH, who takes it, looking at it quizzically)

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1 comment:

  1. LOVE this. Love the depth behind the deed, and the so-logical idea that a girl would be at the root of things. Add a little sibling rivalry and of course he had some reasons to kill. Love the setting of the counseling session, and use of the therapist to carry the story along. Love the natural ebb and flow of Cain's emotions as he recounts the crime. Lovelovelove the ending. Please say there is a sequel.