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Whatever I Choose, We Die.

By Midnight, Aurora, IL

The man braces himself against a fire escape, deep in the cold heart of the city. Ten minutes more and this over. In his hand is the gun of unknown serial number, given to him by the gang members he used to call brothers. As the cold wind whips by he wonders, Had I not escaped? I thought I had until—the window exploded in, with men and angry voices, curses and knives, a crying child, and the one voice that cried, “You kill or she dies. This is your grand exit.” And in less than ten hours it would come down to now; come down to less than ten minutes.

Only ten minutes to take a life, to save a life, to change a life. Ten minutes to think, and a single moment left to act. He is ordered to be the instrument of Death. What choices brought him to this point? Rusty and unmaintained, the fire escape creaks agonizingly beneath him as he observes the guarded door across the street.

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