I clutch my hand to my throat - like that's going to help - and stagger down the stairs. The lobby is empty.
Each breath feels like being stabbed with a serrated knife. There's not enough oxygen reaching my brain. I don't know what's happening. I don't know what caused it. I definitely don't care.
I need air.
I struggle to the front door. Outside the sun is shining. It's a crisp Autumn day and the cold air will revive me.
I trip over the couch by the door. My sternum hits the arm and I gasp. Air rushes from my lungs, the world tilts and suddenly I can breathe.
I drag as much air into my lungs as possible. Leaning on the sofa arm helps me orient myself. The oxygen rush to my brain is exhilarating. I slowly roll and collapse onto the couch.
A man's face fills my vision. With his nose almost pressed against mine, I can't help but see the rage in his eyes. "You did this to yourself."
With gloved hands, he picks up both of my hands. He wraps one of my hands around a paring knife and slowly forces me to slice across one wrist then switches hands. Weakened from the loss of air, stunned by his presence, I don't fight.
My hands drop to my lap, blood weeps onto my nightgown.
My gaze is glued to his, watching myself die in the reflection of his eyes.
He's right. I deserve this. I deserve worse.
I killed his son.