The baby wails on. D’Onah reaches first for the girl. He lifts her limp hand, raises a bunch of blood-soaked hair from her bloody face. He retches heavily, with a sinking feeling of despair. He has no time to prepare before the chair whips into his back, rocking him forward. When he turns, his assailant is there on his chest.
“Styne, you piece of shit.” His voice hardens with rage and hate. “You killed her.”
“Yes? I didn’t mean to.” Just as the shock from the response begins to sink in, he adds, “And I’m not sorry. If we don’t stay with our son together, then neither of us will…She deserved to die.”
D’Onah has never so challenged in his life, so angry. “I regret that you came from my loins, Styne. I despise the day you were conceived. I detest every moment I spent in my life calling you my son.”
The anger spreads in Styne’s face. “That was exactly what got your wife killed. Yes…” he taunts as he gets his father’s attention. “Did you ever imagine how that accident under the tree happened? Branches don’t just snap off, do they? It takes more than the wind to do something like. Let’s just say I helped nature a little…”
He doesn’t finish the statement. It takes D’Onah a second to realize what he’s hearing. To think he’s just heard how his wife met her death, at the hands of her own son. He rushes into Styne with the full impact of his body.
Prepared, Styne swerves slightly then adds some force to shove his father into the wall. He catches him by the shirtfront, throwing a series of punches into the old man’s chest. When he lets go, D’Onah sinks to the floor, clutching his middle.
“Styne,” he manages through teeth painfully clenched. “You are a disgrace of a son…All my life…I hoped that one day…just once…you would turn out…better than what I thought…”
“Where did I go wrong? Is there something I was supposed to do as a father that I didn’t do…why has my life with you been filled with so much grief? What on earth could your mother have done to you…to cause you to kill her…?”
Styne comes over to him and pulls him up by his shirt. “How about I let you join her, old man, and put you out of your misery?” he drags D’Onah by the shirt…toward the window, a floor-to-ceiling pane.
Short of the window, D’Onah puts his weight behind Styne and rams the man into the window. He hears the sound of shattering glass, then a more distant shatter of glass as shards break six floors below.
Styne hangs to the floor of the room, his legs dangling beneath him in the air, outside the broken window. He looks up, an urgent plea in his eyes. “Daddy, help me up.” He grabs at a support; the glass lets loose in his grip. He transfers his support to a stout portion of the ledge from where the glass had been dislodged. His fingers hold onto the glass that cuts into his hands. He hangs on for life. “Daddy, please… You are not going to let me fall.”
“Says who?” D’Onah looks at him with running, burning hate in his eyes. Suddenly he is like a stranger. “Why should I help you? You wanted to kill me a while ago.”
He guffaws uneasily, teeth bared in anguish. “Daddy, did you really believe I would have done that?”
“I don’t believe a lot of things. But that isn’t one of them unfortunately. Seeing what you just did to Nari…” his voice catches in his throat. He looks at the lifeless body on the floor, then the wailing child in the bed. He walks to the edge of the window and looks down at Styne with a cold, haughty expression in his eyes. “Styne, I hate to tell you this. But I have thought about this for a long time and I have just come to a decision. I am sorry…but your son is better off without you.”
There is dismay in Styne’s eyes. D’Onah lifts one foot, and then presses it down on one hand that clutched onto the glass, pressing it further into the jagged edge. The pain sears the nerves and brain. Styne screams, hangs on for longer, enduring the pain. It is a battle of wills.
Then he lets go. Arms flailing, lips cursing, he descends through the air until a thud announces his arrival on hard earth six floors below.
D’Onah bends to move the bloody hair out of the Nari’s face. He touched the bruises. “I’m sorry,” he murmurs reverently. “You didn’t deserve any of this.” A tear formed in his eye. “I’m sorry I couldn’t get here earlier. Sorry for everything you’ve had to go through.” He stands, goes over to the bed and picks up the wailing baby. A tear drops on the infant’s face. He cradles the infant close to his chest and whispers, “What is going to happen to us?”