It’s seven whole days since my younger brother careened to his death from the scaffold beside me at the construction site. One moment he was nattering away; the next moment his voice was snuffed out. How could the God I had never stopped believing in do this? Destroy what he must have created with effort in one impulsive stroke like a playful child stomps down a joyfully built sand castle…

It didn’t matter that I never became a teacher. That I built magnificent houses but would only live in a makeshift shanty all my life. That the chemicals at my workplace would kill me before time. But my brother’s dreams mattered. He’d wanted to run a food stall. His culinary skills would make it the most sought after one in town, he’d told me in all earnestness. This construction job had been a means to the end – capital for his business. Our hopes for him had grown with every cent that went into his piggy bank. His optimism had begun to rub off on me.

I reached for the rusted kerosene can full of pesticide. I drank to my brother’s dreams and the death of them.

Sunday Photo Fiction 

Word count: 196

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