Refute Me

By: Anushka Aritri Rahman

I think I just killed Prissy.

I mean, I didn’t mean it, but, she had it coming to her. This is what happened.

I was minding my own business, though some said seventeen was too early to do so, borrowing movies from the DVD sales rack, casually borrowing money from stray pockets, as they say, living the life. My friends, Tonz and Jinx, didn’t ever say a word when I told them to pass the weed, they knew who was boss. But, you see, my mom, or Prissy, as I liked to call her, never seemed to get it.

Sure, dad, or The Wannabe (boss) was always lagging around, but he couldn’t ever see past the booze. I knew who’s the boss. Me’s the boss. Me, Frister. Prissy never got it. She was always nagging, whenever she could catch me in the house, which wasn’t often. Most of the time, I come back round morning, to sleep the booze, weed, and various girls off. But she never got it.

One day, today, when I came back at around four this morning, I thought I was being gracious enough, making sure to wake The Wannabe from his hangover and Missy Prissy for her morning ‘cleansing’. The Wannabe went right back to sleep after mumbling a few swear words my way, but as soon as I’d crossed the front room, Prissy was standing there.

Look, I was especially high this morning, so you couldn’t blame me for saying what I did. I won’t repeat them to you, but I it was mainly about a gal gone wrong. I mean way wrong. Prissy looked at me, shocked, and after about a minute, told me that it was time I was sent away. Now, ‘away’ had a bad feel to it. I said straightaway, that I won’t go. She was the one who started pushing me towards the door to her room. Without thinking, I thrust my arm out to stop her, but hit her head instead. She went flying towards the cupboards with the silver in it, and the next second, there was blood everywhere.

I think I just killed Prissy.

After what felt like ages, I moved, not towards her, but to where dad was. He was still asleep. I breathed. Slowly, I went out the front door. I sat in the front porch, thinking about what I’d done.

I was still sitting there when the sun went done, and I was still sitting there when dad got up mumbling, cursing, and I was still sitting there when he found mom. When he finally came out and started screaming ‘Gina! Gina!’ I painfully looked around to look at his face. White-faced, red-eyed, he shook all over. I waited for him to start screaming at me, to accuse me of murder. He didn’t.

I was numb to all of the preparations he made. Too many changes were taking place. Dad was suddenly sober; mom was suddenly dead. The police had come and tried to ask me questions, but I was beyond them. They took -the dead body- for post – mortem to find out if there was foul play. I was still numb when the funeral came, and I was standing there in the starched suit someone had forced me into, when the police came again.

They had come with the results of the post-mortem, but I wasn’t to know that until later. All I knew was, a hot hand firmly clutched my right shoulder.


I woke up for what felt like a millionth time. How many times I have dreamt my life’s turning point seems now uncountable. It could just have been another day when I woke from this self-same vivid dream, but now I was, painfully, past all of that. I was labelled a delinquent and had had to go through a number of institutions before I became who I am today.

My father, now dead, died shortly after my mother did, ten years ago, from excessive drinking. I had improved a lot, it seems, in everyone’s eyes over the years. Now I’m a teacher at St. Buirenette. Sometimes, I really think that a week’s worth of detentions is not enough, but what can I do? I don’t have any authority in this community. I try not to think about it too much, but how much can one avoid?

I’m not in touch with Tony and Jean any more. I feel compelled towards going down memory lane sometimes, but I hold myself back knowing what I would find there; my past, and in large part of me, my present. Being a respectable, honest person in everyone’s eyes, didn’t fully change me inside, but is that so unexpected?

But I can’t let the police know that.


The story starts with a flashback, and the opening sentence is used to attract the reader’s attention and lead from one story sequence to another, as well as becoming the climax point in the story. The story is told from the protagonist, Frister’s point of view and he tells the story in an informal way.

The tone of the story indicates that he is trying to justify his actions, and uses vague words like ‘borrowing’ instead of ‘stealing’, and sharply accuses his mother of not understanding him, and repetition is used as a technique as he repeats himself to strengthen his arguments. The colloquial language shows his immaturity, and helps the reader contrast the change of monologue from seventeen to twenty-seven. The diction starts to sober up after his mother’s death, and completely changes after he wakes up, showing his mature self. His dream of the past starts to break when he mentions ‘… but I wasn’t to know that until later’, and he feels a firm hand on his shoulder.

A lot of rhetorical questions are used before the story ends, leaving the reader to ponder whether or not he will own up to his reality, and reveal his former, present and future intentions.