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Mallard

In: English and Literature

Submitted By kdldaniels
Words 1142
Pages 5
Kyera Daniels
Dr. Simmons
ENGL 1182-01
2 February 2015
The Story of Mr. Mallard Brently Mallard struggled to describe to his friend, Richards, how he went on as if it were a normal day – the day his ex-wife, Louise Mallard, passed away.
“It was a regular day, or so I had thought,” he says, blinking rapidly, as if he were trying to hold back tears, “the day I lost Louise, a day I prayed I would never see,” he continued, “I did my normal morning routine. On my way out, I kissed Louise goodbye. There’s no doubt that I loved her. I had no idea that would be the last time I saw her wonderful smile. Such an amazing woman, inside and out. Sometimes I felt like giving up on her because of the heart trouble, but I quickly fell back under her spell − so kind-hearted and loving. I learned to deal with such…oppression, that is, knowing that it was something she had absolutely no control over. She was genuinely the woman I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. At times, I wish I had been the one to go that day. Then I imagine how she would have felt if I would have been the one to die. She sure wouldn’t have been any better off than I was in that moment. She sure wouldn’t be any more depressed than I am now…sure wouldn’t be any more uncertain about the future than I am,” he explained.
“It was such an unfortunate loss, Brent. I just can’t even imagine how you could live and move on from that,” Richards said.
“Well, Rich, it’s certainly not as easy as I thought it would be,” Brently explained, “and, not to mention, I still feel somewhat responsible for her death.”
Brently felt guilty for sure, but not so much as relieved, after the passing of Louise. It was almost as if he had been suffocating in his marriage, and now that Louise was out of his life, he could finally breathe after so many years of not being able to. Brently had no intentions of telling Richards (or anyone) how much relief he had felt when he woke up the morning after the funeral when he realized Louise was no longer a part of his life.
Richards closed his eyes and tried to remember that day as it happened − the last time he saw Louise and the last time Brently would have to witness Louise struggling with the burden of heart disease. Richards thought Brently must be relieved not to have to deal with Louise’s problems anymore.
“Brent, it’s been over a year since you lost your beloved wife. I never had an opportunity to do so, but I would like to apologize for causing this disaster. I blame myself for the death of your wife, being that I was the man who relayed the message to Josephine, assisting in the bearing of the horrific news to Mrs. Mallard, and ultimately causing her to die of a heart of attack. I am just so sorry, Brent. If there is anything I can do for you, even if it must be the most simple or most dangerous task, make it known to me and I will aid you. I do so sincerely apologize, Brent,” says Richard, anxiously wiping sweat from his palms onto his pants.
“No, Rich, no. How dare you blame yourself for such an event that you did not − and could not − have any control over? You were just as oblivious of the truth as Josephine and Louise were until the very second I walked through that door − just as oblivious as I was of the entire dilemma. Rich, this is certainly nothing you should be stressing yourself over. If anyone were to take the blame for the death of Louise, it would certainly be myself. Besides, I was the one who caused the initiation of the heart attack after all,” Brently clarified.
Knowing that he barely felt any guilt for the death of his wife, Brently went on to convince Richards that it was the absolute worst thing that has ever happened in his entire life. However, in reality, he felt exceedingly joyful and stress-free.
“You know, Brent, I have been wondering,” Richards said, arms crossed, “do you feel any type of comfort knowing that she is at peace now?”
“But why would I feel ‘comfort’ when my love, my life, my dear wife is dead, Rich?” Brently asked.
“My apologies. My intention was not to offend you by asking such a question. I think what I really mean is, with the heart disease and all, do you feel a sense of contentment in knowing that she does not have to suffer any longer?” said Richards.
“Well, when you put it that way, yes, I do. I feel pleasure in knowing that not only does she no longer have to suffer, but neither do I. I no longer have to watch her struggle. I no longer have to be pained by seeing Louise in suffering. I no longer have to be stressed. A burden has been lifted. I can finally be free, Rich. There is no more Louise − no more Mrs. Mallard. This is even better than I imagined!” Brently exclaimed.
Richards, with a shocked and confused expression on his face, said “Brent, what is going on? You are not yourself. This is a horrendous matter. You should not be celebratory due to the fact that Louise is gone. But, being as you are, I will not judge. You will soon realize, though, that this is no situation to be so delightful about. You will miss her, Brent. She was your wife, for Christ’s sake.”
Richards stood up and left, not even leaving a tip for the waitress. He had not wanted Brently to become aware that he was feeling the same way about the crisis. He knew Brently would have some relief, and that is the way he thought it should be. He was also glad that Louise was dead. The way she left was doubtlessly painful to watch, but he thought Brently should be happy that it was the last time he would have to experience that. But for some reason, Richards missed Louise’s presence.
When the waitress returned, Brently ordered another beer − his fourth one this evening. About thirty minutes later, he thanked the waitress and got up to leave, but before he walked out of the door, he turned back and asked for her name. “Lousie. Louise Martin,” she said, as she collected her tip. Brently stood there with a blank face until he realized that he was still staring at her. A tear rolled down his cheek as he walked out of the door. He missed his wife.

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