He wants to prove a point. If you do wish it, you can choose your date of death. God is not immortal, neither is he all-knowing. Man makes his plans and decides his fate, not God.
On his birthday, Bruno decides to take his own life. To prove God is not all-powerful. To prove a man can choose death over life without being frustrated or depressed or mentally ill.
He goes to his physician and does a thorough medical test to prove to the world he is not already dying.
He takes his wife to dinner with his son and daughter, and make love to her afterward, to prove his marriage is sound. Then two hours to the end of the day, while his beautiful family is fast asleep, he goes into his study and makes a speech. He curses his creator, and damns all believers.
He fills a mixture of chemicals thoroughly researched and proven to kill within minutes into a 300ml glass cup. Taken, the volume can kill ten men.
Bruno looks into the glass. “This is it,” he murmurs.
His video camera is trained on him. This epic event must be captured worldwide. Man can choose to live or die.
The recording is programmed to be published on his blog as soon as he is dead. His blog has over fifty thousand followers. They will watch Bruno take over the most feared duty of God.
He smiles and drinks his poison.
This is how he planned it all. He then lay on his couch, and close his eyes. A moment before he loses consciousness, he mutters, “The end.” Just as he had planned it.
He should be dead in ten minutes. The video recording will end and automatically convert into a file posted on his blog.
The housekeeper will discover him. She cleans the study every morning. She will scream and alert the household. By then, some of his friends would have watched the video but assume it’s a joke. Surely Bruno would not do a thing like this!
Bruno is smart, and successful and rich. He’s a computer programmer and designer so yes, he can pull off such a joke. Besides, it’s April first. Bruno just planned the mother of all foolhardy. His name will be in the news all over the world. The perfect visual effect never seen.
A smile plays on Bruno’s lips at the thought and for a moment, he’s startled. Should something not be happening by now?
He opens his eyes and a wave of nausea overpowers him.
“No. I can’t throw it up. No.”
He clenches his teeth and for a moment the dizzy spell disappears.
And so Bruno struggles with nausea. Surely, someone must have mixed the bottles. But no, it’s not possible. He has to die today, now. He checks the wall clock and it’s a quarter to midnight. If he doesn’t die in the next fifteen minutes, he’s dead. Surely the post would have been published by now. His silly speech about God not being real. About man’s choice to choose death over life.
This can’t be happening.
The poison has been in his blood for almost an hour.
He stumbles to his desk and looks at the four empty bottles. What on earth? The labels are the same. The poisons are the same. Why is it not working?
He’s tried this on his mother’s lovely cat and she died within minutes. He’d bought two mice and tried the mixture on them too.
And the family dog died two days ago, from this experiment.
“Why am I alive?” He swallows. “I must die.”
Bruno runs to the kitchen, and pukes just in time into the sink. He heaves continuously for another five minutes and slumps to the floor. Okay, he’ll have to stab himself now. But a knife-wound would be so painful.
He drags his face to the kitchen clock and it’s five minutes after midnight. The deal is over.
He bursts into tears. “God, why? Why do you do this to me?”
Even if he dies now, it’s no longer his choice date.
A voice encourages him to go ahead. Oh yesterday was your first choice but today is your second choice. Pick the knife.
But Bruno wants to know why the poison didn’t work. He staggers back into his study, and looks at the bottles. He’s emptied them all so there’s no more to test.
He switches off his video and goes to his bathroom to have a shower.
“Okay, so you’ve won this round God, but I’m gonna get you.”
He slips into bed and his wife snuggles up to him. “Where’ve you been?”
You don’t wanna know. He presses a kiss on her head. “In the study.”
She mumbles, “Hmm, a new program on the way?”
Tears gather in his eyes. He knows. He realizes now. “This one will blow the minds of the world, baby.”
She leans on her elbow. “Tell me about it.”
Bruno can’t help this. “God is real. I just met him in the study.” He bursts into tears.