Augusta sees Neville's parents in him.
Original story: A History of Violence by amathela, 1,472 words
Remix author: sophinisba
Witness (The History of Violence Remix)
“What would your parents say?”
It’s the phrase she’s used to cow him into compliance more times than she can count. She barely even thinks about it anymore, doesn’t hear her son’s quiet, confident voice or see the stubborn set of her daughter-in-law’s mouth at that last meeting, when they said, “We’ve got to go, we’ve got to fight him. We have no other choice.”
Only now Neville’s talking back, and she thinks, with all the joy and frustration and pain it brings her, that for the first time in his life he really looks and sounds like their son.
All that year Augusta keeps up her weekly visits to Ward 49 – wild horses or ministry goons won’t keep her away. When Neville comes home at Christmas she scolds him for letting his face get bruised; he apologizes but won’t change his ways. Meanwhile she wonders, will he soon be joining his parents in hospital, or will she add trips to the cemetery to her Sunday routine?
Then she goes to him, to join the battle, but for all her skill at dueling she ends up on the sidelines again, watching his body burn. He screams with his father’s voice.