It is a cold windy day. The sky is bleak and gray. He is a single, solitary figure sitting on a brown wooden park bench. He is wearing a brown overcoat and grey cap. He looks forlorn and lonely. There is nothing special about him. He is everyman. He could be anyone and anywhere. He is the type of person whom no one notices.
He does not feel the cold because his mind is elsewhere. Many thoughts race through his mind: of his parents and how they have always supported him; of his wife and two children: of the beautiful home that they have. He thinks back to his university days and his graduation from business school. He remembers how happy he was when his M.B.A. led him to a series of successful jobs, including the position that he held until recently. They are happy thoughts and race through his mind over and over again.
More unpleasant thoughts now enter his mind. They are of a previous day and time that he does not want to relive. Yet he has relived them every moment and every second since the event occurred the day before. He was sure that he would never be found out. He would put the firm’s money back. He only needed it to pay off the men he played cards with and the men who owned gaming tables he was so bad at.
The confrontation the previous evening had not been a pleasant one. He was working late and at his desk when his superior called him into his office. The company accountant had discovered the missing money and traced it back to him. His superior threatened police and imprisonment. There were only three people in the company offices that late evening. He apologized and begged for a chance to make things right. His superior would not hear of it. He could not let that happen he told himself. But he had not meant to use the knife. It was just sitting on his superior’s desk. He had lost control, he told himself after it happened. He was not so sure, however, when he silently made his way to the accountant’s office, carrying the same knife. This time he did mean to use the knife. He justified everything that happened by telling himself that he had come too far in his personal life and business career to have it destroyed by two narrow-minded men who thought nothing of wrecking his life. He was not prepared to take responsibility.