Konch Magazine - “Death and Kool-Aid” by Ciaran O’Donnell
 
Death and Kool­Aid
 
This story is about (name deleted) , who was at a shooting in the Outer Mission. It was still light out, in the afternoon. He was fourteen years old at the time.

     ​  It all began in May, last year. I decided to go to Big Lots and buy some kool­Aid. While in the store, I observed the cheap varieties of things they had to offer. One dollar bags of chips, five dollar chairs, etc. I went to the drink aisle and looked under the powdered drink mixes. I picked up two tubs of grape, one tub of cherry and one tub of tropical punch. I walked over to the cashier and dug around in my pocket for my money and coins. ​Pop! Pop! Pop​ ​!...​six loud pops went off in the distance. Wondering what it was, I ran out of the store, craning my neck to see what was going on. Two SUVs with their windows rolled down sped through Mission street right in front of me, leaving a cloud of smoke behind. I saw people running, in different directions. Questions raced through my head. I was confused and needed answers. I had a feeling that something bad had happened, but I wasn’t sure what. Then, as I got closer to the commotion, I realized what had happened. I almost walked right passed it, but there I saw it. A man, about thirty five years old, laid on his back with his legs rested on the sidewalk and his torso and arms sprawled on the street.​ ​He had been shot several times. The man’s chest didn’t move and a puddle of blood slowly crept out from under him. I decided not to linger so I kept walking. After a block or so, I realized I  had been clutching my grocery bags so tight, my imprints were on the handles and my knuckles were white. All of the features of the man were etched into my mind. As I walked unconsciously, all I could see was his blank, expressionless face, and his milky eyes rolled in the back of his head that seemed to stare at me. Everything was silent and all I could hear was the distant thud of my footsteps. Then, ​BOOM!​ I was snapped to attention by the loud wail of the ambulance. It flew down the street and pulled to a stop. Out of nowhere, a silver police car came racing down the alley I was standing in. I jumped back on the sidewalk and the car turned the corner. The stench of burnt rubber stung my nose. Lights still flashing and clouds of smoke in the air, a Police Officer hopped out of the car and ran over to the man, kneeling above him with his radio pressed to his ear. The man's face snuck back into my mind and I shook my head to get the image out. When I looked back, the paramedics were lifting the man onto a stretcher and bringing him into the ambulance. The Policeman walked around, clearing people out of the area and placing cups down in the street. Then, I 
went home.