The ant inched rapidly towards my left foot. Skirting around puddles of bathroom water, miniscule flurry of many legs. How unfortunate it is to be an ant, I thought. Lower form of life in the most literal sense. Brain probably the size of a dust particle. Confined to a world no bigger than my white tiled unreasonably clean loo. I had time to waste feeling magnanimous. Decided to put the wretched arthropod (I presume it was an arthropod) out of what I was sure was intense misery. So I directed the hand shower at it and pressed down on the pressy-thing you press when you desire water. I still don't know what it's called, so I've furnished the necessary diagram.
Gush. As simple as that. The ant was now floundering in a pool of water mingled with liquid generosity. That was that. I resumed with my book, got through a few more paragraphs. Funnily enough, didn't recollect a word I read a minute after I'd read it. My eyes dragged themselves to the mini-ocean near my left foot. The ant was still a moving speck in it, legs thrashing furiously, not a peacable corpse as yet. This was troubling. In attempting to relieve the pitiable organism of its awful existence, I had damned it to an even stickier existence. It wasn't my fault, really. I was trying to do the right thing. If only the damn thing wouldn't fuss so and just die.
A harder squirt of water directed at it, point-blank range. But wouldn't you know it, when the mist cleared the accursed creature was still kicking and screaming and refusing to go quietly. I fidgeted a tad bit. How long would this continue? Its fragile body was probably irreparably damaged by now, and yet it refused to leave its base earthly form. Every jerk, every tiny squirm seemed a condemnation. I sat there uncomfortably. Ought I just press my big toe down on it and end this terrible game? Why did I feel like such a criminal? It was just an ant, after all.
I ran before very much longer. Keeping my nose pointed firmly into my book, trying to ignore the stirrings of motion that continued on the periphery of my guilty vision. Someone waiting outside to use the bathroom cast a rolling-eye glance at my towelled self and the door slammed in my face.
I stood outside, water dripping from my hair on to the doormat. Straining my ears for the last bugle call I felt sure was coming. Nothing. No gasp of a martyred soul released from Purgatory. Nothing but the humming of the taps, the hiss of hot water misting up the mirror. And the heavy throbbing inside me that found no release even long after the flood had dried.