What can YOU say in six sentences?
Xavier Tito’s eleventh-hour reprieve was rejected by the Republican Governor, whose re-election and political future, the news said, depended on the Governor’s continued “get-tough-on-crime” policies to win over the remaining fraction of undecided suburban voters who held an abiding abhorrence of inner city crime.
A few minutes before dawn at Beaumont Federal Penitentiary, the guards unlocked Xavier Tito’s cell, handcuffed the three-time felon’s hands directly in front of him—so that it would appear to the gathered witnesses as if he’d been praying---then led the unrepentant prisoner to the execution chamber, where he was immediately strapped to the waiting green gurney. Two men from the injection team stepped forward to connect Xavier Tito to the electrocardiogram (EKG), so that the beeping machine could monitor the prisoner’s final heart beats. The sheets emanated a familiar, creosote-like scent of the industrial detergent they’d been freshly laundered in, the night before, in the prison laundry.
The prison’s head nurse—a woman far prettier than one might expect to find in this line of work— floated to Xavier’s side, and efficiently swabbed with alcohol the tattooed site of the death-beckoning injection of pancuronium bromide. She did so, just as the prison’s medical protocol instructed—“to prevent any possibility of infection.”