Last night I realised that I have no idea how to stab someone to death. That seems like a skill that person in this day and age should have. Doesn’t it? I was prompted to this realisation by a dream:
I was somewhere up high watching the end of the world from a window. First the ground buckled up and down, pushed from below by thousands of hands and when it settled, I could see below me ranks of naked men with knives. A figure walked up and down between the ranks and at some point gave some sort of signal, and the men broke up and started heading for the nearby houses. It turned out that each man was accompanied by a small child, also armed with a knife. At each house, the child would gain entry by wriggling through a small-child-sized gap – an open window or a vent or something – let the man in and they would, presumably, get to work on the sleeping inhabitants with their knives.
I knew it’d be the turn of the house I was watching from, and soon enough heard the sound of what I assumed to be a small knife-wielding child running through the bottom floor of the house. I don’t know if there were people on the lower floor, but presumably they were getting their allotted stabbings. Moments later, her accompanying naked man ran up the stairs to the floor I was on and suddenly I was fighting for my life. I had a knife as well – a big, thin carving knife – and after I managed to disarm the man and knock him down, I then found myself in a position to stab him to death and it occurred to me I had no idea how. Isn’t that the sort of thing a father should be expected to know?
It seems easy in the movies – one quick thrust anywhere and the person goes down (unless they’re the hero, in which case they’ll have forgotten the wound existed 15 minutes later). But when I actually think about it, where do you actually stab someone to kill them on the spot? Sure, puncture a lung and they’ll probably cop it if they don’t get it looked at, but assuming you don’t have the time to wait for them to bleed to death, it has to be the heart, right? But then there’d have to be all sorts of complications with ribs and breastbones and shoulder blades getting in the way.
I don’t know, it’s starting to seem like I should leave fatal stabbings to the professionals.