There was a deafening bang. The blast tore a bloody chunk out of the back of his skull.
Slock Cockley was overcome. "WOW!" he finally screamed out, over the thunderous applause of the audience. "How about that! An in-credible finish for Mr. Bill Flunk! And how! Not even a suicide note to set it up!"
The Infamous Omnicam zoomed in on Bill Flunk's tear-streaked dead face, staring up from where it lay on the floor. His head was wreathed in blood. His eyes slowly clouded over as the audience continued to applaud.
"And now, ladies and gentlemen," The announcer boomed, "the moment you've all been waiting for...You've followed his wretched life for forty years...you've seen his wretched death...and here he is...the one...the only...B-i-l-l-l-l FLUNK!"
The applause was deafening. The band played introduction music. From one side of the stage a door opened, covered in blinking lights, and in stepped the one and only Bill Flunk. The lights glinted off his filmy corpse-eyes and waxy skin. Dried gore hung from the hole in the back of his skull. His remaining hair frayed out over the opening, blackened with gunpowder residue. He smiled, a bit bewildered, showing gaps in his teeth from the blast; but on the whole he looked fit and confident – more so than when he had been in life.
"Bill!" Cockley said, as soon as they'd shaken hands and the celebrity guest had taken his seat. "You've just committed suicide, and now you're on the set of The Show! Good to see ya!"
"Good to see you too, Slock!" Bill replied, looking around with interest. "Man, you've got a swell place here!"
"Not that that's much of a compliment, Bill – you've blown out most of your visual cortex!"
The drummer sounded a rim shot, and the audience guffawed. Bill laughed too.
"But seriously," Cockley said, "I have to ask, Bill – what was it like to commit suicide?"
"Well, it was kinda like sex or cocaine, Slock; you just have to experience it."
"You're telling me! What a way to go out!"
"Aw, it wasn't much," Bill said, blushing modestly. "When you live a life like mine, suicide is a great alternative. It wasn't really hard at all – I just did it!"
Whistles and applause. Flunk grinned his corpsey grin.
Cockley beamed. "Incredible. How do you think this has effected you? I've heard from some of our previous guests that suicide is "therapeutic"...is that correct?"
"Oh definitely, Slock. The most therapeutic thing in the world. Solved all the problems I ever had – permanently! I feel so much better now, Slock; you've got to try it sometime."
"Oh, trust me, that's the first thing on my list!" He gave a knowing wink to the audience, and they snickered weirdly. "Now, as I recall, Bill, you tried to commit suicide once when you were, what...fourteen? Fifteen?"
"Yes, that's right."
"What happened there, Bill?"
"Well, Slock, I was in a lot of trouble with drugs and girls and gangs, and I hated my family. My mom's boyfriend was abusive to me and my mom – I tried to kill him that day, and he broke a few of my ribs.