Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Fear


Frank smiled, then nodded, as the family left the subway train. He liked a chat, a chance to smile, as he’d enjoyed life so far. Of course, as was sometimes the case, he didn't wish to intrude but the life of an 84-year-old pensioner wasn't that exciting any more. The same day, each day, the morning subway journey for food and maybe, just maybe, he’d bump into friends.


It was a Tuesday. A solitary Tuesday within his week. He liked Tuesday, for no apparent reason, other than it was another day that life allowed him to remain in this place. He had family, a few remaining friends, who seemed to have drifted further away with the distance increasing. The warmth, however, remained. He was a good man, so they said, as he dare not assume anything other than to be down to earth. Frank closed his eyes, for a second, smelling the pie that someone had brought onto the train. It smelled like heaven, a meaty heaven, which quickly meant that he’d soon have the same food. It was always a choice between the shopping mall’s food compendium. Chicken, salad, beef burgers or, possibly, a hot dog from the van outside. Choices. Everything a choice.

The subway train stopped again, with only three more stops to go, as a whole new selection of people arrived onto the train. Opening his eyes as the doors shut, he glanced along the train’s interior welcoming the new faces with his ever-present smile. He loved this, all of this, the people watching, the new hairstyles, the crazy clothes and more. He could spot distress within the calmest of faces. He’d seen so many tears, usually as the youngster’s face pressed their eyeballs to their phones, which was the latest trend that didn't seem to be going anywhere. People and their phones. Constantly avoiding other people without even knowing the causality of their actions.

Frank watched as three youngsters walked towards where he was sitting and, with ease, jump onto the seats around him. He smiled and nodded at the supposed main character of the bunch, who’s hair seemed to have a life of its own. He was chewing gum with his mouth open, with a look of mischievousness about him, obviously making a statement wherever he went. The other two, slightly younger, following his lead.

Frank looked out of the window, noticing the main boy gathering the attention of the other two and, as expected, the boy leaned forward, “Hey, old man, that’s my seat you’re in?”  Frank would laugh but he knew that would intimidate the boy. He’d lived a long time, had his arguments, his fights, even punched a few people, but he’d remain calm as he was in no real position to argue. Facts, to Frank, usually worked. Leaning forward to within a few inches of the boy, Frank calmly spoke in a clear and precise fashion,

“My boy, I've been travelling on this train for over 12 years, each and every single day. This is the first time I've seen you!”

The boy smiled, looking to the others for some type or moral support or confirmation, as Frank rested back onto his seat. The boy, obviously not expecting the reply, repeated his statement, “Old man, that’s my seat!” Frank, shaking his head, placed his hands together, finger to finger, palm to palm, then, lowering his head slightly, started to say a phrase just under his breath. The boy, confused, didn't quite know what to say, “I can’t hear you, old man?”

Frank continued to repeat the phrase, each time increasing the volume slightly, calling upon something that he’d not touched for many a year. In his day to day life, many years previous, he was a priest, a self-sacrificing priest, until he’d found a very old, dusty book. He’d read that book, cover to cover, over and over again. It destroyed his faith. It removed his ability to try and dissolve other’s pain and fear. It meant that he’d turned his faith into a new life. The book explained emotions, the path of how to feel, how not to feel, as well as channel aggression and hatred into a new form of energy. He knew that everything, as well as everyone, were connected but he also knew that each person had the chance to become judge, jury and executioner of their own lives.

‘Free will’, was how he summarised the book. Free will removed the need for gods and deities, the reasoning behind so many things, falling into an abyss. His life changed, his entire view of things evolved, every moment of his life becoming clearer. Cause and effect, everything happening for a reason, the usual placid statements repeated by so many people, becoming real. Everything connected.

Frank repeated the chant, again and again, much to the boy’s frustration. Finally, the words could be heard, “Leave us alone!” repeated Frank. Over and over. As the moments moved, the boys watched as the other train passengers stood, all chanting the same sentence. The same words. The boy pressed himself into his seat, moving closer to the side of the interior. The boys felt fear rise within them, wanted to hide, as all the passengers appeared next to the four of them. All chanting.

“Leave us alone!”
“Leave us alone!”
“Leave us alone!”
“Leave us alone!”
“Leave us alone!”
“Leave us alone!”


Frank’s voice started to fade as the other passengers turned to walk back to their seats, the words returning to a whisper, then a murmur, finally ending as he closed his mouth. Placing his hands to either side of his legs he smiled at the boy, “Would you like this seat?” The boy, shaking his head, the look of fear across his face, pushed his friend out of his seat as the three of them quickly walked away from Frank.

He knew, Frank damn well knew, that no bully, no matter how fierce or strong, or even stupid or away with the fairies, could stand up to the ‘force of many’. Strong in numbers, together, removing the fear of the single man. All it needed was someone, anyone, to simply make a stand. Frank returned to looking out of the window.

Today was going to be a good day. A fun day. With possibly a pie of some description. This, the simple things in life, made Frank happy.

Thursday, 6 December 2018

Sacrifice


Simon watched as the room filled with nearly every single person available. The feeling, within that space, was one of grief and sorrow. He’d heard the stories, the losses, despite their supposed technical advantage. The enemy was simply far too aggressive, adaptable, which meant for all their bravado, numbers and armour, they didn't stand a chance.


He noticed the room falling into silence, every single person standing to attention, as the commandant arrived to take the stand. His face looked forlorn, despondent, the look of a broken man. Simon had never seen him look this way, in all their years serving together, but times changed, and people changed. Everyone sat, the various coughing breaking the silent for moments at a time.

The commander stood in front of them, just looking at the many faces, the memories, the moments that they’d all shared together. Of course, as Simon knew, most of those moments involved jamming a gun into a face and pulling the trigger but nevertheless, they’d all bonded. They all had each other’s back despite often wanting to knock each other out. Humanity, rats in a cage, seldom allowing themselves to think of a better day.

Opening a folder, on the stand, the commander pressed the com button and started to speak, “At zero-eight-zero-zero hours, yesterday, we received news that the last colony on this planet was decimated by the enemy. No survivors. Not one soul.” The commander looked down at the ground, fighting his emotion, knowing what he’d lost the day before. His family, everything he’d cared for, all gone. “In the next few hours we will have the fight of our lives unless, one person, takes part in an experimental mission. The volunteer will not be returning.”

Simon grasped the implications of what was being asked, instantly, as he glanced around the room. The commander continued speaking as Simon weighed his options and, without thinking or waiting for the details to be provided, he stood, “I accept the mission, Sir.” The entire room looked at him, in silence, as the commander stopped speaking. Normally, to interrupt a meeting in this fashion, would receive penalties but, in this case, he, as well as everyone else within the room, knew what the outcome would be.

The commander slowly closed his folder, throwing a side look to his immediate staff, then returning his view to Simon. “Son,” he said with respect in his voice, “If I could go on this mission I would but I'm not physically suitable. You have done your country a great service on this day and I salute you!” As soon as the words escaped from the commander’s mouth the entire room stood, saluted, then fell deafly silent once more.

Simon walked from the hall, slowly, dazed, thoughts trying to find him, but it was now too late. The freedom of his life, taken from him, by his actions, resonated within his mind. He walked along the corridor, the dark, green, rusting metal, seeming alien to him. His home for the last few years, a place that now felt cold.

He opened the door to the locker room, walked inside, to be greeted by a vacant space. No other soul, all probably in the food hall chatting about what had just happened. Simon sat on the end of the long wooden seat, resting his left shoulder against the cold wall, questioning his actions. The merits of doing such a thing, surely, to him, meant that his life was worth something. He wondered if everything he’d ever done, in his life, actually brought him to this moment. He searched within himself, for the reason as to why he’d done what he’d done, but couldn't magically find anything solid.

The door opened and in walked Bruce, his oldest friend. Simon looked up to the ceiling, for the briefest second, knowing that Bruce had an uncanny way of saying nothing, while saying everything. He was a man of little words. Instead of ‘hello’ you would always get a nod but when Bruce spoke, no matter the words, people listened. A thinker, the one that knew so much yet, as stated, said little. Simon smiled at Bruce, a lost smile, a sad smile, as Bruce sat across from him on the other long wooden seat.

Simon had seen violence, caused violence, yet deep within him rested an emotional person that simply wanted the violence to stop. Somehow. Someday. Simon looked at Bruce, reading his face, knowing that he might as well give in as Bruce could read him like a book. “I know. I know Bruce,” said Simon feeling a mixture of emotion, “Why did I do it? Truth be told I don’t know. I fight day in, day out, doing what’s right. I'm a good man. I respect everyone, within reason. I’d give anyone the world, if I could, yet who am I really?  The life of one child. You can’t compare that to my own. I've no wife, no children, an empty heart. I've pushed everyone away Bruce.  The big strong man hurting. Not able to let go of his Mother’s face, the love he’s lost. So damn me for wanting to do what’s right. The next time you see a child smile, think of me!”

The emotion, getting the better of him, escaped into the room. Simon knew that Bruce would never judge him, mock him, or run from emotion. This was not the person he was. Simon closed his eyes, not wanting to hurt any further, or to feel, as he hated that side of him with a passion. Bruce, concern written all over his face, leaned forward and said five words, “you’re doing the right thing.” Simon laughed through the emotion, knowing that, once again, Bruce was right. Simon held out his fist, to which Bruce fist bumped him back. The silly moments such as this, always made them smile.



Simon stood upright, the testing phase coming to an end. It had hurt, a few needles here and there causing issues, but so far everything had taken place without any issues. He’d never felt so strong, his body pulsing with whatever they’d done to him. It seemed odd, with all the tech around them, that it still came down to one man finishing the fight. The enemy could detect most of their advanced weaponry, which lead to bio-organic side arms being created. Virtual weapons made from bone. Gristle. Grown human parts made into something else. A near miracle found due to war, hunger, pain and suffering. He knew that this was the way of things, advancements mainly accelerated due to wars, for survival, which didn't make any of this any easier.
The scientist in front of Simon removed the last chest sensor, as he zipped up his flight suit. He’d never seen an outfit such as the one he was wearing, but appreciated the snug, elastic fit. The commander walked over to Simon, a proud look on his face, “You've been here a long time. Are you ready for this?”
“Yes Sir!”
“Are you sure? We could find ten other replacements? You’re an asset that we shouldn't lose!”
“Sir, it’s an honour and I’d rather do nothing else!”
Simon heard the words, the hubris in his voice, knowing very well that it was all fake. Inside, if it were not for the new experiences, the attention, as well as the ideal of a glorious ending, he knew that he’d fall to pieces. The mortality of things, the ending of moments, of life, all in front of him. It was too late anyway. Acceptance being the last moment of the rest of your life. He had, finally, accepted his role.


The hours moved past his eyes, the daze still holding him, as the many briefings escaped into the back of his mind. He knew what he had to do. Kill thousands of living, sentient beings in the blink of an eye. It didn't matter that they also had children, had families, as it simply arrived back to ‘us versus them’. The idiocy, the madness, the all-consuming political greed of all things. He’d laugh but that might have annoyed the person speaking in front of him. To him, or was it at him, he didn't really know any more.

Finally, his heart tamed by the boredom of the last hours of his life, Simon stood next to the small dart like craft. Bruce, by his side, the entire base personnel filling the hanger, he knew that he had to say something, anything, otherwise he might never be remembered. The guy that gave his life and said nothing before doing so. Simon looked at his hands, by his side, shaking ever so slightly. ‘To hell with it’, he thought as he stepped forward.

“I know that many of you don’t know me. You probably had no reason to do so. I'm the guy that you can depend on. Talk with. The one that’ll fix anything if he can. I'm the guy that will forget about himself to focus on whatever you need. Whatever you want. Today I'm going to be selfish. I'm going to leave here for one reason. We can all find something, or someone, even a place, to die for. I want to find a reason to live. I want to smile. I want us all to live, to find something, anything, anyone, to enjoy. To share. We’re human, we must feel. We must fight for something that’s more than what we are. Today I’m going to fight for every single child. Every single smile. When you wake tomorrow, I want you to say, ‘thank you’, not to me, not for this moment, but for having another day to make something work. Make things happen. Be more. Say more. Say less. Stand tall, don’t be afraid and most of all, you damn well love until your heart bleeds onto the floor. You never stop, you never give in, you always rise when you’re pushed to the ground and never, ever, let anyone take what you love from you. You fight them until you have no fight left and always, above all, live!”

Simon could see the emotion stir within the crowd, his own thoughts and feelings overcoming him. He stood tall, he felt the tears rise, the emotion overcome him, but he did not let them escape. This was a proud moment, a noble moment, albeit a moment of a fool’s errand. Simon turned to Bruce, hugged him, but couldn't bring himself to look at his face. He was leaving behind his best friend, his friends, for a purpose that still seemed vacant to him.

The craft hummed into life, the engines ready to reach the velocity that would tear through the air at an incredible speed. He wasn't ready, he never would be, but this was where he simply accepted the situation that he brought upon himself. Simon pressed the button and the view in front of him changed to canyons and rock. The next 45 seconds would be his last, within this craft, and then he had but moments before it all ended.

The craft hit the ground and skidded for over a mile, nearly to the heart of the enemy’s encampment. His brief was a simple one. Reach the very middle and complete the mission. The craft’s canopy split away, ejecting him onto his feet, to which he started to run as fast as he could. Augmented, improved, he should be able to keep ahead of them. Within seconds they were upon him, aware, agile, but thankfully that small second slower. Simon reached to his sides, grasping the two side-arms. Releasing them from their holsters, he brought them forward and fired at anyone, or anything, that would stop him. He watched as blood flew into the air, almost in slow motion, as his perception filtered the oncoming threats. He ran in a side to side motion, just in case of rear assailants, albeit unlikely.

The seconds moved away as he neared the middle of their land. Breathing heavily, cold lungs threatening to stop him, he started to regulate his breathing in order to calm himself. His optical enhancements signalled the very middle and, stopping, he removed two tripods from either side of his legs. Quickly, expertly, he placed a gun upon each tripod and changed the mode to sentry. Immediately the guns started to fire as the enemy charged his position. He had seconds before the sheer amount of numbers overwhelmed the guns, as well as him.

He reached back, removing the satchel, unzipping and then removing the contents. A simple square type object, nothing special, hardly deadly, but Simon knew what it could do. Twisting it around, the warning sticker facing upwards, he stood, looking into the eyes of the closest combatant to him. Simon smiled. Inside he felt the calm. Emotions sedated, flashes, images, throwing themselves into his mind, he recalled moments of his life. He desired so much, wanted so little from life, but it was okay. He felt nothing as the cold end seemingly circled, embracing his mind and last moments. He pressed the object to his chest and, upon detecting him, four metal spikes shot into his body. His lungs perforated, the spikes appearing through his back, Simon fell to his knees as, finally, they broke through. He closed his eyes, the pain almost unbearable, as his last thoughts were that he simply did not wish to die.

The energy welled within his body, as they scratched at his flesh, until the wave reached its peak and exploded. The shock wave reaching over 20 miles, destroying everything in its path. His life, his single, solitary, existence, gone within the brief moments of pain and agony. His sacrifice, his singular moment, ensuring that so many others lived another day.


Saturday, 1 December 2018

30,000

Today has been a very good day (so far).


Small victories come in all shapes and sizes.




I've always wanted to write, despite the ups and downs of people wondering why, but it's nice to know that people can create and continue to do so. I was asked a very odd question, yesterday, which confused me for awhile, "Do you even know who you are?"  I've never actually asked myself that question. Have you?  I couldn't honestly answer. Maybe it's time to discover the answer to that question, dig deep, discover and enjoy.  After all, the closest you'll ever get to me is, probably, via my written words.




Here's to the next 10,000 views.

Thank you. Thank you from my heart.

Friday, 30 November 2018

Kiss

I know, I know, you don’t need to tell me that I'm being that way again. It might sound idiotic, even puerile, but this is simply the way I am. Call me a fool for dreaming, state that I'm not living in the real world, or even laugh and walk away but it still won’t change my mind.


I'm an optimist, a seemingly positive person, battling against a hidden world filled with less than appropriate thoughts, despite having some of the same said feelings just like you. I say too little, at times, I write too much, often, but that’s me and each day I'm learning. But no matter what you say to me, whatever you do to me, throw at me, I'm still going to cherish certain moments in life.

Some dream of the big prize, the lottery win, the expensive cars and the luxury all expenses paid holidays. Been mostly there, done some of that, with none of it making me happy. Some simply dream of waking, each morning, with a smile on their face despite the intensely lonely feelings they’re feeling. Also been there, done that, sold the T-shirts and arrived back to smiling. Some dream of escaping their lives, being somewhere else… anywhere else, other than where they currently reside. It’s okay, it’s understood, it’s part of the day to day lives that we’re inhabiting.

For me, however, it’s very, very simple. I have the personality to become whatever I choose. Within reason. I will drag myself, or run, to destination B, or A, at the drop of a hat. To me travelling to another country is the same as getting on a bus to travel 6 miles. People are people, bricks are bricks, no matter the adventure of moments. I'm not knocking those things, as I adore them, love them, but that’s not how I tick.

I'm learning, each day, to adapt to my own personality. It’s currently being shaped, to a degree, to allow more freedom. It’s all an adventure. It’s exciting, it’s adapting me to a new way of thinking. We exercise our muscles, we release the knots within our frame, relaxing and indulging when we manage to make the time to fit ourselves in. When a car breaks we seek a mechanic which, when you think about it, is the same for our minds.

But, as usual, I'm rambling. Back on topic.

For me, the simplest most beautiful thing is one of the most important moments of my life. There’s been a couple, only a few, as I'm innocent! (Yeah, okay) The first kiss. Stop laughing. Romance is dead. No, it isn't. It’s alive within all of us, no matter how small, it’s there. If I really like someone, which doesn't take me long to decide, it’s the only thing I can think of. I don’t care if we've thrown clothes around a room, done all of those ‘things’ that we do, it still comes back to that. It’s the first physical connection that states how you feel about someone. Hugs are hugs, which are great, but that first kiss. Magical. Legendary. On fleek? (Did I just write that!? I feel ill)

Stop laughing. Maybe, as a child, I watched far too many black and white films. Maybe our perception, or yours, is filtered by the constant ease of a new person just around the corner. It’s not often that I honestly, really, REALLY, like someone. No idea why, but thankfully, I'm now learning to understand, ‘who I am’.


To conclude my mini rant that might make no sense:

Yeah, all true, I idolise the first kiss. It switches on, or off, my connection to a person. I'm not thinking about what you’re wearing (ish), or what the next ten years will be like, as that singular moment is the one that I want to repeat forever. Kissing is important. It’s vital. It’s the difference between making love and… the other stuff. Intentions are revealed within kisses.

Now… don’t even mention eyes… or hair. OMG hair!

Stop laughing.

--------------------


That singular moment. You know the one, that second, where your breathing intensifies, the butterflies fly, and your nerves start to invade your mind and feelings. We've all been there, ashamedly so, more than once. Some dream of it, some desire it, while others cannot wait for it to happen.

I don’t care what emotions are released, whatever invading chemicals decide to attack my consciousness, as it’s what I desire so much. I have dreamed of such things, thought of such moments for days, whilst wondering if it’ll ever happen.

I know we've spoken, for a long time, maybe even more than that, despite it being a few days amongst the rabble of social networking, but today is not the same day, fifty years previous. Far too fast, far too soon, readily available at every second, entire relationships created, lived, then ended, on-line. It’s a reality that we’re now used to. So many miss-understandings. But, saying that, I still believe in the simple things.

You’re actually here, next to me, in person, speaking with ease and I cannot deny that all I've thought about is kissing you. It’s not a big deal, it’s simply a moment, which is everything to me. I know, I do know, that I'm a contradiction in many ways. I say one thing while feeling another. I'm relaxed while jumbled inside. I'm thinking yet drifting away in your eyes.

Romance is not dead. She’s in front of me, right now, breathing and looking at me creating a desire that’s hard to bear when there’s distance between us. I just want to lean forward, place my arms around you, embrace, then have you upon my lips. It’s not difficult, it’s not a stretch of the imagination, but realistic and real.

I have to look at you, while imagining your lips upon mine. I know that this is all tame, maybe even silly to many people, but there is purity in the world. My mind may concoct such elaborate and filthy moments, erotic, deep stories and moments to make anyone blush, but the heart is a completely different story. I said that I was innocent. I didn't lie. I just left out the part of ‘where’ I'm innocent. I don’t care what I do to you, but I do care how I feel about you. There’s a world of difference and when combined together… .

That first kiss. It tells me everything I need to know. My intentions, my thoughts, the way I feel and how I’m to proceed. I want everything, I want to give everything, but only when it’s right. Kiss me a thousand times and it’ll be just the same as that first moment. I don’t want to hear the words, (I do really), the affection intention, with kisses, instead, meaning the world to me. I'm a person with base requirements in the world. Self-sufficient, able to stand on my own two feet, which means that all I ask is that you bring me to my knees with your lips (ahem).

So, right now, you’re there, you’re here, smiling, speaking, un-aware of my intentions. That’s okay, that’s fine. I’ll keep dreaming, I’ll keep wondering what you’re like, despite the talk of the bedroom, I'm not there yet. I'm still over here, dreaming, thinking, of that first kiss.

--------------------

Both written awhile back. Different time, different perspective, both reasonably valid to this day (But maybe no longer. Time will tell).

Saturday, 24 November 2018

Split


David opened his eyes, barely, as his head reminded him of the fall. It had been days, maybe more, as he struggled to focus. Slowly, eventually, he looked at the five people gathered around the bed. Looking at each of them, trying to recognise a face that he knew, his mind returned him to the present and he immediately asked for a phone. Any phone. Eager, recalling the moments of the last few days, he just wished to hear their voices again.


Dialling the number, he knew off by heart with his fingers shaking, the tears fell as the mobile started to ring on the other side. Pressed firmly against his ear, unable to stop his emotions over taking all thoughts of the people in front of him, the phone call was answered, and he heard his Daughter’s voice. He could hardly speak, barely even hold the phone to his ear, as his Daughter’s voice was replaced by another. His wife. “Who is this,” she asked with concern as she heard his distress, “Do you need help?”
“I'm okay baby, I'm Okay. I thought that I’d never hear your voice again!”
“Who is this?” she asked, confused, not recalling the caller’s voice.
“It’s me, David!”
“I'm hanging up now.”
The call dropped, leaving David confused, distraught, with the tears stopping with the shock of what had just taken place. His thoughts echoed through his mind, onto his dishevelled face, wondering what on earth was happening.


David returned the phone to the owner as the five-hospital staff, in front of him, looked at each other in confusion. Not quite sure how they’d managed to be standing in a room, with a stranger, seemingly woken from a coma. The six of them wondering what to do next.


Two days previous.

David stepped over a small earth patch, bounding up the side of a larger rock, to look out across the canyon. A spectacle to be adored, remembered, as well as the fresh air filling his lungs with energy. He didn't often manage to do this, since being married, having a child, but that didn't matter to him as he had beauty to look forward to no matter where he was. Life wasn't always easy, sometimes difficult, but with the two of them by his side, he always managed to get to where they were heading. Problems resolved, issues dealt with, keeping all of them moving.

Ideally, he’d like them all to travel to these places, with him, but the small amount of gym time that Emma threw into the week was enough for her. Maybe when older the small one would venture to go with him, but as he knew, time waited for no-one. Still, no matter the circumstance, he had to get out there when he could, even if it meant being on his own.

Stepping down from the rock, quickly dashing slightly to the side as the incline appeared, he swiftly danced through the many stones with ease. Still agile, still able to do this, he smiled to himself and enjoyed the beat of his heart racing. The day was beautiful, the day was a day of days, amongst the hustle and bustle of the city.  He could see his end point, the tip top of the small mountain, never seen by his eyes, but walked and adored by many others.

As he stepped over a small part of mountain foliage, he caught sight of a small gorge to his side, with possibly a sensible place to eat some food and to take pictures. He wasn't one to always stay on the path, enjoying the nooks, the hidden places, the less than safe locations calling him. He’d climbed before, jumped from planes, nearly died a few times, but that was what life was about. Living. Being. Feeling as much as possible. He quickly reminded himself of his responsibilities, the loved ones at home, which halted his optimism. But only by a small amount.

Stepping from the worn path, he jumped over a branch, then scrambled down the side of an earthy section of the mountain. The temperature changed, after a few seconds, reminding him that there would be water somewhere around here. He loved water falls. He enjoyed swimming, so anything other than a dry path was okay with him. As he neared another small ledge, looking over, he could see a small drop, not that bad, with his eagerness being his undoing. As he took one more step forward the ledge crumbled, taking him by surprise. He fell.

Shaking his head, at the bottom of wherever he’d landed, he felt the pain from various parts of his body. His eyes, firmly closed, as he breathed through the pain and stabbing sensations. He gritted his teeth, begging, asking, for the pain to stop. Lifting a hand, touching his side, another area of pain appeared. His rib, or ribs, probably broken. As he opened his eyes, trying to move ever so slightly, his view turned black and he passed out.

Once again, his eyes opening, noticing that the light had faded ever so slightly. He realised that he must have been there for more than a few hours. The pain, still surrounding him, echoing through him, not willing to stop just yet. He reached into his side pocket, with the pain refusing to let him do much more, he removed his phone and pressed the on button. The cracks, all the way across the screen, completely broken. Even if the phone worked, he usually kept the device deactivated with flight mode.

Slowly, placing his head onto the ground as he dropped the phone next to him, his mind turned to survival. He was six miles away from his car, with fifteen miles between the nearest possible person or safety. David ignored the pain, lifting his back from the ground, which wasn’t going to happen as the agony felt like a knife to his body. He coughed a few times. Blood appearing around his mouth.

His thoughts infected him, started to destroy him, as he knew that he couldn’t possibly crawl the six miles back to his car. He didn’t want his life to end like this. He couldn’t. He wouldn’t permit his existence to be ended by such a worthless moment in his entire life. His daughter’s face appeared within his mind, his wife’s face, his entire family greeting him in his moment of need. He wanted to smile, for some odd reason, but only for the briefest second as their faces faded and the dark night sky greeted him.

He felt his heart slowing, the pace of life asking him to let go. He didn't want to go. He wanted to stay, with them, for them, to feel his warm arms around the both of them. He’d chased her, his wife, for such a long time. Adored her when she barely even knew his name. Each time she’d smile, he’d feel a part of him push him, ask him, beg him, to say something. He didn't even remember why he was so shy around her. He definitely wasn't himself, he knew that for sure, but that’s what a man becomes when he knows that the woman in front of him, is his everything.

He could feel the tears appear again, using the last of his vital energy. He remembered the first moment they’d kissed. Timeless, even silly, but that moment meant that they’d create a baby girl. His girl. His daughter. Another tear appeared, not long to go, as his heart slowed to a crawl. One more beat, just a few more moments of life, holding on, keeping their faces as close to his heart and eyes as he could manage. He started to mumble a few words, a few times, until he could find the breath for his own ears to hear, “Not like this!”

Closing his eyes, asking the impossible from his heart, he quickened the thoughts within his mind. His mouth fell open, his lungs slowly filling with air, until he’d managed to gain enough strength. One last moment, one momentary second, as he screamed as loud as he could. His mind, jolted by the scream, grasped at any scraps of energy and in the next second, his body fell motionless as he died.


The Ward manager stood in front of David, while the Policeman finished a phone call. Standing across from the three of them, stood David’s wife and Daughter. The commotion outside of the room, with many faces looking at David, bustled away to avoid a disturbance. “I've never seen this man before in my life?” Stated David’s wife, with her daughter, beside her, staring at David.
“I understand that this is all very confusing, but we will get to the bottom of this!” stated the Officer.
The ward manager, stood over David, looked at the others in the room, “This man has been in a coma for months.” 


David rested, not quite understanding what was happening, he watched as the Officer’s face turned white. Leaning forward slightly, while lowering his voice, he explained to David that his body had been found. David, mind spinning, confused to a level that he’d never known in his life, lifted himself slightly as the Ward manager adjusted his pillows. He didn't want to say too much. In fact all he wanted to do was hug his wife and child.

As they all left the room, David looked out of the window, not sure what to do next. As quickly as the door closed, it opened again and in walked a new person. “Hello, my name is Samuel. How are you?”
No matter the situation, or person, despite learning that he’d actually died, David always wanted to be polite, even if he just wanted to be silent.
“I've been better.”
“Yes, I've heard what happened. Not one of the five hospital staff know why they appeared in this room at the same time. Would you know anything about that?”
“The last thing I remember, before waking here, was thinking about my family.”



Samuel had heard of situations such as this, the moments where a tragic incident increased a person’s strength, their perception of events, or giving them heightened senses. This, however, was a new trick. “Have you ever heard of astral projection?” Asked Samuel, as David shook his head slowly side to side still in a daze. “In your last moments, your energy escaped your body. Call it grief, despair, maybe even love, but you simply did not want to leave them behind. My best guess would be that your energy split into five parts, all managing to travel the distance, ending with your consciousness, mind, soul, call it whatever you want, landing into the heads of five hospital staff.”

Samuel surmised that one mind could not rest within the same space as another but didn't want to continue saying too much. “Your family will be fine, David, but you know that you cannot see them again!” David looked at Samuel, his thoughts trying to find a solution, but failing as he realised that he was, literally, in another body. He was trapped, but alive. “You can help them by letting us study you, monitor you, if that would be acceptable?”  David nodded, wanting to escape the entire situation, whilst realising that time was what he needed. Time to adjust, time to consider what had happened, as well as space to come to terms with everything.

Samuel smiled, “There’s a storm coming David, which you might be able to help us with. I'm a member of a unique group of people that all work and study people like yourself. Welcome to Quarantine!”


Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Wings


With the weight of the world, upon her weary shoulders, she carried on walking forward. Solemn, lost, her desecrated vessel crying for solace and a serene haven to save her sorrowful soul. She was broken, stripped of her strength, unable to continue in the world where she existed as a flickering, baseless, roaming flame. She’d scream, she’d open her lungs to allow the saving air into her body, but that, that very saviour, was not for her.


Falling from heaven, stepping from safety into the unknown, she was the wide-eyed innocent soul that adored adventure. She’d fought harder than any other individual she knew, the spirited wanderer that rode into the wind as fast as possible. No fear, no reservations, the ideals and issues of others being nothing to her. She did feel, she knew that she did, but to allow such moments were the true signs of weakness. Above all, especially to peers, she excelled at every task that she saw fit to fashion into her life. She, alone, singular, could never enrage a travesty within her life. Planned, focused, even when the next day featured nothing but thoughts, it was a day of planned notions.

Then, on that day, she decided to escape the safety of her nobility. Falling, cascading, enveloping a new life of wonder and decadence. At first, she strived, broke new ground, survived with ease, looking to the stars, the heavens, to remind her of where she had escaped from. The warmth of the stars, the beauty of the moon, the ideals of her heart, all ensuring that she survived.

The years moved through her life, washing over her, tainting her, introducing her to the life of a normal being. Troubled, full of anxiety, the struggle of holding everything together, she anchored herself to the world with children. Her heart sang, her soul full of joy, the small hands of fate holding to her like three strong hearts occupying the same space. She glowed, she excelled, she decided to undertake a task so very delicate that even the Gods would turn their back on such a moment.

She cut her wings. Removed them. Wrenched them from her back with a vengeful motivation that defied all prayers and purpose. She was a Mother, she was the modern-day Viking that would never, ever, allow any soul, being or moment to command any part of her life. She stood, proud, holding onto one of her long-forgotten wings, bloodied, damaged beyond reprieve. Stubborn, majestic, the freedom bestowed upon her, liberating.

Her life continued, her heart breaking, lost within the world, at moments of great sadness and grief. The two small hearts grew, cultivated by her strength and desire for a better life. They knew, they really knew, that the heart that looked over them, would end before anything happened. The endless emotion of the one that loved. Hidden, until needed. Shrouded, until given.

She outlived them all. Her heart breaking again and again, the fallen Angel, the moments of her past lives haunting her, hurting her soul, chipping away at her very core and life. Each step, now heavy, another moment of loss within her soul. She looked to the heavens, crying, pleading, asking for respite, knowing that the answer would never arrive. Cast aside, forgotten, heralded as the one that would bring dishonour to the higher levels. Her anguish, pouring from within her eyes, she screamed using every second of power within her body. It pierced the sky, cracked through the clouds, moved through the void and finally arrived to heaven.

They looked upon her, despondent, seeing their Sister fall to such a level and place. They wanted to help, they would help, but she had lived the life of the Fallen. The gift bestowed freely given away. She wanted to scream again, to truly let them feel her wrath, but that simply wouldn’t do. It was not the fact that she had destroyed her wings, as she’d flown so many times without them. It was not the moments that she missed, when flying through the same clouds she now looked upon. It was the shear pain and agony of life. Each person, every single person, wished for wings to take them to another place, another moment, but instead, we were all destined to walk upon the Earth without them. She damned all of them, above, she cursed each of their names, as not one told her of the struggle. The struggle of being a Mother. The one that felt her heart break a thousand times yet, still ensuring it all stayed hidden behind a smile. For such beings, for such mortals, there was no such thing as... ‘wings’.


Monday, 19 November 2018

Hocus

Taz poured the gooey substance into the pot, humming away to her favourite song, blasting in the background. She loved this, adored this, the magic of the world at her fingertips. “Bubble, toil, pudding and…” she said to no-one, stopping due to loving pudding so much. She was in love, she couldn't deny it, while others would have called it puppy love or the ideals of a dreamer.


Although young, still so very, very innocent to the ways of the wicked world, she simply liked what she liked and that was that. He wasn't in the big boy group. He didn't have the fancy hair or play a lot of football, but what he did have was a smile that melted her heart. He was, to her, the eye within the newt.  Pulling a face at her thoughts, she quickly returned to pouring various odd objects into the cauldron. Her parents did think it odd when she’d asked for such a thing, a few years previously, but they were more than happy to simply let Taz do her thing.

As a puff of smoky mist moved across her face, she recalled how she’d found the book, the most amazing and articulate book that she’d ever read in her life. It belonged, or so it said at the start, to her great, great, great, great, super great, amazingly great, grandmother. Of course, it need not be said, that her ‘ggggsgag’ grandmother was probably thrown onto a fire, which was what happened to witches back then. Maybe, just maybe, she was a white witch, doing the good deeds back all those years previous. Taz, at least hoped so.

The dried rose petals, a small amount of charred stick, obviously crushed, with a small section of red parchment paper, all dropped into the small cauldron.  She stirred for a while, thinking, day dreaming, wishing and wondering what the first kiss would be like. She’d imagine it to be very soft, a beautiful moment etched in time, while the depth of that kiss would close her eyes and create love for all around. Opening her eyes at the thought, she quickly pushed them aside, as she wanted love for herself. Anyone else could go and find their own.

Finally ready, pouring the liquid into a strainer, she continued to crush the contents that remained before whisking them into the usual lemonade that everyone seemed to enjoy. Ready, excited, nearly jumping for joy, she checked the frail old book one more time to ensure that she could recite the words perfectly. She was ready,

“Brilliant Moon, At this hour
I call upon your magic power
Give me the love I seek
As I will it so mote it be”

One single bubble appeared at the top of the liquid, informing her, telling her, that she was ready and now was the time. One last try. She’d spoken to him, on a few occasions, her shy silence ending the conversation before it had even started. She’d changed her hair, dressed differently, which is something that she didn't really want to do unless she also liked the changes. She would be brave, she would endure, she would conquer and continue no matter what happened. Today was a day of days.

A few hours later, just after gym class, Taz stood just down the hallway from the main lockers. He’d be here, soon, as he would have just finished football. He always looked so alive after football, his gleaming smile making her feel so happy and serene. Maybe she wouldn't need the potion at all, maybe she should just tell him, speak with him, get the thoughts out of her heart and mind, and be done with them. She knew that true love came from the heart, through words as well as deeds, the notions of the world’s motion bringing people together. Yes, that was the right way, which is what she would do.

Just then, as she decided, he walked around the corner heading towards his locker. He was alone, thankfully, so now was the time and she would be brave. Each step, quicker than the last, moved her towards him. He, once again, looked so cute and she adored him. That bit closer, nearly there, her smile growing and heart beating as the final step brought her right next to him. “Hello,” she said with no fear within her voice, “Did you have a good practise today?” Ray, startled by Taz appearing next to him, jumped a little before returning a smile,
“I did Taz, I did. I've been meaning to speak to you, actually!”
“You have?”
“Yeah. I know it might be forward, but I’d like you to come to the dance with me?  I know, I know, I’m nothing special and each time I've tried to talk to you, you've gone all silent, but a Boy has to try?”
Taz could have fallen over, screamed, giggled for ten minutes or simply jumped up and down, but instead, she simply replied, “I would love to go to the dance with you!”
“Great. I'm so happy. Thank you. See you Friday at 7pm? I have to go now as it’s Geog!”

Taz watched as he backed away, smiling, the joy within her reaching new levels. She looked at the potion, “I guess I won’t be needing this any more!”
“Ah thanks!” Said Dave, grabbing the drink and throwing it down his throat as fast as possible. He stood in front of Taz, burped in her face, stepped back and then…
“Taz… why have I never noticed you before? You’re so beautiful!”

Taz stepped away, turned, then walked as fast as she could while muttering, “No, no, no, no. no…”