Reasons for Jumping

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
One man is about to jump off a roof when another comes along to join him.. what would you talk about?

Submitted: October 12, 2011

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Submitted: October 12, 2011

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The clouds drifted languidly across the sky, and somewhere else in the city people would be looking up at those clouds to make out rabbits and dragons and terracotta warriors, but Jonathon wasn't looking up right now. He was looking down and it seemed a long way. He swayed a moment and then gingerly bent down, gripped the waterproofed concrete and sat down, his legs dangling above the street where noone had noticed his existence. But then, who would even care?

'How can anyone jump?' he thought to himself, 'my legs feel like electric eels'

Still, the thoughts didn't take away the darkness and pain and tremendous sense of emptiness in his heart. Nothing could. He closed his eyes a moment and took a deep breath, listening to the sounds all around. Traffic mostly. Horns of angry people living angry lives. Why did they bother? There was some music playing somewhere, was that Barry Manilow? Must be a sign I'm doing the right thing.

"Hello mate!" came a voice, and Jonathon almost tumbled to the tarmac there and then. His heart felt like it had just been jump started like an old engine. "Mind if I join you?"

Jonathon turned around and there was a shadowed figure blocking the sun behind him. A tall skinny fella with graying hair and wearing a rumpled suit.  The man seemed to realise he was darkness between the sun and so stepped aside, blinding Jonathon for a moment but then the man slumped down next to him and sighed. That was a sigh begging for a question. Jonathon really wasn't in the mood for this.

"Actually, I kinda wanted to be alone." he quivered and realised that just came out in a pathetic squeak. What would the man think of him? Why do I even care?

"Yeah, I know the feeling." the man said, looking down between his own feet to the mess of traffic below, "Since my missus died I really don't feel like talking to anyone, Not my family and friends at least. they just all look at me like..."

"Like your pain is uncomfortable for them rather than you" Jonathon finished.

"Yeah." the man said, and brightened up, or as much as someone contemplating a 32 story faceplant could. "Your missus died?"

Jonathon was taken aback, it wasn't a question he got fronted with too often.

"Sorry, if that's too much to ask, but I figure, you're here thinking the same as me i guess" the stranger offered with a tilt of his head towards street.

"Uhm.. ah, well not exactly." Jonathon replied, ashamed as usual at his own stammering, "We lost our little boy a couple of years ago, and things weren't too good with us after that. She blamed me I suppose. Now she's gone, took everything, and I lost my job a few weeks ago. All my friends seemed to side with her, so I kinda lost them too"

"Shit, sorry about all that." the man said, shoulder slumping and eyes avoiding, "I guess you've got it bad. I mean, I still got my job, even if it's a struggle. Never did want kids..."

The last statement trailed away as if it had just killed the conversation and the statement knew it.

Barry Manilow was now Jonathon was sure he heard 'Sittin on top of the World' playing, Ray Charles maybe, or some other version. He almost giggled. The other guy did.

"Hell man," the other man said with a puff, "Is this really the way to do it? I mean, damn, that's a long fall."

They both leaned forward a little and checked out the view. Vertical.

"What else?" Jonathon replied, "I never liked guns, don't think I could hang myself and drugs, well you just might wake up a ward."

"At least..." the man thought for a moment, then laughed, a desperate kind of laugh, ".. go out with a bang. Pool all our money together, go out on the booze, get some drinks and some girls and some blow and carry on till the night takes us out."

"Sounds like an idea" Jonathon lied, he wasn't that kind of person , "But I couldn't contribute to a shot glass, let alone a pool of monet. I got nothing left."

"Really? Nothing"

"nothing"

"House?"

"She got the house"

"Car?"

"sold that about three months ago"

"savings?"

"been out of work a while, living gets expensive."

"you gotta have some possesions?"

"nah mate, you take every old stich of clothing and my old shitty computer and everything else in my old shitty apartment and you might get 100 bucks. if you can be bothered trying to sell it tall in the first place." Jonathon breathed deeply at the end of it all and looked down at the street once more. The building's shadow was creeping across so that it  split the road in two. Who the hell is this guuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuy

Tony stood up as he watched Jonathon Monaghan tumble and scream towards the concrete, then took a step back so noone would look up and see a figure, that would just cause too many questions for the police. Reaching into his pocket he took out his phone and pressed speed dial 1.

"Yeah boss, it's me.....no, he had nothing. I'm sure... really sure.....anyway, the jobs done. Another scratching..... no problem. Anything else you need from me today?"


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