Two Lights

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
This story is about a man who stares at death every night and finally realizes it is his time to move on.

Submitted: February 19, 2014

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Submitted: February 19, 2014

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Every night I stand in front of the same door. Its white steel frame, window placed on the top half, covered by a thin plastic screen that has fallen apart from years of work. The carpet beneath my feet feels warm and soft. To my right is a plain white cabinet and my left is my wonderful computer on a huge, brown mahogany desk. The glow from the computer screens light up the chalky walls. I can still smell tonight’s dinner, pizza. But only a plate is left, with a few pieces of mushrooms and black olives left over.

I continue to stare out the window; the hum of my computer keeps me company. It is dark outside, the only thing visible are the two lights that are placed on the shop across the driveway. For a whole hour I stare at these lights, not knowing what I’m looking for. At the end of the hour, my shins ache, my head whirling of sleepiness. Nothing ever happens.

The next night the scene is the same, I’m alone with my computer again; staring outside at the two lights that seem to haunt me, there eerie glow staring back at me. I wish they were stars, but they are not. Stars fill me with hope and love for this world and the world beyond. But these two lights only leave me with loneliness and despair and I don’t know why.

I keep up to my nightly routine, nothing ever changing. The plastic screen cover only being kept up by years old tape, holes lie at the bottom, only showing darkness of the outside patio. But as always the same two lights are there, laughing at me, staring back into deepest parts of my soul. I can’t shake the feeling that I’m being watched closely, like being hunted by a lion.

A loud crackling noise shoots off behind me, the furnace steams to life. My heart starts to race, but comes back down slowly, like after crossing the finish line. I turn my gaze back out the window. My two enemies are gone, no longer peering through the curtained window. Everything is dark; no light mocks me in my mundane repetitiveness. However I still see light, conforming around a strange figure. A hand slowly appears and is placed in the center of the window.

The hand was there, real, caporal. My eyes must have turned against me, fear washed over my body. I was frozen, iced formed around my heart, brain freeze set in. The hand never moved, not a flinch or a flicker. I slowly moved towards the door.

One step at a time, don’t be afraid, it’s probably just a homeless man, who is twenty miles outside of town, there isn’t anything he can do. The hand didn’t move. Another step. My heart pounded at my chest, wanting to escape from this nightmare and hide in a better place. Another step. Sweat dripped down my forehead, my hair itched. Another step. My legs hurt, my eyes strained from lack of sleep, my mind in the same midnight daze. Another step. The hand still placed on the window.

As I reach the door I violently ripped the sheet down, crumpling years of hard work to cover the window. But before my eyes were the same two lights, now I could visibly see the shop, the driveway, my dad’s trucks but no man. The only trace of its existence was the outline of a hand that had been placed on the glass.

I bring up my hand and position it on top of the hand imprint. An exact match. I look up and there he was, the man I had just saw, lonely and tired. His brown curly hair started turning grey; his brown eyes were black in the night. A bushy beard framed a wrinkling melancholy face. I stare into his eyes and see a husk of man that used to be filled with life, I see right through him. Death now grips his shoulder, beckoning him to come. The two lights, mounted on the shop walls, become eyes on a face. The face of death. I open the door and walk towards the lights.

 


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