Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop my 7th post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24 to 31st, 2013

Check out COFFIN HOP: DEATH BY DRIVE-IN, profits will be donated to LitWorld.org to help encourage children’s literacy throughout the world.

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of the characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. I’ll announce the winner November 1st.

Hop hearty. Visit all the sites. Aspen

______________________________________________________________________________________

I Joined the Zombie Walks

I heard about Zombie Walks just after my 13th birthday. I loved the concept. Somehow, that freedom to be unclean in public spoke to me.

Took me ’till my 15th before the parents allowed me to join. Course, that was a local event. Within the arbitrary distance circle they set.

“Let her go, John,” my mother pleaded, attempting to convince my father. “How often can she be part of any crowd?”

Father sighed, momentarily flicking a look up from his workday screen. “Fine. Remember to take your wraps with you. Be home before sunrise.”

Overjoyed, I napped that afternoon, figuring it to be the only way I’d stay awake all night.

I hopped a subway, trying to stay in the few shadows there. Nobody gave me a startled look for a change. I caught a few fellow riders glancing at me to above me and smile. I scanned the ads above. I’d stationed myself right under the Zombie Walk poster. I could have been the poster child.

Didn’t take long to find the crowd. Milling around just off the main drag, about a hundred costumed Zombies waited. More arrived every minute.

I saw tatters and rags, oozing sores, teeth blackened, missing fingers. All manner of makeup portraying the horrors of Zombie virus disabilities.

I knew I’d fit right in. From my place in the shadows, I unwrapped from my hoodie, pulled off my gloves, and opened my shirt. Confidently I joined the growing numbers.

I met people, became friends with strangers for the first time in my life. Me, deformed me, accepted for the first time in my life. They didn’t turn away in disgust.

“Cool makeup,” one kid gushed, touching a weeping sore on my chin. “What’d you use?” He tasted my ooze. “Yech. Whatever it is, don’t tell me. I like mine sweet. You should check out the makeup at the 47th Street store. For next year, I mean.”

I nodded. “I’ll check it out.”

I mingled, laughing at jokes I didn’t understand, enjoying the party atmosphere.

Several cliques practiced walks, teaching anyone interested. Sure, that staggered scramble, the unbalanced lurch hurt my hips. But I learned it, perfected it before we started the Walk.

I was hooked! Me, the ungodly, the shunned, the unseen. I reveled in this freedom where nobody spit at me, ordered me away. Where no one took offense from my appearance.

I told all my online friends, my fellow home-schooled, about this freedom, this acceptance. We all made a pact to join in whenever a Zombie Walk came near our homes. I’d never met them before. See, congregation is frowned by our society in this new world. Fraternization is dangerous as it announces our presence at the outskirts of their society.

By the time I’d turned 19, I’d entered every Walk within evening driving distance. My makeup garnered compliments not scorn. Missing fingertips didn’t faze these Walkers. I’d kissed and hugged dozens of people. I shared drinks, and straws, licked shared suckers. Lost my virginity in some dirty alley just this year. Not something I confessed to the parents, I assure you.

Me, the unholy, the despicable, society’s refuse. I belonged.

Home again, in Father’s preferred dim lighting, I overheard a hushed conversation.

“WHO’s mentioning an virus upswing here in North America. Among the young adults. Standard medicines aren’t working. Causing a bit of panic.” Father’s worried comment. I heard him rise, the bathroom medicine cabinet open and pills bottles shaken.

“Jo, you make sure you take those pills every night.”

“Sure Dad. I take ’em.” I assured him, not telling him I’d been flushing every other month’s rather than ingesting them. My buddies-in-disease and I decided two years ago to play with those medications. How can we fit in with this disease-friendly crowd if we haven’t lost parts of us? Aren’t rife with sores?

I’m accepted at these Zombie Walks, just part of the crowd. No wide berth taken around me, no rejection, or scorn.

I fit in. No one looks twice at me anytime now. I’m just another weird Zombie Walker. Accepted by mainstream society. I can walk safely out in public.

So, this year we decided, my buddies and I, to connect with the biggest Zombie Walk of them all. We met up on the outskirts; high-fived and set off to join the crowds. We split up once we found them.

See, we, society’s refuse, we understand you now.

to be continued…

Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop my 6th post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24 to 31st, 2013

Check out COFFIN HOP: DEATH BY DRIVE-IN, profits will be donated to LitWorld.org to help encourage children’s literacy throughout the world.

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of the characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. I’ll announce the winner November 1st.

Hop hearty. Visit all the sites. Aspen

_____________________________________________________________________________________

The Graveyard Fence

I’ve been dead and buried for almost a year, decently laying in that quiet cold earth, contemplating my imagined sins and wondering if eternity began at the moment of my last breath, when my coffin transluced. The earth around me quivered. I heard murmurs of many-accented voices wakening all around me, gently discussing their options as Samhain neared.

Needless to say I poked my head up. Right through my coffin to the earth above.

Night didn’t look the same as I remembered it.

Yes, the sky had darkened. A full moon climbed the heavens, highlighting tree skeletons. That hadn’t changed.

In the distance I saw life forces, glowing green against the dark. That pulsing beckoned me, encouraged me to come close, to partake.

I found myself drifting above the land, across silvered tombstones, towards that something wafting its heady scent of life.

My progress halted. I looked down to find a harsh white line, hotter than any fire, preventing me from crossing. I followed the line for a bit, my attention still on the green incandescence that called me.

“Won’t do you any good, dearie,” a voice behind croaked.

I spun, hunting for a body to go with that ancient sound.

“Here,” a pearly hand waved from a marker. A head popped up, followed fast by a clothed, translucent body.

Before I even thought about it, I stood beside her.

“Mrs Anthony Todd, dearie. Didn’t see you last year. Just buried?”

Now I stood in a crowd of wavering thin shapes, all bobbing heads and talking at the same time.

“Celia Smith,” I introduced myself in a lull of others introducing themselves. “I thought I’d been buried. This place doesn’t look familiar. Where are we?”

Creepy smirks and smiles blossomed immediately. Hundreds of answers clamored for attention.

One came through clear. “You’re new in our graveyard honey. Welcome. Get used to it. This is your world now.”

“What holds us in?”

“The line,” another voice informed me.

“Isn’t that the fence? How can it hold us in? It isn’t tall. Wasn’t meant to hold anyone out.”

My mind whirled with memories from life. I’d picked this graveyard long ago. It looked warm and pleasant back then, lots of trees, bushes almost wild around some of the headstones, flowers in well maintained plots, and that little picket fence, painted white yearly, all around the edge.

“All hallowed graveyards have a wall, dearie,” Mrs Todd informed me. “Keeps us spirits bound. Surely your priest told you?”

When I informed them I didn’t have a priest, many of the more crystalline figures gasped.

“And why did I wake up now? Why are you all awake?”

“‘Tis All Saints Eve, dearie,” Mrs Todd spoke for many of the nodding heads. “This night to seek passage. To go ahead, up or down.”

“So, how do I do it? Go on, I mean?”

“Ya can’t,” a dry voice stated. “I member hearing ya have to follow the moon path. Can’t reach it from here.”

“Jist settle in, love,” a slimy male voice called from the back of the crowd. “Yer here with the rest of us now.”

I checked out the whole perimeter, that painful white line. I circled it twice. My bones trembled if I came too close.

The green pulses of life still called me. The moon overhead sent a river of beams, streaming, running, babbling invitation, stopping firm in front of the cold-iron barred gate.

I bent to examine this break in the line. Memories of a wrought iron scroll worked fancy replayed. I’d thought it wondrous in those days of freedom. Now its sullen warning I felt, like a burning torch ready to crisp my being if I ventured too near.

Still, I had to try. My flesh dripped, puddling  to the ground at the fastened gate.

A wizened old specter spoke at my elbow. “We’ve all tried love,” he moaned. Once, years ago, almost further back than I can remember, some fanatic priest spake words over that opening. Had the blacksmith fashion that gate. Bathed it in holy water to keep demons at bay. We ain’t never left since. Now we gather come Saints Eve, and the days surrounding, every year, and wonder if our souls will ever hear the Gabriel’s trumpet call.”

The defeat in his voice almost overwhelmed me. “I will not be trapped,” I declared. “I will find a way out.”

“You try love. We wish you no ill. Mayhap you’ll be the one.”

In the distance I heard young children’s laughter. Cars roared by. The wind played tag with the few leaves left. That all left a beat.

I listened all night to that song of life, testing my new boundaries over and over. I dropped back into the cool ground before dawn bathed the world, still pondering my prison, trying to come up with a plan.

That next night I circled again and again, wounding myself testing the limits. Though those other souls watched, never hindering, they sent me no well-wishes.

I heard life all around me as I pulled visions of past happenings up to the front. Didn’t teens come and visit graveyards on All Hallow’s Night?

I picked up the beat of the wind and the air. Tapped my foot, cleared my throat, such that i could.

And I sang of my quest to the world just beyond. Of my heartfelt desire to depart.

Some group must have heard me. Or they just happened to pass. For they paused, right before me, by the bounding.

One pierced ruffian kicked out at the gate. “Cheap trash,” he yelled as it fell over. Another kick and it sailed over a tombstone, landing on the headstone of old Mrs Todd.

They must have felt our rush to freedom. One young female screamed, another gagged as we pushed past, seeking our freedom.

Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop my 5th post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24 to 31st, 2013

Check out COFFIN HOP: DEATH BY DRIVE-IN, profits will be donated to LitWorld.org to help encourage children’s literacy throughout the world.

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of the characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. I’ll announce the winner November 1st.

Hop hearty. Visit all the sites. Aspen

______________________________________________________________________________________________

This little piece has seen the light of day. http://www.Browngod.com/ They published it in May 2012. Mine again in Nov 2012

Tweel’s Humour

I have a game I play whenever I get into the big city.  It takes a fair amount of bravery to play the first time.  The second time could start your addiction.

I thought maybe, just maybe, you’d like to play too.  It has two parts.

First, I just want you to just become familiar with all the faces going by.  You ready?  Here goes.

Pick a busy time of the day, when humanity is on the move, on a deadline, traversing from point A to point B in as few steps as possible.  Lunch time with its frantic beat to grab and meal and rest reveals the very best in humanity.  Though four-thirty work departure madhouse in gloaming grimy streets abounds with wary work-worn facile facades.

Now.

Stand right there!  No don’t take yourself out of the way.  Stand your ground in the middle of that busy, big city sidewalk.  Stand absolutely still.  Root yourself in the path of the mob, the humanity.  Watch those lemmings on lunch break, swimming with the current.  Stand against all the pressure the pressgang school exudes.

Now watch.  Stare straight ahead, eye level.  Make eye contact.

That’s the way!

And smile.  Not a big evil grin.  Not a smirk.  No. You need to send out your little smile of hello, of welcome, of a friendship that could be – if only.  Let your eyes enter into the scheme of that smile, that welcome, that freedom from workplace angst.

Force the crowd to part around you.  You are a rock in a stream and they are the water parting.  All the while you smile.

Relax into your most understanding stance.  Believe you know you have the right to stand here.  Throw your shoulders back, plant your feet firmly.  Extol that right in your smile.  In your demeanor.  Believe yourself strong, individual, important.

Keep that smile going!  100 watts is best.  Connect, give eye contact whenever possible.  That in itself will begin to show you their world of loneliness.  Watch the timid grins peek out from the miserable.  Welcome that.  You have brightened someone’s day.  All by yourself.  And just by smiling.

Every time someone returns that smile, with even just a hint of friendliness, pat yourself on the back.  Yes, a big pat!  Those strangers’ returned acknowledgement of your life’s sparkle speaks inside them, taking away, for a moment, their forced plodding through life.  Your little ray of sunshine made someone’s hour, someone’s day.  You’ve lent a piece of yourself to that absolute stranger; made yourself one with them for that nanosecond.  You are a gift in their otherwise dull existence.  And you didn’t even know them.

Once you are totally comfortable in your ability to make that difference.  Once you can see that mob as the individuals they are, you might want to take the next step.  You might want take a turn to experience life more fully.  You’ve given, now is time to take.

This second part of my game is harder.  For this part we thank Tweel and wonder at his state of mind, his humour.  Follow me if you dare.

Now you station yourself out of the way of the crowds, across the street, facing towards a sidewalk strip with many windows.  You want a nice long set of large, plate glass windows for your runway.  To see the truth behind your fellow beings.

Edge out, almost to the road.  Maybe wrap yourself around a sign post: you might need the support.  You need no humanity blocking your view of this extraordinary event.

Watch the humanity pass by in those windows.  Each pane of glass, appearing rolled to perfection when viewed with no reflections, is off just a little.  Doesn’t it seem that way?  Like the mirrors in a fun house.

Watch your passersby in those mirrors.

Play the game with me now.  ‘What will that one become?’ you must ask yourself each time as you take in their present, mobile, real form passing by.  The glass may be mirroring their true form.  Can you really tell?  Is the glass pure and the humanity warped?

Are you sure?

Mirrors are magic.  All the fairytales tell us so.  Or is that fiction?  Do you really know the answer?  Remember, before you answer that, fairy tales and old wives’ tales are the urban legends of yesteryear.  Each encapsulating is a grain of truth.

Notice that every person passing reflects differently than the person before?  But glass only reflects, right?  If the glass is imperfect, then shouldn’t each body change the same way?

Doesn’t happen does it?

Some bodies flatten into troll-like shapes.  Some elongate into an eleven form, long-bodied, long-limbed.  There are misshapen heads attached to strong bodies.  There are twisted bodies with regular heads.  Sometimes you see the beautiful, the almost ethereal, wisping by on their road to where?

Is humanity really that diverse?

If you watch very carefully, keeping that smile on your face at all times, you may be gifted.  You may see the unseen.  Some walkers cause sun-blinding moments as they pass.  Are they gods come down this day to check on humanity?

The windows do not reflect everything.  Did you notice that?  Did you notice how some people don’t reflect at all?  Not even a bright mote to show their passage.  Were they real?  Are they a ghost of some distance past, stuck on a treadmill time warp, or perhaps a time-traveler dropping in for a nanosecond to catch a glimpse of what was?

If you are brave enough, you could stand watching till dark. Do you know who comes out after dark?  Just keep watching.  Watch their reflections.

Who knows who you’ll see then?

_________

Author note: Mr Tweel invented the process of of forming plate glass.

Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop my 4th post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24 to 31st, 2013

Check out COFFIN HOP: DEATH BY DRIVE-IN, profits will be donated to LitWorld.org to help encourage children’s literacy throughout the world.

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of the characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. I’ll announce the winner November 1st.

Hop hearty. Visit all the sites. Aspen

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Learned Too Late

They never tell you. Those sweet talking hunks. Never explain.

Just come on hot and heavy. Donning passion like a high-class tailored suit. Strutting ’round, till we’re willing to do anything.

That’s right. Anything.

The bunch of them swarmed into our little city from the bright lights of Paris. Wined, dined and danced us off our feet.

Yeah, collectively. The whole gaggle of country beauties, past, present and in-waiting rodeo queens. What defense did us country bumpkins have against all that sexy old-world charm?

Not one of our home-boys shone like that.

SuzieJean, she went first. Spent the night in Nigel’s arms. No one saw her for a whole week. She appeared on his arm at Saturday night’s drop in. Made quite the entrance, tangoing cross the floor. Drop dead gorgeous. Lost some weight, dyed her hair. Almost didn’t recognize her, she transitioned so fine.

LilleyAnn, plump little thing. Hair like spun toffee. Pouty lips always kept our boys drooling. She danced with the lot of those European lads. Listened to their spun sugar lies, those promises of agelessness, youth and beauty. Not to mention shared riches.

Some svelte manny took her shopping before she returned. Latest fashions adorned her, highest styles head to toe. I couldn’t believe it. God she looked good.

BethieBob had her head turned the night after that. I don’t know what convinced her. What promise he offered. But she never looked back.

I couldn’t blame her. What would I trade for looking that way?

SallyKate and SueEllen too they joined in. Came back slinky, as if they’d been enchanted.

Gods I envied their luster and loving. Did I want? Could I live that way?

Yves, he sweet talked me, murmured words as he danced me close. Tiny treasures he gifted, rosebud poses, high class restaurants, fancy dinners, showed me off everywhere. Bantering love songs he whispered. The promises he made. Constantly urging acceptance of his forevermore endowment.

Oh, how I teetered at the abyss edge. Long tomorrows forever exchanged for grimy love hugs and certain death.

What can I say? I succumbed to that charm. Swept off my feet. Wanting long life. I could look in his eyes forever.

See, Yves, yes he bit me. And then I bit him, lapping change from the liquid within.

But within me, my chemistry objected. My genes fought his promise. Now I’m neither anymore. Not a human nor a vampire.

I stutter along at the wayside. Despicable body and soul. My home at lights out is where I find it; under bridges, skulked in alleys, nestled deep under refuse. I don’t care where I hide, not anymore.

All do shun me when they see me. Even hobos, street people and dogs. I don’t belong anywhere here on Earth.

I’m a ghoul now. A rotting, wretched thing. Just waiting for death.

And I think, while I’ve still got ability. There should be a disclaimer, terms of service, or a buyer beware. They’ll never tell you what does happen to the ones who can’t turn.

Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop my 3rd post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24 to 31st, 2013

Check out COFFIN HOP: DEATH BY DRIVE-IN, profits will be donated to LitWorld.org to help encourage children’s literacy throughout the world.

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of the characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. I’ll announce the winner November 1st.

Hop hearty. Lift a few lids. Visit all the sites. Aspen

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Rising

A barren, snow-swept landscape filled the horizon, cold beyond anything humans could endure.  Ice, frozen in millennium layers a mile thick, stood between the land and the sky.  And yet, almost invisible to the naked eye, a thin steamy sliver arose from this hellish landscape.  It wavered in the frozen atmosphere, almost solidifying in the cold, cold air.

Persisting, the sliver eased itself up through the ice-core bore-hole scientists drilled with cold-iron just the other week.  The deep bore hole shattered sigils, connecting to a long-ago created fissure; the one this being maintained in the hopes that someday, someway, it would find escape.

That lucky day, today, birthed the entrapped being back into a world no longer spelled against its kind; no longer educated with myths or set with charms to dispel; no longer training heroes to battle a menace intent on domineering a selection of victims to quell its own hunger and amusement.

It tasted the air, reveling in the faint pollution hinting of food close by, as it struggled to ease itself free of its prison.  It swayed, this way, wiggled that way, pulling itself free from the hole—that man-made escape hatch from a mage-designed prison.

It wriggled that last tiny iota, delightfully shivering as the last vestiges of its appendages solidified around it.

“Free!” it sang its exaltation to the empty skies.

It turned back to the escape route, a nimbus of willpower surrounding its form.  The borehole melted, collapsed.

It wanted no competition.

Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop my 2nd post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24 to 31st, 2013

Check out COFFIN HOP: DEATH BY DRIVE-IN, profits will be donated to LitWorld.org to help encourage children’s literacy throughout the world.

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of my characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. Hop hearty. Visit all the sites. Aspen

—————————————————————————————————————————–

Cleansing

 Air it out.  That’s the advice I got from the grannies.  Sun bleaches the age from it.  Moon beams soften the stains.  Rainwater rinses the memories.

So I tried..  Every remedy every granny remembered.  Cause the new products certainly hadn’t worked.

Four weeks I left it, pinned to the hedgerow for the full sun and moonbeams to work their magic—full moon to full moon.

Rains softened the fabric. Winds blew it dry. So many times.

But the stubborn shadow of Billie Bean remained. A portrait unpainted, ingrained in this fabric, as if hanging on to the life he lost when the noose that drew the life out of him dropped down onto my skirt.

I brought it in, wrestling it over my threshold. “My skirt,” I wrung the material angrily.

I dropped the skirt by my stool, turned my back for only a moment when I heard a rustling. Turning, I glimpsed the skirt fleeing my dwelling, swirling as if an angry body wore it.

How can the wool I sheared, the threads I spun, the weave I shuttled not be mine anymore? Why did Billie Bean choose my skirt?

How did he escape Death’s grip to stay on our plane?

Once the skirt passed my threshold, it crumpled, falling in a heap on the dusty path.

It still held a warm body’s heat when I picked it up. I carried it at arms length to the village square.

“Tell me what to do,” I demanded an answer from all the elders sitting soaking sunshine into their swollen joints. “Elements did not cleanse it. It fled my home.

None of the wise answered. They averted their eyes, clutching talismans, muttering spells, hands signing sigils of protection.

Momentarily I considered cursing Billie Bean’s spirit. But he was already damned, what might that do? As our village hung him for his horrific sins, we didn’t need more dark attention, more hell-spawn eyes tracking our innocence ways.

My gaze swung to the henge. I studied the circle’s shadows. If I read it correctly, tonight, when the shaman visited, he’d celebrate Samhain Rising. He’d ward the village from the specters as the veil between worlds thinned. Yearly he set wards. His fires burned white hot. Hotter than the blacksmith’s forge.

Would that I could rend the fabric, pull those threads that held his essence and drop them into the hottest part of the fire. I liked that skirt!

I petitioned him at sunset, asked advice, listened to arcane mutterings before offering him the garment. A smile bloomed over his craggy face, grateful, condescending, and evil, all at the same time.

Shuddering, I handed him the skirt I’d held all afternoon. I hadn’t wanted to sully our village any further by putting it down.

At full dark rise, as our people watched, the shaman chanted, walked the warding circle, lit the fires. He stood at the main village gates, before the fire. He held up his arms, screaming an invocation, pleading for another year’s defense against the enemies of light.

The flames leaped skyward on his final words. At that moment he threw my skirt at the blaze.

What a howl, an ear-piercing shriek, an unholy screech! Anger and denial in that cry.

The fire crackled, Sparks rose, shaping a sword in the air.

Pale shadows eddied on the far side of the wards. As if waiting for something.

 Another wail, closer, from the flames. This time like a plea.

The flames swooshed higher, forcing a figure formed from my skirt, high above.

We watched it struggle to return, moaning, pleading, entreating us to offer a compassion not shown to its victims.

Cackling laughter swelled past the village walls. Not ours, oh no. The presences held at bay by the wards made that sound.

 The pale shadows converged around Billie Bean’s final life-force, surrounding it, greedily sucking it into their maelstrom.

Evermore Chronicles Celebrates Coffin Hop 1st post

see lots more at:  http://coffinhop.com/coffin-hop-2013/  Oct 24, 31st, 2013

Hey Coffin Hoppers:

I’ve picked a number between 1 and 1,000.

Whoever guesses correctly or gets closest gets their name used as one of my characters in my next book. Only one guess per commenter, to be fair. Hop hearty. Visit all the sites. Aspen

Seeking My Answer

I crouch in shadows, between the crumpled fender and her.  To the growing gaggle of vapid onlookers I appear to be comforting the victim.

You can call my presence comfort.

Frantic calls eddy and flow around me as other onlookers scream, calling out for the police and ambulance.

A car door opens.  The sound of vomit spewing echoes across the pavement.  Acid scents waft under the car, defeating, for a fleeting moment, the normal exhaust miasma of the city.

I stroke her hair, subtly removing it off the blood leaking from the massive wound on her torso.

I touch the liquid silver tears she sheds, tasting in them that salty effluence of primordial oneness.

Her eyes flutter open.  She whimpers, grabbing my hand, squeezing my fingers in her pain.  Guttural noises croak from her crushed throat, as if seeking absolution in these moments before death.

She knows these are her final moments; I can see that weighty knowledge shadowing her eyes.

I hunch further, shielding her from the cool, fall wind.  That good Samaritan move allows the lone streetlight’s beam to shine across the growing pool of blood puddling in a concrete depression so ubiquitous in these city streets.  It coagulates a thin skin on the surface, the breeze bunching it into wrinkles against the black road surface.

Fascinated, I lean forward, drawn by the wafting coppery scents to enjoy watching her body’s secretions seeking finality with the earth.  I peer into that viscous mirror of her life, hoping to see some hint of exception, any sign of immortality.

Disappointed again, I watch it soak through the myriad of asphalt imperfections, striving to join infinity’s soul.

My focus returns to her eyes as her death rattles, timidly exhaling her final breath of sulfuric fouled air; perhaps proof of her destination.  Her widening pupils, graying with death’s veil, capture my attention.  I watch, captivated, hoping to catch that final moment, the soul’s release.

A speck of dirt, thrown by errant breezes I try to shield from, lodges in my eye.  I blink and once again finality foils me.

Her wound only seeps now as her heart stops its life beat.  The puddle skin of her blood pool, as black as the asphalt around it, glistens, reflecting only emptiness ay her final resting place.

I lean over that diminishing liquid, seeking absolution for my sin.  Her death, one more experiment to find the truth behind our life-force, the reasons for housing the soul.

I stand, arms crossed, my submission only to grief.  All the bystanders understand she fled life rather than fight.

The driver sobs, “I didn’t see her.  She came from nowhere.”

Because I pushed her, I admit, deep in my mind.  I work these streets, my laboratory, plying my sudden death experiments.  I give no warning to either victims; the now soulless husk on the ground nor the shocked driver.

My humanity demands I seek answers in death for the pain in my heart.

I straighten, slump my shoulders in defeat.  Another failure.  Not in her death.  Oh no.  But in my quest for eternal truth.

I slouch away, my mind leaping ahead, planning my next ambush, conniving now on finding another’s inattention.  I will not abandon my search for meaning to my life’s reason.

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