There are moments of thought, the unadulterated type; when you lie down and try to drift to sleep, but where the mind races. Almost as if entertained by the solitude, given a chance I suppose. Everything is laid out, the entire day backtracked, each line, each smirk. Then further past that, those mistakes, those close chances. An unwanted, but a needed review. I guess I question if we would be such fuck-ups if we just took a second from entertaining ourselves to just look at where we were going. The compass of thought, it knows the way, regardless how we take it.
Shadows drift in and out of existence or ever existing. I blink and they shift, I try to stick my attention into them, and not the thought that circles the drain of my brain, ever winding, ever repeating. I try to focus, but it ever changes. As if a parlor trick, I reach for the cup that hides the bead, nothing but more thoughts lies underneath a million cups. I’ll grow tired of this I think, no I won’t I think. I stir more and more until the mess of my blankets are a distant memory to the be occupied with a twisting suckling remains, tighter and tighter. I try to pay attention to those, but my thoughts move to every sheet I have ever laid on, and the ones I shouldn’t have. I have made mistakes, I have become something unwanted, but not so far off, wanted.
The morning, with clear blue skies almost mocks the idea of waking up. My throat rasps a dreary sound of too many cigarettes and not enough water. I cough because I do the things I am good at, and coughing happens to be one of those things. A dull whimper comes from the once cracked and broken bones as I lift my remains from bed. My cold feet touch the colder floor. I am alive, is what a poet would think, but I am not one. A sliding sound, the kind you would hear if someone was moving something beyond their weight across the floor, that sound is my feet as I drag myself into a routine I should give up. I look at myself and I know what has become of me and the direction I am facing. But I brush my teeth all the same; because that’s important.
Tying my laces I am entertained by my fingers knowledge, regardless of the fact they have none. Putting the flask into my back pocket the door knocks, an expected knock. Smiles exchanged, all falsified. I throw the papers on the floor and I lie next to them. An unknown, because I make unknowns. I grin at the prospect but forget to tell the motions otherwise. So smiling down on the papers, when a cannonade of cruelties I couldn’t fathom the imagination for crashes on me. 27,000,000 dead, a count higher than I have ever seen before. I couldn’t visualize who could do such a thing. I flip the pages back to where the picture sat, I rip it from the paper clip. My hands shake.
Their picture lies in the middle of the floor, like a snake that’s venomous I try my best not to make eye contact. By the grip I was forcing onto my knees it would seem as if I was trying to rip my kneecaps out, and I cannot say I didn’t think about it. My thoughts, the poison in the water. I could kill myself, stop this now. 10 years of joy would be better than 29 odd years of hate, of pain. I cry. I do, because if you were faced with the task of killing your parents to save 27 million people you would cry too. If not, then, I am sorry. But I shed tears of liquid doubt and they splash against my despondent floor. I could make a cocktail for depression now, however, I don’t think I have enough glasses. Sitting there alone, thankful, when the unthankful happens.
There’s a sort of crackling sound from my den as if the air was unsure on the direction it should go. I stifle my tears and stand up, my foot still hurts but I ignore it. I make my way into the den and a lamp is on, for no reason I’m sure of it. Sky sits on one of the armchairs with her fingers on the lamp’s string. Raisin pours himself a drink. “I hope I’m not too late.” He says as he taps the bottle on the glass to get the last drop. “You seem to have pretty good timing.” I say hobbling my way into the room. “Sky, dear, why don’t you go outside and play on Karl’s nice grass there.” She leaps up from the chair and gives me a hug across the legs then runs out of the room. “A smidge unexpected I suppose.” he says as he extends his hand to shake mine. I embrace him, hugging him for all he’s worth for probably too many seconds. “Well then, a smidge unexpected for the both of us.” He sort of wiggles his way out my grasp. “So you’re in a sorry spot, ay?” He hands the first glass to me and takes the second. I nod and reply “The sorriest.” We clink glasses and drink. Walking to the window he pulls the curtain “I shouldn’t have to explain to you how important she is to me, how important her existence is to you.” I gasp in liquor at the thought, I can’t help but think of every life I have tried to save or have incidentally saved. “It may be tough, the thing you have to devour, but I am here with you.” He removes his fingertips from the curtain quickly as he coughs into his hand. He looks at it, frowns, and wipes it onto his jeans.
I retrieved the envelope from the living room floor and show it to Raisin. His confusion, turns into a frown, then that into action. “So you’re thinking you can save them?” He asks. “I wish.” I said with a sunken head. Slapping me on the back Raisin gives me a fragment of hope. “We can save them.” I pulled the papers from the closet that I stuffed away a year ago. My detailed plans, as I looked over them, seem foolish now. We laid them out on the floor. The scribbled notes. The map of the house. We then go over each one, looking for flaws, as more and more were found I felt bad for my younger self. We scribble more notes on top of my notes. Raisin brings his military experience, and I bring my foolishness to the table. Within 30 minutes we had a plan. Raisin coughs again, specks of red sit on his palm and lips. He wipes his hand away but I point out the remaining dots. He gives sort of an embarrassed wipe then excuses himself to the bathroom. I hear him gargle water as I move myself to the window. I watch as Sky tries to catch a white butterfly that flutters over the lawn. As if called by an unknown voice she forgets the butterfly to run to the yellow flower. As she crouches down to pick up the dandelion the light hits her face in a way to make her seem familiar. I feel crossed with the thought when Raisin walks back into the room. I turn around and he fans a folded piece of paper as if he was unsure of the purpose for it. I pick up his glass and mine. Walking towards him I hand him his liquor. He takes it with his free hand and drinks. “Is everything okay?” I ask him as I stare at the paper. “Peachy, just peachy… I need you to have this.” He hands the paper to me. Taking it I begin to open it. “No, don’t look at it now, it’s a just in case, you know if things go south for me.” I toss the folded paper onto the stack of others. I catch eye to the note that I found on my person one year ago and stuff into my pocket. Looking up to Raisin I speak. “So I won’t be needing it then.” Raisin smiles, and I smile. We click our glasses together.
We walk outside, to join Sky in her play. It seems like one of those moments where everything is perfect. Raisin calls her over. She takes his hand. Gripping my shoulder Raisin asks “You got the things right?” I pat my pocket and give him a nod. He smiles and we disappear.