The Messenger

A day in my life, A day in my mind, Imagination, IRL

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The Messenger | This is a long one | If you have a chance to say one last thing to someone you lost: what would you say?

The lasts scenes were something i personnally lived. Seeing an empty appartment – once again – but this time, the goodbye was slightly different. More like a ‘real farewell’. The kind i didn’t expect to say or feel before i would be very old. Or never, actually. But it happened.

This will also be – hopefully – my lasts drawings about it. I’m moving forward. I can’t stay still forever.

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A day in my life, A day in my mind, IRL

I miss her. It feels like a dream. I feel like there’s a before and an after. And it’s noticeable by the way I’ve been lately. Am I gonna be this way til I pass away? Semi-sad every now and then, more often than before? At the verge of crying every time I hear something that she might like or say?

I was laughing right before he called. I remember having a good day: finished on time for once and preparing myself to walk out and embrace the sun that waited for me. When I received the phone call. From him. He never calls me. When I picked up, his voice was trembling, he tried to hold his tears. He asked me where I was and if I was alone. Then added that I needed to go home asap and not take any other calls, especially from my cousin. But why would I? And mostly, why would he call me? On my way, my pace fastened as my thoughts ran into my head. Something happened. To her. Something bad. I think I knew deep down what was going on but I didn’t want to jump into conclusion to fast. I needed to hear it from a solid source. As soon as I stepped into my appartment, I sat down, redialed the last number in my history and waited. Straight to voice mail. I tried one more time. Voice mail again. I decided to wait for him to call me back. Few minutes passed. Then, the sweet melody of the song ‘All of the light interlude’ came to my ears. He started with small talk, very small, then dropped the bomb. I didn’t know what to say. My mind went blank. We stayed on the phone for a minute or two: I asked how they found out and what could be the cause. Then he had an incomming call from our cousin. As soon as he hang up, I broke down.

The first thing I did after calming down, was my laundry. My rationnal mind stepped in. The next day, I had to go to her house and after that, I wasn’t sure of my staying. Oddly, when I lied down in my couch, I felt exhausted. As if all the fatigue I cumulated over the last six months just fell on my shoulders. As if I had to carry my entire world on my own.

The next day, I took my luggages, got into my car and drove for five hours. Five hours in a complete silence. No music, no thoughts in my head. When I arrived there, I saw three cars parked in front of the house. I recognized two of them but the third one was unknown to my memory. I stepped to the front door: do I ring the bell? Knock? I decided to go inside. I heard noise above my head. I went upstairs, widened a second door and paused. I saw my brother sitting in the hallway, facing piles of papers. Next to him, there was his girlfriend. She noticed me before notifying my brother. He stood up and walk to me. How are we supposed to act? Do we hug? Or… We greeted each other like we use to do, like two strangers. I did the same to his girlfriend, my cousin’s wife and finally my cousin. They all had those saddened eyes as they looked at me. I tried not to shed any tears in front of anyone but my cousin said something that made me almost crack: ‘My condolences.’ I nodded then turned my face away. Fast forward to later in the afternoon, we went to the funeral office. I held it down pretty well so far. But on our way, I got car sick. Usually, it’s just an headache and a slight stomach ache. This time was different. Way different: my body started to freeze. It started in my left hand, but I thought it was because I held the seatbelt too tight. Then it progressed in my legs to right hand. At that moment, I suspected that it wasn’t usual, so I asked if we could stop for a while. As soon as the car slowed down, I opened the door and stepped away from it. I sat down. The feeling slowly went up to my chest. I ddin’t understant what was happening. I felt paralized, I couldn’t move. It scared me. They told me to relax, to try to calm down. They put me in the car. They tried to reassure me. They succeded a little bit. Then I massaged my left hand, like she taught me once. I relaxed a bit. As I did so: I fell apart.

Arrived at the funeral office – I don’t how to translate that in english, sorry – they talked about what kind of care to did on her so far and explained to us the process of her funeral. Then we went to see her. My brother asked if I wanted to see her. ‘I don’t know.’ I was scared and didn’t really want to see her. It would make it all too… real. He told me to come anyway. When we entered the room, I saw her lying on the bed, in the middle of the room. I walked in front of her. She stayed still. Her chest wasn’t moving. Her eyes were closed. I looked at her, tears came up. I tried hard to keep them in, waiting for her to sit down and laugh to our faces, like she made a bad joke. But nothing happened. The silence killed me. I cried my eyes out in front of her inanimate body. I didn’t understand.. how could it happen? In between tears, I managed to say something: ‘This is so stupid…’ As he heard that, my brother took me in his arms. For the first time, I didn’t feel alone.

Let me tell you a story (8)

Let me tell you a story
  • ‘I beg your pardon?’ The man put the gun on a table and pushed it slightly towards me. I stared at the metallic object. The light reflected on it, enlightened my thoughts. ‘Wait. I was under the impression that I was… Well, important.’ I claimed. The man looked surprised that I knew something.

  • ‘You are, indeed. We can’t kill you. It will be a blasphema. But if you end your own life, then it’ll be different.’ He looked me deep in the eyes.

  • ‘How?”

  • ‘There won’t be any negative butterfly effect if you commit suicide. The world will keep on going in the course it chose.’

  • ‘What makes you think i’m going to obey you blindly?”

  • ‘Well, if you don’t, i’m going to hurt one of your guides then, eventually, kill them.’ I flinched. I felt a urge of anger coming out of my chest. My fist closed by itself. He smiled. ‘You were a med’student, right? That means you value life more than anything else.’ He paused in his pace and pointed Ethan. ‘This boy. You took him under your wings without any questions. Knowing pretty much nothing about him. That means you care about others more than yourself.’

A silence passed. I heard a movement behind me. The man’s eyes looked beyond my shoulder before slowly grabbing the gun. He stepped cloesr to me, took my right hand and placed the gun. He nodded then a rattle resonated in the background.

  • ‘Why? Why do you want me to commit suicide?’ I asked.

  • ‘Ha! Excellent question. As you might know, now: Ethan is our saviour. And in order for him to fulfill his destiny, there’s a need for a specific event to happen right in front of his eyes.’

  • ‘And that event would be my death. Specifically.’

  • ‘Well, not specifically. Any death would do the trick, actually. But I figured, if it’s someone he knew and cared about, it would be more:::impactful.’ He paced again, like a scientist explaining his process to solve a complicated equation. His words kept on repeat in my head. Any death would do the trick. Joshua Aikon. He’s not aware

  • How a death can make him fulfill his destiny?”

  • ‘It will trigger a certain state of mind that will lead him to become the savior that we will know. ‘

  • ‘It doesn’t explain me how he will become “the savior”.’

  • ‘He willl create the machine that will change the face of humanity.’ I stayed perplex on every words that came out of the man’s mouth. ‘He can corroborate this himself.’ I held the gun tighter.

  • ‘Himself?’ I wondered.

  • ‘Yes, himself.’ he replied while pointing someone behind me. Himself? I turned around and stared at Eden. I had a flashback of the moment I research his name on Google. I remembered pictures of him younger. He looked like…. Out of the blue, as my brain focused on Eden, a thought struck me.

  • ‘You’re saying Ethan is going to save the world…’ The man nodded, a proud smile on his face. ‘Then how do you explain their presence.’ I pointed the gun behind me. ‘Aren’t they, somehow, a proof that the world will not be safe?’ The man looked surprised by the question. He remained silent, speechless. ‘If it was safe and sound, why would they come back in the past to change it?’

On that moment, I truly believed Eden’s story. I brought my arm back in front of me and aimed for Eden’s uncle’s head. The uncle’s army reacted but I wasn’t scared for my life anymore, nor for Ethan’s. They can’t kill us. They won’t dare. Suddenly, in front of my back, I heard someone being knocked out and falling on the floor. Another raffe, then a loud noise. Another body hit the ground. Footsteps came closer.

A first gunshot resonated few steps behind me. I moved to my left as I saw Eden’s uncle falling, one hand on his shoulder. I turned to the source of the shooting. For a split second, I saw Eden with a satisfied smile.. Everyone started to shoot him. At the same moment, the later fired his gun and got shot in the shoulder. I fell on the floor, covered my head with my arms, pulled my legs to my chest and glanced at his second target. My eyes and mouth wide-opened. I froze.

Sounds were reduced to silence. People around me slowed down to stand still. Half a second passed but it felt like an eternity. Only one body was in motion. It was falling. Straight. Inanimated. As soon as it hit the ground, a hail of bullets rang brutally.

Ethan

My eyes couldn’t believe the scene that diplayed few steps away from me. He was lying, immobile. My body crawled automatically towards him. A female voice echoed behind me but i kept on moving forward until my head was next to his. Blood came out of his forehead through a hole. His eyes stared at the ceiling, a last tear dropped on the side of his face. He seemed peaceful. No… I couldn’t get my eyes off of him while fanatics and time-travelers emptied their chargers on each others. I wanted to hold him but my hands were trembling and my body didn’t dare to touch him.

Noises around me suddenly stopped. I gazed around and stood up. Most of fanatics were dead, some of them moaning in pain. Only few were physically unscathed, hiding behind walls. I looked in Eden’s direction. Sanaa pulled him against a pilar. His shoulder was bleeding profusely, turning his black shirt in dark red. As I stared at them, a rush of hate grew inside of me. I closed my fist and walked towards them. Every step put me deeper in the darkness of revenge. Until I noticed it: Sanaa’s face was sad: she was at the edge of tears. Eden tried to calm her down and reassure her. ‘Everything will be good, now.’ he whispered, a smile on his face. Suddenly, he writhed in pain. I scanned his body. Something was off: around his legs, I could see the floor, clearer as the time pass. My eyes went up. The wall became slightly visible. Eden looked at me. ‘The Earth will be safe, now.’ He smiled then closed his eyes, took a deep inspiration and released it. He was feeling the joy. He looked me deep in the eyes again, opened his mouth and said something, but my senses were shut off. Slowly, his hands became transparent, then his chest. Until only his head remained. He gave a last look to Sanaa before completely disappearing.

Few seconds later, as my eyes were stuck on where Eden was sitting, his words came to me:

 

‘Thank you.’

 

To be continued

 

Let me tell you a story (7)

Let me tell you a story

The night has come, the landscape was dark and the moon was the only Iight we could see. I was locked in Eden’s loft, sitting on the table. He took everything interesting with him, leaving me in a complete boredom. TRIAL Num.3. How many times did he attempt to change his present? What his Joshua’s role in this? And most of all: do I really believe anything they’re saying? An headache started to grow: my brain slowly committed suicide. I closed my eyes and put my face in my hands, trying to stop the process of self-destruction. Thoughts were bouncing off the walls of my mind. I felt overwhelmed once again. My heartbeat went faster and my body trembled. One thought kept on coming back and forth, stronger and stronger: Ethan. I needed to get him back by my side at all cost. I walked to the door and tried to open it. Closed. Well, that was expected. I looked around if there was any ventilation pipes I could crawl into and get out like in movies. ‘But this isn’t a movie… ‘ I whispered to myself. I gazed at the window.. Carefully, I stepped closer. In front of me, a landscape of rooftops drew its line in the dark blue sky. I wondered in which of those buildings was Ethan. I looked down. The distance with the ground was way too much for me to even consider jumping. I got lost in my thoughts when suddenly, the lock on the door opened. I turned around. The door slowly moved A metallic object appeared in the opening. A gun. I searched for a place to hide but there was no furnitures to get cover. I stood there like a statue, hoping to acquire the hability of invicibility in the next five seconds. As the gun moved forward, the person holding it appeared as well. It was Eden. I sighed as I felt relieved it wasn’t some crazier person. Behind him, a woman was following him closely. Sanaa…! She winked at me when she saw me. I was confused. ‘How…?” was the only word that came out of my mouth. They ignored me. Eden took some papers under his bed and notified us to leave. As I stayed immobile, Sanaa grabbed my arm and pulled me.

We were walking for about four hours. I didn’t know our destination, but Eden seemed to be confident. He led the way, few steps ahead of me. Sanaa, who watched my back, caught up to my pace. In whisper, she asked me: ‘Is it true that Joshua is dead?’ I looked at her, surprised by the words she used. I nodded. She looked down at her feet, her mind was lost in emptiness, then: ‘How?’ I glanced at Eden, wondering why she was whispering. ‘He shot himself in the head.’ She froze for a second. I observed her: she was obviously shocked. ‘Keep on walking.’ Eden said. I looked at him as he was turning his back to us. I focused back at Sanaa: she retrieved her usual face. The silence of the night became heavier. Sound of our footsteps echoed in the air. I slowed down to be at Sanaa’s level. ‘How did you get out?’ I asked. She smiled as an answer. I waited a moment before daring to ask: ‘Who is Joshua Aikon?’ I could see tears appearing in her eyes when I pronounced his name. A nostalgic smile replaced the mischievous one. She looked at Eden’s back, intensevely I didn’t expect her to tell me anything, as they avoided all key issues I raised so far, when: ‘He’s… was a good friend of mine. For Eden, he was a little bit more: he considered him as a second father. He has a profound respect for him.’ My eyes fell on Eden again. I saw him differently, somehow. ‘Joshua is…was the one who created the time-machine… In 2024.’ My head turned abruptly. ‘Yes, his death changes everything.’ I stayed speechless for a minute. ‘What do you mean?’ I finally said. She took a moment then put her eyes on mine. ‘It means that this is our last chance to avoid the world’s destruction.’ My headache came back. The mood became heavier. I stared at my feet as we kept on walking along a desert road. Suddenly, Eden stopped in front of an old barn. A large garden surrounded the building, we could only guess its shape in the darkness of the night. A metallic door shined with the moonlight. It was the only entrance, but it didn’t look like anyone used it for a while. I walked closer. As soon as I stepped on the grass, a big bright light blinded me. I heard the door opened and people running towards me. Rattles accompanied their every moves. They are armed. Two of them grabbed me by my arms and dragged me into the building. The hallway was pitch balck, I couldn’t see where I put my feet. My heartbeat was racing. I was scared and lost. I felt like this was the long way to hell. My view was barely adapted to the darkness that antoher light blinded me. ‘Enough with the lights!’ I yelled. They moved it away from my face. ‘Oh, my bad.’ Someone said shyly. I gazed around me: I was surrounded by a bunch of men staring at me like I was a caged rare animal. A man stepped forward. He had more presence than everybody else in the room. We stayed in silence, scanning each other. He sat down, released a long sigh and ordered someone to approach. A minute later, another man showed up holding Ethan by his shoulders. My eyes wide-opened. ‘Ethan’ I whispered. He looked at me, tears came up tp his eyes. I could see that he wanted to run to me but he was held back. I stepped once, they aimed their guns at me. I froze. ‘Stand down.’ The man sitting down said. ‘There is no need for violence at this moment. The danger is not in this room yet.’ My body started to shake. I gazed around: Eden and Sanaa weren’t there. Where were they taken? The man in charge waited. He kept his eyes on me for at least two minutes without blinking. When I couldn’t stand it anymore, I broke the silence: ‘What do you want?’ He smiled. ‘Nothing you can’t do.’ I didn’t understand. It’s like he was speaking in another language but from another planet. Really strange dialect. ‘We want you to do something for us.’ I glanced at Ethan: he seemed physically fine. The door behind me suddenly opened. I turned around as Eden and Sanaa were pushed in by two armed men. When Eden saw the man in the chair, he looked surprised. Chocked. So was Sanaa. ‘You… can’t be alive.’ Eden whispered. What? I looked at him. He had a bigger smile on his face but remained calm, even relaxed.

  • ‘You grew up, my nephew.’ he said.

  • ‘I’m not you’re nephew.’

  • ‘You’re father was a brother to me. That makes you my nephew. No matter what you think.’ He stood up.

  • ‘This can’t be.’

‘The old man you shot in that building was my paternal. You know: it took me a long time to find you. Both of you.’ He pointed Ethan and Eden. Very odd language. He looked back at Eden and smiled. ‘It’s a chance to see the two of you in the same place. A rare privilege. Don’t you agree with me, James?’ I didn’t know what to answer nor what to think. The man scanned me. He looked at Eden but the later kept his mouth shut. ‘Oh. He doesn’t know anything…? That is….Both admirable and, let’s face it, a little bit dumb.’ Without any hesitation, I ran towards him and threw him my strongest punch. He stumbled and fell down on the floor, spitting blood. ‘I hate it when people openly mock me.’ He raised his hand to order his men not to shoot me. He stood up and turned around. We stared at each other for a while, then he laughed. ‘I haven’t meet anyone this impulsive in a while. It’s refreshing.’ I wanted to turn and look at Sanaa to get any translation of what he was saying, but I was afraid he would attack as soon as my eyes leave his. ‘What do you want from me?’ I finally ask. He went back on his chair as a man ran to him with a tissue in his hand. I shook my head like a reflex. THIS is dumb. ‘We need something that only you can provide.’ He paused. He grabbed a gun and handed it to me: ‘We want you to kill yourself.’

To be continued

A day in my mind

He opened his eyes. The sun blinded him, instantly. His body was lying but he felt nothing underneath him. It took him a minute to remember: he was floating. Instinctively, he put his body upright and gazed around him. Near him, the surface was flat. But on the horizon, something scary was drawing. There was a wall of fog coming fast in his direction, accompanied by dark clouds. The peaceful surface wasn’t anymore. The agitation grew as the storm approached. He swam as fast as he could away from the danger. But his wet clothes were heavy and slowed him down. And soon, he ran out of energy. The storm caught up to him. First, dark clouds blocked the sunlight. Then a heavy rain prevented him from seeing more than a meter in front of him, followed closely by gigantic waves. Quickly, he was surrounded. To survive, he decided to swim through the waves as much as he could. He did well for a moment, but the weather got worst and he started to be out of breath. In the middle of his way under the ocean, water made its way to his lungs. He got out in extremis, coughing foreign elements out of his body. He didn’t have the time to catch his breath that a huge wave stood in front of him. It took him away in an instant. He was dragged according to the stream. He tried to swim to the surface but he was taken too deep under that he lost his bearings. He started to panic: he gesticulated in all direction using what was left of his energy. But it was in vain. He hardly held his breath. The need of oxygen became urgent. He reached his limits. Water made its way into his stomach, filling him up until he lost consciousness.

Where am I?…Oh, right: in the middle of nowhere. How did I end up here? I remember being on a stable ground. I was doing fine. Then I made a mistake. A stupid mistake. But they didn’t want to forgive me. So they tied me and force me to walk on that plank of wood. Someone pushed me, as I didn’t want to jump. I flew for a moment then found myself in the water. The rope wasn’t tight enough and I could free myself. But they left. I was alone in the middle of nowhere. I let myself carried away and miraculously fell asleep. Then there was the storm. And I’m dying. Alone.

As the thought of death stuck in his mind, he unconsciously relaxed his body. He was floating into deep water amongst fishes. Salt water filled up his lungs little by little. He couldn’t do anything. He remained lying in the dark. Inanimate.