Life (16)

Life

The sun’s warmth cuddled the first night of May, a sign that summer was closing up. Although the sky above him was clear, revealing its shiny dress, on the horizon, a wave of clouds was approaching dragging a curtain of commotion with it. A smell of ocean traveled by wind through the field of green grass surrounding the barely noticeable house. Strange, he thought. He looked around and judged his position: the closest sign of life was miles away and no sound of crashing water was perceptible. Cautious, he walked to the entrance of the one story house covered with leaves, then opened the door, making as less noise as nature. But as soon as put a foot inside, his body was abruptly pulled into the darkness before hitting the floor. A foot stepped on his hand, a knee crushed his chest while a hand covered his mouth. His breathe was heavy as a shy light uncovered a man, blood on his face. After lurking the roof for a good minute, the man finally let go of his grip then turned to his prey.

‘James.’ The man said.

‘Mr. Turner.’ James replied in between two breathings. Miles Turner helped the young man get back on his feet then walked to the main room.

‘What are you doing here?’

‘Euhm, I was send.’ The young man felt a huge pressure growing in his chest. The man looked at him.

‘Chris?’ James shook his head. ‘John.’ He kept a poker face. Miles Turner glanced at his reaction and tried to smile as he achingly laid on one of the couch placed in the middle of the living room. ‘How did you find me? Ha, no need to answer.’ James fell into a deep silence, analyzing closely his friend’s father: a dirty piece of fabric was loosely covering his left shoulder, blood flowed profusely from his body dripping on the floor. Miles Turner sensed an insistent look on him: ‘It’s not that deep.’ He paused. ‘What are you doing here?’

‘Today is his birthday.’ Turner took a deep breathe.

‘I know. I planned on coming home.’

‘What happened?’ Turner looked at James then diverted his eyes. Wow, so much like Chris. Or the other way.

 

Five hours before, Miles Turner was deep into the ennemy’s lair. He woke up in a dark room, shone by a shy light passing through the clearance of the door in front of him. As his vision brightened, he noticed his knees were one inch deep into water. Miles looked up and scanned his surroundings, recalling the events and reasons that lead to his situation. Right: i let them follow me  away from Chris then they ambushed me. A constant sound of water dropped from his left. Air was humid and cold despite springtime. After assessing his situation, Miles Turner stood up then suddenly found himself face on the ground. Ha, that hurts. He realized that his hands were cuffed behind his back. At the same moment, footsteps came closer to his cell. Turner managed to get back on his knees as the door unlocked then opened. A tall man in a black trench coat stepped in and looked down on Turner. Not a word came out of his mouth before the man started slamming Turner’s body with a wooden stick. The latter took the beating in silence, his face expressed no emotions. The persecutor stopped to switch arms, Turner interrupted him: ‘What day is it?’ No response. As the torturer swang his arm backward, Turner leaned on his leg to tackle the latter, breaking his chains in the process. In a matter of seconds, he knocked him out, eliminated the guards watching behind the door and started to run. A loud alarm went off. At an end of a corridor, Turner turned to the right where a squad armed to the teeth was waiting for him. He stopped dead then took a deep breathe. A second passed slowly. They abruptly fired up on him, when he rushed toward them his arm creating a invisible shield in front of him. He jumped them on by one, making his way to an exit. His last opponent was a little bit more resilient than the other, pulled out a knife as a last resort and in a lucky move, stabbed Turner in the stomach. Miles Turner disarmed the man before slashing his throat then fled. On his way out, a gunshot resonated in the warm air of May. Turner fell forward, rolled over his shoulder and looked back at his persecutor. ‘Fuck, that one hurts too.’, he whispered to himself. With his remained energy, he took off of the ground and disappeared in the light of the sun. In about two hours, Garner’s henchmen lost his track.

 

‘Nothing’, Miles Turner said in a sigh of pain. He waited a moment, scanned the roof again then stood up. ‘Let’s go.’, he limped to James, grabbed his bag next to him, then walked out. The young man followed him, still in silence, worries invading his mind as Turner’s breathe gets heavier.

 

 

To be continued

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Life (15)

Life

‘Hi! Where have you been?’ A voice came from their right: Karen was running toward them, her brunette hair swayed from left to right. She wore a full on Nike outfit with a fierceful look on her face, ready to destroy her enemy.

‘Wow! You’re taking it seriously.’ John joked.

‘Of course! And you should too, if you don’t want your ass kicked.’ John’s competitive mind was triggered.

‘We’ll see about that.’ He claimed as he stepped away, stretching his arms.

Left alone with Chris, Karen turned to her left and took a long look at the man walking next to her. Nothing much has changed in the few months that he had been away: still walking at a slow pace, with no intentions of going somewhere specific, hands in his pockets and a hood always covering his head. Though his silence felt less heavier than the first time they met. She waited for him to notice her then gave a smile when he finally did.

‘John told us you had to leave for a while’, her voice breaking the sweet music created by the breeze. ‘Was it because of my father?’ A pause set. Karen’s heart pounded in her chest, a drop of sweat teared down her spine as her temperature increased. When she was about to touch on another subject to lighten the atmosphere, her momentum got cut short.

‘It was more because of mine, but yours played a role.’ His voice was low, barely audible and slightly broken as if he hasn’t said a word for a while. Eyes locked on the ground, Karen fell into a silence, the guilt growing stronger. ‘Where are we?’ She looked up and realized he was staring at the tumult few meters ahead of them.

‘Oh! The guys are training us in kick-boxing.’ She said while throwing punches through the wind. ‘Wait. How are you here? If you didn’t know what we are about to do? Don’t tell me you didn’t ask.’ A silence. ‘Did you really follow John, above anyone else, no questions asked?’ Chris glanced at her. ‘You did! Oh my. Wow! I’m impressed by the level of trust you put in him. And a little bit scared for you.’ A smile transpired on his face. ‘You really are not afraid of anything, are you?’ She mumbled before running inside where the others gathered around John to begin the session.

‘Alright! Our beloved sensei do us the honor of being amongst us today, so training’s gonna be a little bit harder.’ John glanced through the door where Chris was standing straight like a Queen’s guard. ‘Ok! Mark! Mark? Who’s Mark? Mike, can you do the warm-up, please? Thanks.’ He walked toward Chris who stepped away. ‘You’re planning on joining us?’ Chris stared at him right in his eyes. Back to mute mode.

The day of he came back, conversations flowed easely: going from the life threatening subject to a more frivolous one like his relationship with Karen. When it was time to go separate ways, it only occured to John that the person he was speaking to rudymentary responded. That night, John decided it was best to keep Chris’ return from the others, giving him some time to recover and slowly return to society. It was two weeks ago.

John looked back a quick second, pointed at the inside and sat on the three steps in front of the dojo: ‘Sarah asked to learn how to fight, after, you know, the attack. She’s finally at a place where she wants to take action and not endure anymore. She told us that a week after you left.’ He paused, waiting for a reaction but nothing happened. Chris made few more steps backward as he looked away. ‘They asked questions about you.’ They locked eyes for half a second. ‘Where you were? If you’d come back. And if you were safe and sound.’ He paused again. John briefly smiled, seeing that Chris didn’t flinch at the idea that, beside him and his father, there are people who cared about him. ‘I just told them you went away for a moment. For the rest, they filled the blanks on their own.’ John observed his friend: no emotion surfaced on his face. ‘I didn’t tell them anything. But you already know that.’ Another smile appeared on John’s face.

Chris remained silent and still. Nothing in his posture nor behaviour showed that he was on the run for the past four months: going from a safehouse to another, in the middle of nowhere with no other way of transportation than his feet. No time to rest, sleeping on the ground, in the cold nights of winter, rationning water, food and energy. In two weeks, he managed to low his surveillance reflexes, although his muscles tense at any odd sound. John stared at him: he seemed at peace, standing there in the middle of the woods. But John knew something bothered him.

‘Have you heard from him?’ No response, as John expected. A silence passed. ‘He will get in touch. You’re his son, he can stay away for so long.’ A reaction: Chris slightly tilted his head to the left. John stood up and walked up the stairs then turned around: ‘Come on. Come back with us.’

 

 

To be continued

The climb

A day in my mind, IRL

I lost my mother. – Strange. The heaviness of that sentence has left. – It’s been almost two years. I’m not saying that my griefing process is coming to an end, but, it’s coming to an end. – Well, it feels like it – During the past two years, i’ve been at the trough of the wave: feeling nothingness to sadness, by way of guilt and regrets. The first few months, i forbid myself to laugh, to be happy. When i cracked a smile, an image of her – Well, the image of her absence – appeared in my mind. I faked wellness in front of people, as i tried to manage that image, that idea. The hole. That was emptiness.

Then came regrets. – Plural – As my consciousness slowly resurfaced to enable my capacity to make choices, my latest thoughts resurfaced too. The choice i made. The action i didn’t take. A new feeling grew: a pain that i couldn’t – still can’t – get rid of. And it hurt like hell. I screamed at the top of my voice and cried tears i never knew were in me, around the same date every month, in hope of making the pain go away. It didn’t work. The pain remained. Grew even stronger. Regrets became guilt.

I often asked myself if i could have done something to change the course of history. If making that call would have change something. If saying those words would have made her heart beat a little longer. I became self-centered and focused on myself. Isolation was my answer to death. I figured that if it all comes to this unexplicable and sudden end, there was no point on creating bridges with others. The result is just pain. This is sadness. I dove into it: listenning to her favorite song over and over and over and over and over again.

At a certain point, – this would be around the first anniversary – i was tired of having a dark cloud above my head. I tried to sincerely smile, laugh and enjoy every peaceful moments where i had no defined emotions, where emptiness turned into a luxury. But a thought always came back: don’t forget, don’t let time erase this feeling. I developped a semi-bipolar personality: my sleep was interrupted every three hours, nightmares invaded my brain, suicidal thoughts were passing through, my interest for art faded slowly.

Then anger filled every cell of my body without me acknowledging it. I noticed that my balance positivity/negativity was skewed. I began to see my future, stuck into a routine, surrounded by whiny, unorganized and close-minded people, always working overtime for nothing. –  See, negativity. – Frustration grew along. I became a crank. Once i realized it, I tried to manage my emotions as much as i could. But my mind was still clouded. – This was recently. – I looked for a change, took actions to create the change. I don’t want to surrender to this life. But everything that i began fell through. The walls drew closer. I suffocated.

When finally, a breath of fresh air present itself: i had a raise. – the greedy side of me came out strong, here. – For some reasons, when my boss told me that, i felt relief. – And i remembered specifically a spray of split flying from his mouth to somewhere very close to me. – A weight on my shoulders was taken. I slept well that night.

Fast forward to more recently. A thought started to blossom in my mind: am i allowed to live? At this point, i began to feel like myself again: plans were made for the future and inspiration and motivation came back. Then, my brother entered into a civil partnership with his girlfriend. – This was last week. – During the celebration party, their friends stopped the music to put the wedding theme and offer them a scratchbook to remember the moment, i looked at my brother, in the center of the crowd, laughing and in peace, – A bit embarrassed by the attention, too – and i thought to myself: he’s living. It’s allowed. Nothing bad is happening. This is a pure moment of joy and sadness is nowhere to be found. I finally accepted it: i can just be. Without repercutions.

Life (12)

Life

‘Karen!’ Thomas Sawyer pulled over on the crosswalk, got out of his car, slammed his door, attracting her attention, then walked to them. ‘Where have you been?’ He shouted, his eyes locked on his daughter. ‘Your brother has been found by…’ For a split second, his attention shifted to his right, noticing two men next to her: one of them with a thin light around him and the other one with a dead look. His pace stopped abruptly. A wave of clarity hit him. ‘You would wonder how he could become evil!’ He made a realization: ‘The child…’. Without any further thought, his fist tightened automatically as he came closer and, in a flowing movement, his hand smashed into the young man’s jaw who stumbled without a reaction. Unlike his friend who made a quick step forward that stopped dead. Sawyer glanced at the latter: a hand held him back. A second later, a huge amount of energy appeared further on his right. Thomas Sawyer felt a weight crashing on his shoulders. He stepped back slowly, as a man approached him. His palms were sweating, his heart pounding in his chest, making his breathing heavier. His back hit a tree and the man’s face was inches away from his. Sawyer couldn’t help himself but to dive into his eyes: they were filled with hate and anger. In the most calm voice ever, the man said:

‘Don’t ever touch him again.’ Sawyer swallowed with difficulty. They stood still a moment, before the man turned his back to get to the young adults. Gravity still weighed heavily on Sawyer’s body and air started to rarefy in his lungs. The man glanced at him one last time before lightening up the atmosphere.

‘Because of your son, mine ended up in a hospital.’ Thomas Sawyer claimed. The man stopped his walk short, took a deep breathe then turned around.

‘I don’t see the corrolation.’

‘Peace was made because you were dead. Your name resurfaced once and my son gets tortured.’ The man glanced behind him then laid his eyes on Sawyer again.

‘It’s what you did after that led to his torture. Not us.’ Sawyer remained silent.

 

Since his daughter mentionned the child, a terrifying idea bloomed in his mind: the family he once served was still alive and threatning his peace and family. Sawyer was on alert, analizing any odd event that could occure. Then began to see a pattern: Garner was building his empire back. Sawyer felt the sword of Damocles hanging close above his head. After assessing his situation, he decided to protect himself and his own by any means necessary. And for that, he contacted old partners, asking questions and therefore spread his suspicions to the world. One day, one of his fears became reality: his youngest son has been caught. For days, he looked everywhere, each corner of the city were combed and yet, he found nothing. Until an early morning, when the city broke, an barely audible groaning behind his main door attracted Sawyer’s attention. As he opened the door, he stared for a second at the body lying before his feet. Regaining his senses, he rushed to carry his son into his car then to a hospital.

 

‘You shouldn’t have done what you did.’ he said.

‘We did nothing wrong.’

‘You did that.’ He pointed at the young man next to his daughter. The man’s eyes changed: death appeared.

That is my son. He’s name is Chris Turner. Don’t forget that.’ Miles Turner kept a frightening composure. He took another breathe. ‘What we did didn’t arm anyone. You were the one murdering my family and friends. You are the one who did wrong.’ He paused. ‘But it is a time gone long ago. That doesn’t involve my son nor yours. You may blame me and my name for any of your fears for the future. But on this moment, you can only blame yourself for what is happening.’ Miles Turner noticed that he pushed a sensitive button and, before things got out of hand, he decided to walk away. As he turned his back, his attitude swifted: his body relaxed, his heartbeat slowed down and his eyes showed nothing but love when he put them on his son. ‘Are you alright?’ Chris nodded. ‘Let’s go home. Our situation is in jeopardy. You’re coming too, John.’

 

To be continued