25 - student - NYC That's all for now.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Short Story - Part IV

Lucifer awoke in a sea of red. He could see that his left arm bled freely, yet no pain registered – though a dizziness hovered precipitously close, anxious to make its presence known. Shards of glass dug unnoticed into his back and legs. A pungent odor filtered its way through the air. Formaldehyde.

The corridor remained brilliantly lit, but permeated desolation. The only sounds were a soft trickle of liquid and the crunching of glass as Lucifer struggled to sit up. He found that his arm hung useless, drained of much of its vitality. In fact, the entire left side of his body felt chillingly light. Lucifer knew he needed immediate medical attention. He tried to collect his thoughts.

How was the normally bustling fourth floor suddenly the embodiment of solitude? Where was Ruloff? How could he stop the bleeding? Thoughts jumbled together recklessly. Had that old man done this? Lucifer drew frustrating blanks. As he brooded, a white excrescence cast over his vision. Recent memories flooded.

It was six weeks earlier. The snows melted the blacktop slick in a typical suburban theatre. Lucifer leaned back on the picket fence taking a deep drag of a cigarette. Smoke plumed through his nostrils in tiny horns. Winter break could not end soon enough as far as he was concerned. High school friends suddenly seemed strangers – they spoke of names unattached to faces, related stories that evoked no memories. Lucifer felt estranged and mildly rueful – lamenting the simpler days of youth when a blizzard meant snow forts and school closings.

Frosty gusts knifed his windbreaker as he inhaled another smoky breath and stared at the children. A small boy hovered anxiously beside his creation as the older girl marched imperiously about in inspection. She tutored the younger boy knowingly, rearranging several raisins and a carrot as her eager shadow squeaked and hopped alongside. Lucifer gazed at the scene coolly – his eyes shining mutely, the only movement, a tremble of his jacket in the wind.

Exhaling another pair of horns, he lifted the cigarette again to his parched lips. The girl had finished her fussing and was now squinting crinkled eyes at the spot where he stood.

But Lucifer was too busy packing snow into the base of his creation to notice Lucy’s preoccupation with a lonely spot in the distance. His older sister had finally finished adjusting the snowman’s particulars and Lucifer imagined only moments separated him from the creature’s sudden animation. He and Lucy had just that morning watched a program depicting a lively snowman with a stovepipe hat. So when those moments passed and Frosty still remained inert, frustration descended.
Lucy was still staring at the vacant point in the picket fence when Lucifer peered up at her.

“Watcha lookin’ at Lucy?” he asked.

“Nothing, Furry,” she mussed his hair distractedly, “I just… I just thought I saw someone just now… standing there watching us.”

Lucifer felt a cold shiver as he followed her finger to the fence. Perhaps the air grew more chill at that moment or maybe it was nothing, but Lucifer felt strange. A fleeting gasp of knowledge embraced his childish mind before fluttering free – a small moment of clarity that he had lived this moment before. Déjà vu.

A whooshing sound suddenly filled his ears as the world fell away into the horizon. Another familiar scene slowly developed in its place – a playroom full of plastic dolls, Legos and toy trucks. Lucy sat in a corner, fretting over something. A domestic scene played out nearby.

Leaving Lucy, Lucifer gnashed his cigarette into an ashtray as he followed the sounds into a kitchen. Beside a center island stood a couple talking in hushed tones. Threading his way through several stools, Lucifer approached the pair unnoticed. They continued their muted discussion.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep writing it- because I want closure of some sort. And because your vocabulary choices amuse me. (-elc)

11:09 AM


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