a friendly conversation

a friendly conversation

A Story by Shy Joe
"

I am still working on this.

"
Compulsion.  I guess that is what you can call it.  I don't know why I do it, but it must be done.  - Death
   
Never having any blood run through my veins,  I was always curious why people value life in such a way.  It just looks complicated.  The resources it takes these creatures to do what they do.  The efforts they take just to keep living.  Why do they do this?  What is so great about it?  What purpose is it serving just to take up space doing this thing called "free will"? 

Life has to be valuable to them.  They all fear me.  Even the ones that pray for me, FIGHT, as I separate their soul from their vessel.  There is always a tug, a clinging if you will.  Resistance of separation.  But I always win.

That's my job.  I never sleep, never eat, never stop, and never miss.  I guess you can say I'm an overachiever.  Just one swift swing of my scythe, one touch of my cold embrace, and your life is over.

Sometimes I hesitate just a little just to watch events unfold.  I guess my curiosity has grown and gets the best of me sometimes.  Today was one of those days.  I will never forget this day.
*****************************************

I followed along the maze of life strands just like any other day.  Being where I need to be, when I needed to be there.  I never know where I will end up day to day.  I have served multiple souls at a car crash, and I have attended some alone in a lonely woods.  This one strand was a little unusual.  The calling for me was stronger than I have ever felt.  Frankly it gave me the willies.  It led me to a hospital, which was not all that different, but this life strand was not like any I have ever seen before.

This hospital was quieter than usual at 3 a.m.  You could almost hear the echo of my flight as I passed through the halls.  As I entered her room I could see the windows fog up a little.  A normal occurrence.  I was surprised to be led to a child.  I have taken so many other children to the other side.  "What made this ones strand so different?"  I asked myself.  None the less I had a job to do.  I hovered over to her silently. 

She was sleeping peacefully.  Splitting image of a perfectly sculpted doll.  Blonde hair, angel white skin, and the face of pure innocence.  I felt ashamed for what I was about to do, but it had to be done.

"Rest my child, may your laughs echo the halls of heaven."  I said as I bent down to bestow onto her a final kiss upon her forehead.

Right before I did, I heard the most heart warming "Hello."

I looked down and there she was, her blue eyes locked with mine.  I could almost feel warmth touch my chest. 

She smiled and said in the most innocent voice once again "Hello." 

I gasped and startled back in a jolt.  I have never been greeted in such a warmly manner.   The fearlessness in her stare made me want to turn and run!  No one has ever caused me to lose my guard.  For Gods sake I almost dropped my scythe!

We stared at each other for a while and she smiled and repeated "Hello.  I have waited such a long time for you." 

I felt such weakness that my feet hit the ground.  Confusion had engulfed me.  "This must be a trick to delay the inevitable" I thought.  I gathered myself and readied the scythe above my head and stepped forward.

"It's nice to meet you.  I have waited all my life for you.  You are all I ever dream of." she said.

My body grew weak once again as I lowered my weapon.  "FEAR ME CHILD!  I HAVE COME TO END YOU!"  I shouted in a bit of rage.

She did not even blink at the thought of my words.  "Come sit beside me."  she said as she patted the side of the bed.  She continues "Join me my friend.  What is your name?"

"CHILD MY NAME IS DEATH AND SOON IT IS ALL YOU WILL KNOW!"  I shouted with all my might.

She smiled and replied "How does one fear such a simple name?"

Never had I felt so vulnerable.  Never had I been so intrigued.  "Child, it's not the name you should fear but to what I do."  I said. 

The child replied "What you do is as easy as your name.  You are quick and sudden.  You are here and then you are gone."

Never been spoken to in such a way I sat beside her.  "Child,  I am here to take your free will.  No longer will you smile.  No longer will the sun kiss your skin.  The smell of a spring flower gardens breeze will no longer tickle and melt your heart.  Do you not fear this?"  I spoke softly but stern to her.

She replied  "All my life I have sat in this bed.  Pain is all I know.  The sun may kiss my skin,  but it bites my soul.  A flowers fragrance does not stop my pain.  The only smiles I have are for you." 

Totally dismantled now I asked one question more "What is your name child?" 

The child leaned in slowly, put her hand on my shoulder, and whispered into my ear "Suffering."

She then grabbed my hand and I went limp with pain.  Wounds split open all over as all my bones snapped and broke.  My body contorted in pure agony as cancer ate my heart.  I could feel starvation eat at my muscles as they  grew weak and begged for substance.  She then let go and my pain subsided.

I crawled to the far corner of the room and coward in fear. I watched as she stood up on the bed and grab my scythe.

I could see the fire in her eyes as she bellowed out, "You think yourself a monster!?  You are the Savior!  I am the one that makes men cry!  I am the one that brings famine!  When people beg for water I give them sand!"

She continued while pointing at me, "You are Heavens soldier!  You are Hell's mercenary!  You keep this world right!" 

Tears started to stream down her soft cheeks as she broke down crying, "I bring pain. I make the smell of a rose burn your soul.  I make men drink and women cut.  I make war torn amputees, hobble, and crawl to safety as their brethren die around them."

"....and I feel it all" she sobbed.

She looked up and we locked eyes again.  She then took my scythe and thrust it into her heart.

She fell to her knees upon the bed and with her last dying breath, stared into my eyes with her sky melting blue eyes and said "I am whom that should be feared."

She then lied down, and her body went limp. 

I could not move for what felt like hours.  I just sat there with my knees up to my chest, stunned and horrified, like a shell shocked soldier. The silence was broken after a bit by the sound of streaming blood that had run down from the sheets of her bed and had begun to splatter onto the floor. 

I gathered myself up, took a deep breath, and hovered over to her.  For the first time I could remember,  I felt compelled to weep.  I fought it off though, because I seen the smile on her face.  I knew she was in a better place, for now.

I removed my weapon out of her chest and gave her that kiss.  The cold shiver and the distant howl as her soul left her body will forever haunt me.  I righted my mind back to focus and left.  I still had a job to do.  I always do.

I think about her all the time. 
I'm sure we will run into each other again.  She will be reborn.  There will always be a place for her on this earth.  I will wait for her prayers for me, and next time around, I will be swift.

© 2017 Shy Joe



Author's Note

Shy Joe
This is unfinished and is a work in process as of right now. I am open to any and all suggestions. Be brash if you must.

My Review

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Featured Review

Intriguing. I like the characters. There are a few misspelled words, but you'll find those as you edit. Suggestion. The child is suffering and racked with pain, yet she finds the strength to stand and kill herself with Death's scythe. I think that her words would be more powerful if she remained calm, even though I like what she said to Death. And because she is so weak, it would be more believable if she remained in bed. I think that she should invite him to kill her once she is finished speaking, as she is the one who has called him there. Maybe Death could regret not being swift to begin with and letting her suffer longer than he had to. I enjoyed the open ending. "There will always be a place for her on this Earth" and "next time, I will be swift". That is a good way to end this.

Posted 11 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Shy Joe

11 Months Ago

Thank you for the honest review Connolly. I always treasure other peoples opinions and ideas on a w.. read more
D. Connolly

11 Months Ago

You're doing great :) Don't be shy about letting me know about fine tuning any of my stuff either. .. read more



Reviews

This was very entertaining. Are you a fan of Neil Gaiman by chance? I love his work and I got similar vibes from this piece due to the manner in which you personify these abstract deities. I love how it's so dark, but also oddly gentle and opens so many paths of thought. The way these being experience the world and have become personified has always been a huge interest to me. Please don't let this go unfinished as it shows great promise. There are a few spelling and grammatical errors, but nothing so terrible as to completely destroy my immersion.

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

This comment has been deleted by the poster.
Shy Joe

5 Months Ago

Thank you for the wonderful review. I've never read any of Neil Gaiman's work, but now I will look h.. read more
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Sam
I enjoyed reading this story, but like the other reviews said, you could definitely add more. There are a couple of grammar errors, but those are easy to fix. Nice job!

Posted 7 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I really like the story behind this and the interpretations available for the reader, though it is clear enough to understand what can be interpreted. I agree with the other reviews as well, so I will leave my comments there. Well done, thank you for this story.

Posted 9 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Shy Joe

9 Months Ago

Thank you for reading my story Morgan. I always enjoy input on my work. I will have to rework this.. read more
This more feels like a vortex of a tragedy. I like how you set this story up. But, you could always do more. You could always do better...

~LG

Posted 10 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Shy Joe

10 Months Ago

Thanks for reading and reviewing my piece. Could you elaborate on what I could do more or better on.. read more
Locket Grey

10 Months Ago

Instead of flat out saying what the girl is. You can give hints and symbols. Death can be "soul coll.. read more
Shy Joe

10 Months Ago

Thank you for your valuable input. You make a good point. I will have to add a little bit more sus.. read more
Intriguing. I like the characters. There are a few misspelled words, but you'll find those as you edit. Suggestion. The child is suffering and racked with pain, yet she finds the strength to stand and kill herself with Death's scythe. I think that her words would be more powerful if she remained calm, even though I like what she said to Death. And because she is so weak, it would be more believable if she remained in bed. I think that she should invite him to kill her once she is finished speaking, as she is the one who has called him there. Maybe Death could regret not being swift to begin with and letting her suffer longer than he had to. I enjoyed the open ending. "There will always be a place for her on this Earth" and "next time, I will be swift". That is a good way to end this.

Posted 11 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Shy Joe

11 Months Ago

Thank you for the honest review Connolly. I always treasure other peoples opinions and ideas on a w.. read more
D. Connolly

11 Months Ago

You're doing great :) Don't be shy about letting me know about fine tuning any of my stuff either. .. read more

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Shelved in 2 Libraries
Added on November 2, 2016
Last Updated on March 8, 2017
Tags: Death, suffering, child, fear

Author

Shy Joe
Shy Joe

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