anbwrites

Posts Tagged ‘stories

Note:  This is the Point of View of the antagonist, Jackson.

 

 

Old man Ross couldn’t have taken longer inside the store.  I tried my best to keep my distance as I followed him.  My fingers tugged at the loose strings of my sweater, tattered and torn, just like my insides felt.  I cursed myself for wearing such heavy clothing during 95º heat, yet I didn’t have much of a choice.

I waited patiently beside my van as the object of my rage and hatred walked toward his car.  He didn’t deserve that Impala.  It should have gone to me, not to my dad’s war buddy.

I could feel adrenaline coursing through my veins like nitroglycerin as I pulled the gun out, which I had successfully concealed beneath the waistband of my jeans. 

“Stop right there,” I tried to project my voice and sound stern and strong, yet I feared I sounded weak.  The voices inside my head continued to taunt me and say that I was a failure, and that I couldn’t do it.  My dad’s voice was the loudest, and no matter how hard I tried, I could never ignore it.

He called me son and protested; yet his so-called term of endearment only fueled my anger.  “It’s too late for that, old man,” I spat.  “Get in your car, and listen to my directions.  Or else you’ll never make it to that party.”

I had anticipated more of a fight from the old man, yet received none.  I knew his son Ed well, and worked with him often down at the funeral home.  His son was a doctor, and I was simply an assistant.  Ed had mentioned his son Abel’s birthday party, and I knew instantly that it was the perfect time to track down Ross and confront him.

He drove too slowly for my taste, yet I remained patient as we made it to my dad’s house in Buckridge.  I ushered him out of the car with some force.  He needed to know that I meant business.  I rolled my eyes as he stumbled and I pressed my gun against his back.  “Come on, come on, get inside.”

He made some insignificant talk about cutting him some slack, yet I wasn’t having it.  I kicked the back of his leg, which sent him into the dirt.  It was befitting, for he was just as significant as dirt, if not less.

After getting him inside, I struggled to pull the zip tie around his wrists.  I knew he was old, yet he still looked like he held onto at least some of his former strength.  I let him know that I was going to the shed, since my dad’s tools were there.

I was going to make him feel the same pain as I felt when the soldiers in uniform walked up to my front door and told my mom and I that my father had been killed in action.  I was going to rip his heart from him, just like he had done to me.

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Note:  This is the Point of View of the protagonist, Ross.

 

 

I couldn’t wait to get home for my grandson’s birthday party.

He was going to be turning six, and I promised my son and daughter-in-law that I would be there.  It was a sweltering day in one of Georgia’s most unforgivable summers.  I hit the grocery store on my way to the party for some last-minute items.

I went through each aisle to gather soda, chips, and also picked up a card that I thought Abel would like.  After checking out, I made my way to my Impala that I, regrettably, parked far away.  I was getting old and staying in shape wasn’t that easy for me.  So making small changes like walking farther to my car made a difference, or so I liked to think.

“Stop right there,” a voice said, and it took me a moment to decipher whether or not I was the one being addressed.

I looked around and saw that I was the only car parked in the area.  Damn, I thought.  I turned around slowly with my bags still in my hands and faced a man wearing a camouflage sweater and a hat pulled down far to shield his face.  His hand was extended, trembling slightly while trying to point his gun at me.  “Son, this ain’t a good choice that you’re makin’,” I began, yet he laughed nervously.

“It’s too late for that, old man,” he said.  “Get in your car, and listen to my directions.  Or else you’ll never make it to that party.”

I did my best to maintain my composure.  Fear that he knew my family and my plans gripped me tightly, yet I did as he said.  I followed his clear directions while on the road and ended up at a small ranch-style house in the middle of nowhere.  The closest landmark I had picked out was Clearwater Springs, a nice place to call home, or so the sign said.

The young man ushered me out of the car and I ended up stumbling due to my weak knee.  I muttered a curse under my breath as he jammed the barrel of the gun against my lower back.  “Come on, come on, get inside.”

“I ain’t as young and nimble as you are, junior.  A little respect for your elders would be nice right about now.”

He kicked the back of my bad knee and I fell forward onto the ground, dirt and dust spiraling around me.  I bit my tongue as I had been taught as a kid, knowing all too well that my tongue could be my downfall.  After all, that was often the cause of death in my family.  I sensed the man’s strength as he pushed me along, and decided the smart decision would be to not fight my way out of this—at least not physically.

I mulled over things as we walked into the house.  It smelled of wet dog and rotting chicken.  There were many pictures up of a man in uniform, who seemed to have fought for The Union back in the Civil War.  Other pictures were newer, and didn’t hold as much character.  I didn’t know who the people in the frames were, and still hadn’t seen the young man’s face to make any sort of comparison.

He shoved me down into a chair and pulled my hands behind the back of it before enclosing my wrists with a zip tie.  He checked the tightness of it and muttered under his breath as he got back onto his feet.  “Alright, I have to go get a few things from the shed before I get to work here.”

As he walked away, I turned around as best I could in the chair and caught a glimpse of his face as he removed his hat.  He wiped the sweat off of his forehead as he walked out.  He looked vaguely familiar, if my declining memory served right.  I spun around some more, my gaze landing on a jacket with a nametag on the front.  It read, “Rogers.”

Jackson Rogers, I thought with a grin.  “Well I’ll be damned.”

It was just one of those nights.

It was one of those nights where nothing felt right.

It was one of those nights where there was a silent ache inside of my heart, and I felt empty.  I felt alone, no matter how hard I tried to feel otherwise.  I longed for happiness, even though I couldn’t remember what it was like to be truly happy.  Every fiber of my being screamed for me to cry, and was in pain from holding everything in.

But I couldn’t.  I held on to the pain, for it was all I knew anymore.

The darkness of the night enveloped me in its chilly embrace while the moon smiled down as I walked.  I had taken the same route home from work on a nightly basis for a few months now, ever since my car died on me.  I was a creature of habit, and stubborn as a bull.  I paid attention to my surroundings, I stayed in well-lit areas, and I did what everyone is told to do when they’re in school: don’t talk to strangers.  It was a 30 minute walk from Stacey’s Pub to my apartment on East 45th Street, and I never ran into any trouble.  I tugged my jacket zipper up to protect myself from the cold.  Everything felt normal, somewhat, until I heard footsteps behind me.  Usually, nobody else was on the sidewalk at 2AM, unless it was Billy the Homeless Guy, who I befriended with a sandwich and a bottle of Gatorade.

It’s probably just someone else walking home from work, I told myself.

“Hey, sweet cheeks,” a man’s voice called from behind me, and my heart sank into my stomach.

I dug around in the deep pockets of my jacket for my pepper spray, ready to do damage if this guy tried to hurt me, but I couldn’t find it.  Panic swept through my veins, and my senses moved into a state of high alert.  “Sorry, babe, I snuck that pesky pepper stuff out of your coat while you were working.  I couldn’t let it get in the way of our time together.”

My instinct told me to not even bother looking back, so I didn’t.  Instead, I started screaming and I propelled myself forward.  With adrenaline pumping its way through my body, I quickened to a sprinting pace, hell-bent on getting away from whoever was behind me.  I swung my arms by my sides to make me go faster, yet went tumbling down onto the harsh pavement after something hit me between the shoulder blades.  I yelped as my body convulsed, as if I had been electrocuted.  “G-Get away from me!  Help!”  I struggled to scream as my attacker knelt down above me with his hand cupping my chin, his fingertips pressing deeply into my cheeks.

“Shh, nobody is out this late at night.  I’ve been watching you for quite some time now, Alex.”

Tears streamed down my cheeks as he pinned my arms down by my head.  “Take my money, take my purse, just let me go!”  I tried kicking my feet, and attempted a few times to knee him in the groin, yet to no avail.  “Let me go!  Don’t kill me!”

Kill you?  What do you think I am, some kind of murderer?”  He laughed and shook his head while his knees dug themselves into my thighs.  “I don’t want your money, Alex.  I want something that money can’t buy.”  He held both of my wrists tightly against the ground as his free hand dug in his pocket and retrieved a knife.  It glowed brightly as he dug it through the flesh of his forearm, making him hiss.  He then used the blade to cut an intricate pattern on the inside of my wrist.  I continued to cry and beg for him to stop, because not only did the knife cut me, but it felt like it was burning my skin.

“Alex, you will thank me later for this,” he smiled as he switched hands and pressed his forearm, oozing black blood, onto my wrist.  For a moment, I felt nothing, and then my eyes rolled back into my head as I began to convulse.  I couldn’t see what was happening anymore, but I could still hear, and I could feel.  I felt ice and fire burning through my body, and this gnawing pain in my chest.  I also no longer felt the weight of his body on me anymore.

“Samael, you think you’re such a sneaky bastard, don’t you?”  Another voice, one I thought I had heard before but wasn’t sure, growled.  I heard some scuffing around, and some pained cries, before the sound of bones breaking.  “This will be the last human you harm, and once you regain the strength to travel, you can send that message to your boss for me.”

I finally began to go numb, until I felt a hand caress my cheek and I heard a sigh.  “Alex, fight it.  I’m going to take some of it away, but the rest of the poison is going to stay inside you.  Just hold on, okay?”  If I could’ve moved, I would’ve nodded.  I felt the same hand, which was slightly rough, touch the cuts on my wrist.  The numbness slowly transformed into a comforting warmth, as if I was sitting beside a fireplace.  Eventually, I was able to open my eyes again, and found myself looking at Billy the Homeless Guy.

“Billy?”  My voice sounded incredibly dazed as I noted his features; the ice blue eyes and the long brown hair, the tan skin and the beard.

He smiled.  “Actually, the name’s Gabriel, and I’m an angel.  You haven’t done much right in your life, Alex, but the day you fed me was the day you gained a guardian.”