Ever since I was young, my favourite subjects in school were literature and art. I disliked all projects where you were supposed to talk in front of a class and I preferred to express myself through words and paint. And I started writing stories that were forming in the back of my mind while in class, walking home, during a conversations with a friend, while hearing a particular song. Some were formed while I was going through a rough time and in order to calm myself, to try and get through what was happening, I would write.If at some point in time I forgot who I was when I was younger or how I managed to move on from whatever happened, I would go and read. Read the countless of stories that still exist, still live in my old computer, ready to share their wisdom with me again.
With the story below, I had no idea where I was going or how would it end. I knew the beginning and with each word, each sentence, I let myself go. It felt like the characters I created took over their own lives and told me “No, this is what I would do. Let me. Watch.” I did not know what I wanted to tell myself until I finished the last word and read the whole story through different eyes.
It was not about fear of doing something extremely difficult or something that I did not want to and I thought I could not bring it to completion. It was the fear of not having someone that cared, someone that would be there for me and listen, understand and help me back to my feet when stumbling through life.
I know now that this is not true. That no matter how hard it is or how many terrible things you have been through, there is someone that cares for you and will be there when you fall. Maybe you do not know them now and you think that you will never do, but you are loved. Believe me. Someone cares and will be there for you. You have to keep fighting and once you passed that painful period, you will look back and see a warrior, someone that survived and can tell a story that will also help others, save a life. You might not run into what the character had to overcome but it does not mean that it is not equally painful.
So, I want to say to you – stay strong and…enjoy the reading. 🙂
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“You can’t kill me. Even if you could, you can’t bring yourself to do it. You’ll hesitate. Again.”, the shadow said in a quiet voice, looking gloomily through the window.
Drops of water were falling on the stained glass. Branches from the big tree outside were smashing into the old house, fighting with the brick and wood, trying to find a way inside. Lighting and thunder danced their ancient song, with each passing second, louder and stronger than before. The sky was pitch black, mashing all world into one big mess of wind, rain and clouds.
As the shadow spoke, vapours formed on the window where it was leaning into. The freezing air and darkness outside were in contrast with the warmth and pale light glimmering in the room. Broken furniture was scattered around the place, some into so many pieces that you could not remember how they looked like before. Others were upside down, half burnt or turned into ashes.
The only object that remained almost intact was a painting of a family, two parents and their son, all dressed up and happy. The edges started crumbling away and its quality was reduced by old age and smoke but the faces were still recognisable. The father had his arm around his wife and his young son, barely ten years old who was standing to his right. Everyone had light brown hair and bright blue eyes. Their clothes were old and wrinkled but still looked new, as if were only used for special occasions. Under the painting was a candle, its fading light keeping the darkness out as much as possible.
“Not now”, said a wobbly voice from the doorstep. “Not this time – I will, I must…kill you.” He took a deep breath and closed his eyes, dreading what was about to happen. A small drop fell down his cheek all the way to his chin before it was followed by similar ones. He took another breath. And another.
Stop it, you moron, put yourself together. You can’t fail again.
“I can do this.” He spoke to no one in particular, so quiet that was barely heard. He took a step forward, slowly and then another and came to a halt. With his hand, he wiped the tears from his cheeks and opened his eyes.
The shadow was less than a meter away from his face.
“How many times will this situation repeat itself until you realize that I will live another day?”, the shadow asked quietly, with no intent of sarcasm or evil in its voice. Its face, despite the dim light, was covered in darkness, only its eyes visible, shinning a pale green of sadness and hurt.
“Stop it”, said the shadow softly. “Just…stop.”
It reached out and took the shacking hand of the person in front of him, the hand that was holding the knife pointed at its heart. It loosened the grip and let the weapon fall to the ground with a loud noise. The contact of the knife and ground let out a continuing ring which was only silenced by the thunder. Even after the vibrations of the impact died out, it kept ringing in the person’s ears, making their head hurt.
With its other hand, the shadow wiped the tears that were falling on its supposed attacker and without a warning, it took him into a tight embrace.
“It’s alright. I – I’m…it’s all alright.” The shadow whispered, trying to comfort him.
The person, startled by the sudden and unexpected show of affection, remained still for a few seconds, trying to grasp what was happening. He lied if he did not admit that it was something that he needed for a long time. He took another deep breath, relaxed and returned the hug hesitantly but once he did, he did not let go.
And after all that time when he tried to keep it all in, to be strong and not show any emotion whatsoever, he just let go. And once he did, all the memories, all the hurt and pain came rushing in, to overwhelm and make him fall again. But this time, he knew. There was someone to catch him and bring him back. As soon as he realised that, he smiled and hugged the shadow tighter.