The Armor-Piercing Question

“Why are you here?”

It was a question he had not expected to hear, especially from what he could only describe as a spectre, so it took a moment to register. Still, the answer was simple enough, ”Because it’s home. Don’t most people go home, or see their lives flash before their eyes, when they die? Or did I miss the light at the end of the tunnel?”

It gave him a puzzled look as it hopped down from its windowsill perch and went across the room to the mantle where he leaned. Not so much with a walk, more like a glide across invisible waves. “It depends on many things. How and when they cease to be seems to effect what is here.”

That part made at least made some form of sense to him, as much as it could to the deceased. But that did not answer the question, “So, why are you so confused? I’m the dead guy here…”

It leaned against the mantle match him at eye level. “You speak of your family, those you claim to love. This is expected. But, they are not here with you. Here, you are alone. Why are you here? Why are you empty?”

That was the question that took him back. Maybe he hadn’t noticed it until now. Maybe he did and was trying to ignore it. Still, it was right. Here, in his life, in his death, he was alone.

He thought of them, all of his once and mortal happiness, all of his lifetime of love. He could rebuild the house they stood in nail by nail. He could see their faces, smiles beaming with gaps caused by missing teeth for his youngest or that more cocky grin that came from being an older brother. He could feel her touch along his arm, the softness of wife, the warmth of a mother.

Yet nothing appeared before him, nothing to fill the void within the walls where they stood. Only it remained, fixed to him with curiosity. Or was it impatience? How would he even tell?


So, it’s been a while since I’ve revisited this on-going scene. But it’s one that continues to grow as our dearly departed comes to know what exactly it means to be shuffled off from their mortal coil.

I hope you all enjoy

3 thoughts on “The Armor-Piercing Question

  1. Mayumi-H says:

    I really enjoy this back-and-forth of mortal soul and guardian/tetherer/guide. The dynamic is an intriguing one. For some reason, I picture that otherworldly one kind of a monster, but more in a Muppet-like way. Maybe scary at times, but not horrific. I’m glad these characters have stayed with you, as they’re an interesting glimpse into some supernatural/existential world.

  2. […] week, but this one couldn’t be contained to so short a space. Instead, it sprouted into a continuation of a story that as been building for some time now.What can I say, when the theme fits, the words follow. I […]

  3. Nice! Initially, I wasn’t so sure if “it” was a good being or evil–and I liked not being sure. Felt taunting to me, which was very cool. As I read on, I felt the being was more of a conscience or a guide, as Mayumi put it. Love this sentence: Not so much with a walk, more like a glide across invisible waves.

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