A moment of sad enlightenment later . . .
You travel through blood, I say to my former friend. That’s how you do it.
“Juan, put the goddamn gun down!” Mr. Green yells, his pistol steadied at Juan’s head.
He’s not Juan anymore, I say calmly.
“You’re an idiot, Jack,” Evil Juan says in the queen’s English. “So busy trying to fix your own mistakes you didn’t pay attention to what was really going on around you.”
The light glowing in my left eye giving me advanced knowledge of where the bullet is going to enter, I say, “ . . . why?”
Juan laughs, “Evolution, you talking monkey. God holds the key to a human being’s afterlife. We’re going to be greater than human. More than human . . .
“ . . . we’ll be better than God.”
“Is it, Jack? Is it? We’re going to evolve past humanity. We’ll become something bigger, grander, and we will be beyond the whims of a jealous, angry, vengeful God. An unworthy God who’s been asleep at the wheel from the start.”
Who are you to decide?
“Who is he?” Juan yells angrily. “You don’t even know where you belong. He doesn’t love you. You’re just a low level employee. Barely middle management. You could have come with us. You could have been the twenty-forth.”
What you’re doing is unnatural. It goes against the natural order of—
“The natural order . . . ” Juan says, the words trailing off into laughter. “Are you serious? Really, are you having a laugh? This is the natural course. Evolution through change and chance and struggle . . . that is nature. It’s just too bad you couldn’t have been a part of the new era.”
His finger tightens on the trigger as he says, “You should have stayed dead, Jack.”
I have my Rambo knife on my left hip, a pistol on my right thigh. But I know I’ll never reach either of them before he ventilates my head.
“Tell me what to do,” Mr. Green says, dropping to a knee for support . . . to aim at his target.
Put your gun down, Mr. Green. There’s no sense in both of us dying. I’m already dead, anyway. I’m good at it.
And then I just close my eyes and wait for it to all be over.
Forgive me, I say . . . for I have failed.
And that’s when I feel his fingers depress the trigger.