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The 8 O'clock

By Lio Koldryn All Rights Reserved ©

Drama / Thriller

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You'd have ta 'ave been a fool not to seen it. The close' the train got to the station, the close' he got to the tracks. And the close' I got to him. It was only luck that he was too focused on th' train to feel me approaching. What you think I'm supposed to do in a situation like that? Wha's anyone supposed to do? Just the look of him was soundin' out for attention. Filthy beast if you ask me, course no one would tho. It didn' matter.

I already knew this were the eight o' clock. This train weren't making any stops here. He couldn' have made it more obvious if he were covered in landmines. But I continued on anyway. His skull were moving slightly from side to side like he had caught a home run with it and it hadn't stopped rattlin'. Thas' about all I could see, maybe if that kook in the maintenance room had earned his pay. He weren' doing me any favors, here I was squinting like an Asian and I were no more smarter for it.

When I had reached out and placed my hand on his shoulder, there were no sense of accomplishment. There was no superman around to congratulate me. Maybe that's the only reason for it. I were so busy trying to be a hero that I didn't know I was fated to be a victim. Maybe I was the one that needed saving. The smokin, the drinkin, the gamblin, the druggin. They were the four horsemen of my apocalypse but it was Death I was most afraid of. I believed, like an old horse with a gimp leg, that I would be living out the rest of my time on green'a pastures.

When that boy turned around, that's all he was: a boy. I'd seen dogs that were closer to voting age. I couldn' have predicted it and here I was living the proof. There's no telling how he came to this point in his life; where he came convinced that death was the way out. This path had to have started out young but I was in no place to be dreamin' up tales. The train were now a moment from the station.

I think the part that most threw me, apart from the boy himself. Was the smile he flashed as he released my hand. I don' know how he did it but by now the entire weight of my body was held only by gravity and she was fixin' to catch me hard. That boy thought that my death was the way out but he didn' know what those sam' ana bitches are capable of. He looked at me as I fell but it didn' quite hit him that it could have just as easily 'ave been him.

Here I was thinkin' that I'd finally gotten out. Thinkin that after thirty years of trying, they'd finally let me go. I can only hope that he realizes that there is no escapin' now. I feel sorry for him. Be it a year or ten from now. Every year til then, he will live in a shallow stank of his own fear and loneliness. He will lose his lover in a head on crash with a cop car while on foot an' his children to a slow fire. His siblings will fall mysteriously ill and his ma and pa will starve in an old folks home. The only settlin' he'll be able to do is for death. But thas' not all I'll do to him if I crawl off these tracks alive.

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