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Chapter 16: Anton Dales

I tapped my scythe, the familiar door appeared in front of us. Rosalie slipped my jacket on, I held my hand out. Rosalie wrapped her fingers into mine and we stepped into the doorway. The raven gripped my shoulder, refusing to leave. I could feel my heart beat fast as I waited for my vision to clear.

Would Rosalie survive the doorway?

She is still human, and they should not be able to. But she could still see me even though she had not passed. So, I held hope that my plan would work. Finally, after a period that seemed to be endless. My eyes were starting to clear, I could feel her hand still wrapped on mine. I looked to my left and seen her face smiling at me in excitement, my plan had left her in one piece. I was relieved to see her pretty face staring back at me.

I could hear the sirens approaching. I looked at Rosalie and asked her to remain here, I did not want her to see any graphic scenes. I walked to where a blanket lay on the road, a pale face was the only uncovered. The face was heavily grazed, a bike lay in the gutter and it looked crushed. A truck was pulled to the side. I would guess that the poor cyclist had been in a blind spot. His soul was quick to lift and I placed it next to me. He was pale with hair that was almost white and a very colourful sport suit on. He looked puzzled as he stared down at his body.

His memories flooded my mind before I had time for the speech. Anton Dales, fifty-six years old. He was divorced and living his life keeping fit and healthy. The truck had clipped him and caused him to lose his balance. The result was that he ended up hitting his head in just the right spot. A pool of blood was seeping from the wound.

I stare into the lake, waiting for the fish to bite. My dad has a hand on my shoulder, we are in our favorite spot. Our most treasured times of our father and son weekends, no sisters or nagging mothers. Just the silence of the nature surrounding us, the weeds waving as we throw our lines into the water causing ripples. The fish are not entirely interested in biting, but that is okay. We would set the camp up with two sleeping bags in a tent. A fire to cook our food and the hungry scavengers of the forest would scatter in the bushes around us.

I walk up to my front door, I push my key and unlock the door. My small sister runs up giggling, her latest drawing on my mother’s favorite feature bright yellow feature wall. I just smiled down at her, walking to my bedroom and throwing my bag down.

I start my homework, attempting to do all my questions without yelling for help. The afternoon passing by as the day grows darker. The pale sky is turning and giving in to the sleep it must so desperately need. The stars are waking up and glowing that comforting light. My mother is serving us dinner and we are sent to shower then bed. Ready for another day.

I find myself at the local pub, pouring the cool liquid down my throat. I wondered how I got here, but I reminded myself it was my fault. I would not give up this cool forgiving liquid. My mind would go numb, I would stumble aimlessly but I loved it. I would wink at the ladies who serve me, pat their breasts and they would huff at me.

My wife has cleared my apartment, with only a note left on the counter. Our child would be remaining with her and I would not be allowed to see them unless I ‘I sort myself out’. I crumpled the note up and threw it to the floor in dismay. I marched myself to my local pub and drowned myself. That is how I got here, it is my fault. My thoughts swirled in my head until I pass out, somehow, I found myself in the bed of a stranger. Yet I am not attracted to her, she is just another distraction. Nothing appeals to me anymore.

I made myself a new goal, I would sober up for our child. I treated myself to a membership at the gym, I brought myself a bike. I threw myself into the training, gunning for a healthy body. I shunned the golden liquid that made me numb in the past. I walked past that pub, I ignored the cries in my mind. I spent months on myself, I turned my life around and I began to enjoy it. Slowly figuring out where I had gone wrong.

A deep horn boomed a short distance away before an immense pain burned through me and then I fell into the dark.

I pulled myself out of Anton’s memories, I sighed. I caught his soul and stood him next to me. He looked around in confusion. I explained I am The Reaper. I gave him that speech, the one that I had never changed or faltered. It is giving off the same calm to his confusion as he accepted his death. I walked him to Rosalie and tapped my scythe. The doorway appeared and the three of us walked through it.

We were met with a low rumbling growl.

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