in Featured, Fiction, Short Fiction

I had walked for four hours, starting from the edge of civilization and into this desert of old, of my youth until I had reached the ruins of the forgotten people.

“You’re back,” the forgotten, lonely edifices said to me.

“I am,” I answered back into the soft gentle wind, that carried on it some grains of sands — small but harsh. “Should we do this?” I asked the last remaining legacy of the forgotten people.

There was silence from my old friend. Just what I wanted. It knew me so well.

Years ago, actually, a couple of decades ago, when I had started doing this, I used to get nervous. Maybe, not that first time. That first time had been impulsive. I had been lost in life. Directionless. Ambitionless. But when I had returned the next year and the years after, my stomach had churned, my hand had shook, my eyes had been shut so tight that they had hurt, and the cold metal against my temple had burned. And I would realise, each time, how much I really didn’t want to die, how much there was that I still wanted to do. I would see the next year clearly in my mind — my work, my life my dreams, my hopes, the people in my life — all of it would wash over me, seemingly going on for eternity; all over in the briefest of seconds as I would hear an empty click from the gun in my hand. And I would take in a long breath of the warm, soft, harsh air in. And get to work on my dreams, my hopes.

The nervousness had decreased over the years. I had achieved so much, done so much more than I had ever imagined possible with my life. My hand shook less, and the metal didn’t burn as much any more but my stomach still churned and my dreams still yearned for more.

And that’s why I kept coming back.

I took out a 24-year old bottle of scotch from my bag. That’s how long I had been doing this. I put one bullet into the revolver and turned the cylinder.

I looked up at the ruins of the forgotten people in front of me said my possibly final words into the wind, “I will not be forgotten!”

And I squeezed the trigger.

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