The Man Who Reaches

This is what happened when I was on a "character kick" for a vigilante I wrote/created, called the Artist, and was tasked with coming up with a repeating theme/motiff/phrase. Some reason, I enjoy it.

    He’s reaching.  His arms are at his sides.

    He’s still reaching.
    Specs.  From high atop the ledge he now occupies, the peope, his people, his charges, appear nigh insignificant.

    He knows better.

    They all have names.  Lives.  Families.  Aspirations.  Jobs.  Dreams.  Fears.  Each one unique, different, special, miraculous.

    He’s reaching.

    A breeze caresses his face like loving fingertips, and though it is as if Heaven itself was attempting to rescue him from his solemn thoughts, his head drops, his eyes shut.

    He’s reaching.

    The man’s eyes open, the cobalt blue windows contrasting the hue of the early night.  The tint of the street lights gives the sky an unearthly glow.

    Though he’s still looking towards the street, he’s seeing them.  A hallway, white walls painted red with no paint, a small body.  A body he’s known since it was born, looking completely alien.

    She isn’t moving.

    And her.  Still moving, her lips, the lips he kisses, screaming his name.  Her eyes, the eyes he falls asleep looking into, searching his, screaming even louder than the words.

    She’s reaching for him.

    He’s reaching for her.

    Movements of others.  Light.

    She isn’t moving.

    He’s still reaching.

    He’s back in the present, no longer seeing.  A name is resonating.  Her name.  Naomi.  He failed.  He’s reaching.

    His eyes open.  Naomi.

    His eyes close.  Naomi. 

    His eyes open.  Other names.

    Jessica White, 25.  Two days before her wedding.  Shot and raped.  Or raped and shot.

    Marvin Lupin, 72.  Flew to America from France to see the birth of his first grandchild.  Never made it to the hospital.

    He closes his eyes.

    He’s reaching.

    Nick Rhodes, 13.  Kidnapped, found dead in an abandoned basement.

    Stephen Shelton, 19.  Overdose.  His dealer hasn’t been found.

    Daniel Moore, 43.  Bethany Williams, 24.  Thomas Wittenburg, 34, and Janey Wittenburg, 6.  Xaiver Holmes, 17.  Ben McGuire, 59.  Arthur Jones, 37.  Haley Michaels, 23.  Tammy Levesque, 30.  Terrance, Jill, Gavin, Sandra and Brooke Burton, various, a family.  They’re still searching for more bodies, still identifying the 126 found.  Killed in a bombing by… him.  He did it, but the man, the man who reaches, he failed.

    He’s reaching.

    Sara Powell, 21.  James Leeroy, 63.  Alex Johnathan-Davis, 20.  Walter Craig, 41.  Matthew Bourne, 59.  Kyle Showalter, 21.  Lynn Davis.  Frank Donahue.  Tracy Matthews.  Morgan Allan.  Daniel Johannsen, Michael Cox, Chris Wood, Shantel Ludlum, Marshall Goyer, Doug Kennedy Mushuma El-Trikit Allison Melsha Mary Tim Austin Shawn Scott Adam Robbert Kelly Amanda Lisa Harry Nicholai Carlos John Parker Wanda Bruce Joseph Harley Peter Margerie Gwen-

    He opens his eyes.

    He’s reaching.

    The man fixes the blue mask that hides his face, but not his regret.  He smiles falsely for that, but his eyes give it away.  His grip on his sword tightens.  He prepares the hook, and steps off the balcony.

    He falls.
    And he reaches.

The End

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