Chapter 6 - I'm Not Dead YetMature

I had
received a nice, peaceful slumber upon coming back to Earth, courtesy of
Amanda’s kind uncle Paul. Unlike the afterlife, in which my thoughts were
jumbled and were yet to be sorted, my motives were now sorted and planned out
accordingly. I could rest easy knowing that tomorrow would, most likely, go as
I assumed it would.

I slowly
brought myself up to a sitting position on the bed I had been placed on last
night, presumably by Paul. The room I was in contained scarce amounts of
furniture; just a dresser and a small lamp on top of it. A torn-open recliner
rested in the right-hand corner. There were no real walls to speak of, just the
wooden frame of the house.

I couldn’t
help but feel that this room wasn’t finished, and was intended for something
else. Paul didn’t say anything about living with someone or living alone.

The smell of
cooked bread reached my nose, reminding me I had eaten little since arriving on
Earth. I exited the room and walked towards what I assumed was the kitchen.
Upon entering a large doorway, I saw a very small couch that was worn down from
constant use. An old antenna television rested against the wall, which was
colored dark gray and marked with various scars. A small refrigerator was
placed on top of a counter next to a cheap-looking stove. Paul was leaning over
another counter which had a very ancient toaster lying on top of it.

He could
obviously see my surprise as I gazed into his house for the first time. From
what he had told me, I had just made the assumption that he had a pretty
well-furnished and clean residence.

“I uh… just
cooking breakfast” he said weakly, trying to direct my attention from the prime

I nodded,
and thought that he probably didn’t want me prying into his life all too much.
However, he went on.

“I apologize
for not having the most… glamorous place. I don’t think I was all too clear
about my situation”.

I waved a
hand. “Don’t worry, you don’t have to tell me about it. I didn’t exactly have
the best life situation either, but I didn’t talk much about it either for the
sake of everyone else”. I Shrugged and continued. “Not exactly the best
example, but I hope you get the point”.

He looked at
me strangely. “I don’t understand why you would have a bad situation. You
seemed like a pretty decent kid”.

“What you
see on the cover isn’t exactly what happens in the pages” I responded as calmly
as I could.

With a
“humph”, Paul went back to what he was cooking. I decided to sit down on the
couch and occupy myself with watching some programs on the television. I tried
to locate a control, I found it covered with tape and missing a handful of
buttons. I pressed some of them, and the screen began flashing black and white.
I quickly shut the power off and tossed the remote aside.

“Sorry about
that” Paul commented. “That old thing hasn’t worked in years. It’s meant more to
be decoration in a sense”.

He sighed,
and began to start describing to me. “The thing is, I’ve been hitting a lot of
speed bumps in my life as of late. I should’ve been honest from you at the

“Listen, I
don’t have to know. I’ll just-“

“I think you
have a right to. I felt as though I had seemingly lied to you”.

If there is
one thing I had learned from Paul when I had first met him, it was that he had
a policy to be completely honest. Out of the blue, he would sometimes blurt out
how he forgot something, or did this or that, etcetera. I wasn’t sure how he
would live on if he lied once and didn’t fess up to it.

“I used to
be living with a girl here, real nice… but one day she ran off and disappeared.
Afterwards, I lost my job almost instantaneously, and when I applied for more I
was denied with no real reasoning given. Scrapping together all of my money, I
moved into here because the apartment I used to have kicked me out”.

I was
rendered almost speechless. Once again, I had been shown the dark side of the
Earth. The more I thought about it, the more I resented Hunter and all of the
other people that fell into his category. The quicker I got to see Amanda and
my friends, the better I would feel, theoretically.

“You know,
if you need help-“

Paul shook his
head quickly. “I wouldn’t ask you to do such a thing. I’ll get along just fine…
I think”.

I pointed at
him. “You’re only guessing that you’ll achieve what you want to reach. Like I
said earlier, I’m not dead yet. So long as I’m here, I want to make use of
myself, and not just to do what I was originally brought here for”.

shrugged, and turned back to the toaster. He produced a burning hot piece of
bread from it and laid it on a plate. He tossed it over to me, and although I
was caught by surprise, I grabbed the object as I flew in an arc towards me.

“Sorry I
don’t have much as a side dish” Paul said. “All I have is some soda and two
bottles of milk, excluding the bread of course”.

He selected
one of the before-mentioned bottles and repeated his action of throwing the
plate. This object was much easier to catch. I carefully checked the expiration
date before letting the cool liquid trickle down my throat. I took one bite of
the toast and immediately decided to eat no more of it.

He brought
over his own plate of burnt toast and took a seat beside me. Unlike me, he
continued to chew on the disgustingly cooked meal.

I slightly
gestured to the bread, but decided to pull back and ask no more questions.
Paul, however, noticed this.

“I’ve been
trying to conserve what little money I have. I’ve eaten plenty of burnt toast
that I’ve gotten used to it. It’s a habit”.

“Sorry, but
it’s not one I plan to start” I said, pushing the plate a little ways away from

“I don’t
blame you. It’s not exactly the most tasty food dish one could have. It’s just
enough to get me by, which I am much more worried about than an actual healthy

I wasn’t
sure how much I would enjoy my time spent at Paul’s home. He was, of course, a
very kind man, but his place was very messed up and in need of a cleaning.
Maybe he needed my help more than he let on.

I decided to
move on to more important matters so I could get an early start on my missions.

“So you said
earlier that you lived nearby Amanda’s house right?” I asked for clarification.
For all I knew, he might have lied to me about that too.

He nodded,
however, and pointed eastward. “She’s just a few blocks away”.

I stood up
instantly and was about to bolt towards the door when Paul held out a hand and
gave another detail.

“She won’t
be in now. She’s… actually at your funeral… it was scheduled for today. I feel
bad that I’m not there, but I’m busy taking care of the currently living
version of you”.

The proposal
I had asked myself was to go to my own funeral when I was still at the afterlife.
When the idea first entered my mind, I considered it to be incredibly silly,
but now I was thinking it over. As long as Amanda was there and I didn’t make
myself visible to the public, it wouldn’t be too bad.

discerning whether or not I should attend the funeral. As long as she’s there,
I could get in quick and get out just as fast, and no one else besides her
would be aware of my appearance”.

wouldn’t you want to have everyone know you were alive?” Paul questioned,
though it seemed as though he already knew the answer.

“Coming back
to life isn’t exactly a very common occurrence, and I don’t wish to blurt out
to everybody that I had been reborn to do whatever I’m doing. Not only will the
propaganda monsters buzz, but everyone in the world will as well. They could
see my corpse quiet clearly in the coffin, and yet there was another ‘version’
of me still standing around and chatting openly. For all I know, I could get
arrested for being a supposedly fake”.

Paul said no
more on the subject and remained quiet for a little while, tentatively munching
on the lackluster breakfast he had prepared. I really wished I could do
something for him, but the only thing I could think of was donating some money,
of which I had none. No, come to think of it… I might have a little spare cash
in my Earthly bank account. However, withdrawing money from a dead man’s
account by a dead man was something I was unsure how to execute.

“Paul, is
there any way you could transport me to the funeral?” I inquired. Judging by
his current home situation, I shouldn’t have asked.

“I had to
sell my car to give me enough bucks to keep me going. All I need is a bike to
get places, though I’ll probably end up selling that eventually as well…”

I thought of
other options. “So could I use your bike then?”

“I put it in
storage. I don’t need it all too much at the time” Paul replied.

“Would I
make it there in time if I started walking?”

“If you
started now you could. It’s being held over at that church in the township

He stood up
and continued. “However, I don’t want you walking on your lonesome. This
neighborhood isn’t the best, you should know. I’d feel better if I tagged along
to make sure you arrived safely”.

 “You don’t have to worry about me. I can take
care of myself” I replied. I said this mainly because I would rather be on my
own at this point.

Paul denied
this. “You should still be with someone. I don’t know much about why you are
here, but I’m guessing that if someone witnesses you alive, there will be a big
controversy most likely. And if you want to be invisible, you need help”.

I already
had thought of something that could overcome this obstacle. “You’re pretty
tall… do you have any large black coats, or just some other large coat that
could cloak me with relative ease?”

“I have an
old black trench coat in the closet if that’s what you’re looking for” Paul
said, pointing down the hallway.

I nodded,
satisfied. “Any hats?”

should be one hanging up on the doorknob”.

So far it
would appear as though I had everything I needed to remain away from the public
eye. While wearing such clothes would no doubt stand out in the open, they
wouldn’t look too much out of place when put at the scenery of a funeral.

I walked
over to the before-mentioned closet and opened up to locate the coat. It was
large enough to fit me and large enough to hide most of my facial features.
That coupled with the hat that had been resting on the doorknob and I appeared
to be a completely different individual.

Paul looked
me over as I walked back into the room which served as a sorry excuse for a
living space and kitchen.

“I must say,
I barely recognized you myself” he commented. “But are you really sure you can
do this on your lonesome? You’ll look pretty awkward when walking alongside

“I remember
that church. There’s a quick back path I’ll take to get their faster” I said.
When I needed to get something fast, I just used the road that had been closed
down a few years before. It was hardly policed, and following it took me right
to the middle of the square.

“I guess I
should lay off. You’re a good kid Jordan… be careful out there. And please, try
to make Amanda feel better. I don’t want to see her fall down to this. I’ve
heard stories of so many teenagers that commit suicide over this stuff, and-“

interrupted Paul, holding up a hand. “You don’t need to worry, Paul. She’ll be
fine… I…”

Before I
said any more about my true relationship with Amanda, I swiftly muttered that I
had to go and dashed out of the door. I had never gotten so close to confessing
my secrets to a near-stranger before, and I wasn’t prepared to. I reminded
myself to bite my tongue for future reference.

I looked
around the neighborhood with quick turn of my head and located an area I could
use to access the closed road to get to the church. I hoped that I wouldn’t be
late on my passage towards the funeral. Know that I thought about it, that
sounded incredibly odd; a walking corpse witnessing his own funeral. Now that
is interesting indeed.

In a sense,
I felt as though I was on my way to the closure my life desired, however I
dismissed this thought as soon as it arrived. I didn’t want to get too hung up
over my death for too long; as soon as Hunter was taken care of, I would be
able to put all of that behind me.

I was moving
as fast as I could, taking the least amount of highly populated sidewalks and
roadways. In my current disguise, I did look unlike the average individual as
Paul had pointed out.

The closed
road opened up before me, and I wasted no time to enter it. Sometimes, there
were some police officers stationed in the forest watching out for suspicious
activity, but I saw no such people present.

The road had
been closed due to a large sinkhole that had occurred in the middle of it just
a few years ago. The giant gap was still present, water dripping down from the
edge of it. The asphalt path had since been taken over by nature; giant trees
loomed overhead and vines shot across, warning you to be careful or trip.

In the
distance, I could slightly hear the graceful melody of a grand piano. Its tune
was quiet depressing. I figured that I was close to my destination. Still
worrying on the off chance I would be late, I quickened my already fast pace.

Nature had
completely covered the exit of the road, and I was forced to brush many
outstanding tree limbs out of my face as I persevered towards the ongoing
music. Upon leaving the abandoned path, I saw what looked like a sea of bodies.
I was immediately thunderstruck as to how many people were gathering around the
church which laid before me. I had, or at least I thought, no friends
whatsoever. I guessed these must all be friends of my parents.

I was
cautious entering the crowd of civilians; I didn’t want to come in too fast and
attract too much attention. If I came in gradually, I wouldn’t be as obvious.
After taking a few steps, I had crossed the street. I could slightly see a
small open tent-like object near the end of all of these men and woman. Some of
their heads were bowed down, and some others were crying. I started to rethink
foraying into the setting of a funeral, and not just any one, but my funeral.

I soon
reached the front of the crowd where my casket was positioned. I felt sick; my
body was in there, my actual life was in there. From what I could hear,
however, the funeral was almost over.

The piano
player played another song as my old life was slowly released into a large hole
in the ground. I read the gravestone that was beside it; Jordan Dikes,
September 7th 1995 – February 12th 2012. I was only
sixteen… it was just fucking unfair.

After what
appeared to be an eternity to me, my body was finally lowered into the hole.
Slowly everybody began to disperse from the scene, some of them quicker than
others. There were a few individuals that stayed behind from the massive
movement of people. I recognized Amanda Hundson’s dress from when I saw it back
in the afterlife. She was still in the midst of a few other mourning populaces
around her, so I was unsure how to approach her. My disguise might be easily

The roar of
cars grew louder and louder until just as it came it left. Now only Amanda and
a few close friends of my parents were standing in front of the hole. The piano
had already been pulled away into the church and the piano player and the
priest that had given the final words went along with it. Now I felt as though
I could see her now.

Amanda began
to walk away, her face stained with tears. I felt incredibly sorry for her,
having to go through a crazy situation at a young age. However, I wasn’t dead
yet, and I felt as though if I could just get a few days with her, I could help
her get over this depression, and we would both have a great time.

She looked
up at me as she passed by, and before I could turn around to greet her, she
walked back. From the look in her eyes, she had recognized me immediately
through my disguise. I swallowed, unsure what to say at this point. Before I
could open my lips and speak, Amanda embraced me tightly and began crying into
my coat. I held her closely as well, having seemingly forgotten her company
when I was back in the afterlife.

backed away and looked me over again. She wiped the tears away and hugged me

“I can’t
believe it… I can’t…” she managed to say through her sobs.

“It’s good
to see you too, Amanda”.

She backed
off once again and asked the question I had already prepared to answer.

“How are you
here? I thought you were… gone…”

“I’m not
dead yet… that’s the short explanation”.

She cocked
her head slightly, asking for a better answer I assumed.

“I was allowed
to come back to Earth due to a blessing that is wearing off. I have to renew
this blessing… but I wanted to see you first”.

I let go one
tear, but I managed to hold any more back. “I… I thought I would never see you

“I didn’t
imagine I would see you again either…” she responded weakly.

After our
brief conversation, we didn’t have much to say. Eventually, she grabbed my hand
and began to guide me in the direction of her own parents.

“You should
come see them, you’re parents are there too, they-“

I cut her
off. “Amanda, I shouldn’t even be doing what I am right now. I was instructed
to go to a church and renew a blessing. I chose to use at least one of my days
to see you. My mission is top secret… and I don’t want everyone to know”.

She looked
at me curiously, then nodded slowly. She obviously didn’t completely understand
my reasoning, which wasn’t unusual. Under normal circumstances, I would have
told my parents and probably everyone I knew I was alive for a week, but I was
supposed to keep quiet.

This whole
conversation, come to think of it, seemed very awkward and oddly romantic. I
began to wish we could begin to talk about the subjects we always had before
the car accident. It had all began with Hunter, and from the looks of it, it
will end with him as well.

“So where…
have you been then? Just… gone?” she asked me.

I was unsure
whether or not I should reveal too much about the afterlife. “Well, I was…
somewhere. You don’t just black out and never wake up”.

“Is there
anything to do… there?”

“There are
plenty of nice people around. They all reminded me of you… and how I dreamed
the Earth to be”.

discussion of the afterlife was ended briefly by the entrance of Amanda’s
parents. Fearing my secrecy, I walked away at a hurried pace before they could
find me out. However, Amanda came running back towards me.

“I just
asked them if I could come with you” she said. “If it’s okay with you, I’m

I wasn’t
surprised by her parent’s decision. They had always been generous and
quick-to-trust folks.

“Well, I
have no problem with it. But I don’t want to be out in the open too much, so
don’t expect this to be too exciting”.

She pointed
out the blessing I had mentioned. “You said you had a task to carry out. I can
help if you need it”.

I shrugged.
“That’s the thing; I don’t know if I’ll need help or not. So far, I only know
that I have to go to a church that’s being harassed by anti-religious

“I’ve heard
of that place. It’s just before the county borders”.

“I know
where it’s located, but getting in is what I need to figure out. I have no idea
since I’ve never set foot to that area of the county”.

“If you want
to be sneaky, you could always jump in from the roof” she suggested. Yet again
I had someone else advise me that.

“I have
absolutely no idea how I could possibly pull that off” I said. “I’m not James
Bond, Amanda”.

“I’d like to
think you were” she joked.

I sighed.
“There’s only one James Bond; Sean Connery. I can’t even be sarcastic about
there being a different actor that could pull it off”.

“You always
get so serious about some things, you know?” she laughed.

Amanda and I
progressed down to the abandoned road I had used to reach her, and our
conversation went on as it always had for all of the years we had been friends.
This is all I had wanted from the beginning I realized; just someone nice to
talk to for a few days, even if I didn’t know them too well. To be with
possibly the one person I couldn’t live without for a week… was exactly…
exactly… what I needed. No more evil bothering me, just Amanda and I talking
and talking like we would never stop.

We soon came
upon a fork in the road which we lead me back to Paul’s house, though I was so
preoccupied with Amanda that I hardly noticed this. I guided her down the
street and we were close to Paul’s house when I wished I could teleport like I
could in the afterlife.

I recognized
Hunter’s face instantly. He and his friends were riding bikes in the middle of
the road, an action they frequented to be ‘cool’ I assume. Some of his other
friends were by his side, neither of them the mimicking buffoons I had gotten
used to seeing. One of them, I knew, was dead, and the other was still

His normally
morbid smell floated over our heads; a combination of his refusal to bathe and
be in any sense clean, and his ample usage of harmful chemicals. In the slot in
his bicycle in which a water bottle would usually be present, a half-empty beer
bottle rested.

I prayed
that they wouldn’t give us any trouble, but I knew it was hopeless; he never
could resist picking on whoever he saw that he assumed was lesser than him.
Their bikes were already on a course towards our position. I clenched my fists,
ready to lash out at moment’s notice.

“Look at
this, that brooding bitch again!” Hunter laughed, pointing towards Amanda.

There was no
way Hunter would dare step towards Amanda. I couldn’t resist shouting back.

bullshitting if you’re going to get on her case” I retorted, my feet already
locked in a fighting stance my father had taught me.

Hunter was
taken aback by my sudden outburst, but that didn’t stop him from continuing
trying to torment us.

“And where’d
you come from, some stupid old eighties movie? Get outta here”.

His humor
was as dry as it had always been. “Still the same old as you’ve always been I
see, Hunter”. I tried to make my words sound as icily as they could.

smiled and was just about to say something in return when something held him
back. His mouth fell open and he quickly jumped onto his bicycle.

fucking hell!” he shouted, already pedaling away from me. His shocked friends
slowly tagged behind in his wake. Was it a possibility that he had figured out
my true identity? It surely seemed as though I had left a large impression on

“Thank you…
for beating him off” Amanda commented. “It’s sick, seeing him… he should be in

reminded me of the court case. “He won the court case!? You’ve got to be-“

She shook
her head before I got into a rant. “No, no… but his family delayed it somehow…
it just pisses me off…” It was a rarity to hear Amanda use a curse word.

“Has he been
doing this to you… bothering you?” I inquired, trying to get more information
on Hunter. If I was going to do something to him, I wanted to make sure all of
my hate went into my actions.

“Ever since
you died… he was… bragging about it! Like it was something to be proud of!
Every… every day… he just made fun of me, you, and anyone else he considered…
weak… and… it’s just… so hard to believe people are like that!”

“He has no
right to do that… someone needs to do something about him, or I swear… I will…
bothering me I have always dealt with… but if he’s moved on to you… I won’t
stand for it”.

I gestured
forward, wishing to bring about a different subject. “We’re almost to Paul’s
house… no sense standing here. Let’s get moving”.

Amanda and I
said little after the encounter with Hunter, most likely due to the two of use
thinking the same things; Hunter is an asshole, he should be in jail, why are
people in the world like this, and so on. We had always had the same thoughts,
and especially when Hunter was involved.

To know that
he was teasing Amanda as he had done to me was too much. People like her didn’t
deserve the wrong things they receive. If Hunter wanted to get as personal as
he wanted, I’ll be sure to change that.

I remembered
that I had to fight off a gang of Hunter’s friends once, and one of them had carried
a gun with him. It was more for show-off, and contained little if any
ammunition. In the group’s haste to run off once the teachers started emerging
outside to see what was happening, the gun was buried behind the front of the
school, a detail I had kept noted in my mind. The more I thought about it, the
more I could see myself standing in front of Hunter with the gun pointed
straight at his heart… and pulling the trigger.

We entered
the front door of Paul’s household to complete silence. I tried to maybe seek
out some hidden, nearly non-existent sounds; and then I heard the static of the
television set. Amanda and I turned the corner and saw Paul lying down on the
couch. He appeared to be in a heavy slumber.

I motioned
to just tip-toe past him and not to make much of a sound, but as soon as we
attempted this, Paul shot upward to a sitting position, breathing heavily. He
looked around and noticed our presence.

“Oh… you…
bad dream… hi… when did you get here?” he asked, though the jumble of words he
spewed out could hardly be considered such.

I pointed
back towards the door. “We just walked in… is Amanda allowed to stay?” I asked

He nodded, a
smile appearing on his face. “I couldn’t possibly refuse the company of my
favorite teenager”.

He looked
over at me. “Sorry, you’re out of luck!”

The three of
us laughed at his joke. Thankfully, it would seem that Amanda was already
feeling much better. I had observed how her mood changed gradually over our
walk, and I doubted she would ever feel so down once again.

“I hope
you’re not hungry; as Jordan knows, I just have bread and some soda. I finished
off the last of the milk, sorry” Paul informed us.

Amanda and I
shrugged almost simultaneously.

He nodded.
“I can assure you, however, we will have some half-decent food soon; I’ve
gotten some good offers on some old possessions I’m selling on eBay. If I get
the amount of money I hope I’ll get, I’ll be able to break that ugly burnt
toast habit. I’ve always been told, and I’ve always said, it takes more than
twenty days to start a habit, and more than twenty days to break one”.

“How true” I
commented. I always liked to hear the philosophies and quotes of others.

Paul pointed
down the hallway at the end of the room.

“Just one
bedroom, which means you kids are gonna have to share or one of you sleep on
the floor. No naughty things in there!”

I laughed
and opened my mouth wide. “Paul!”

Amanda had
gotten a little redder. “Little too far, Paul” she replied as calmly as she
could manage.

He raised
his hands in a defensive gesture. “Sorry, sometimes I just can’t help myself.
It’s been a habit of mine for quite some time”.

“Bite your
lip for more than twenty days” I suggested. With a small chuckle, Paul rested
back on the couch.

“I apologize
for asking, but could you guys not stay in this room? I didn’t get much sleep
last night, so I’d prefer to take a little nap if you don’t mind”.

Amanda and I
looked at each other and nodded. “We’re fine with it” she said.

Paul smiled,
then almost instantly fell back asleep. At first, we were unsure if we could
manage to get past him this time, but eventually we began to move at an even
slower tip-toe pace than before as we tried to get over to the bedroom. I
didn’t know if Paul had anything that could occupy us, so I guess I’d have to
do a little investigating.

obviously had not seen the interior of Paul’s household for a while, or even

“I… uh… have
never seen this before” she said, obviously caught off-guard by the appearance
of the room. Would Paul mind if I informed her on his current life situation, I
was not sure. I guessed that he would eventually tell her himself anyway due to
his honesty policy.

“Paul’s just
been having some… problems in life… but he said not to worry” I added before
Amanda could object.

“Last time I
heard he was living with a nice girl and had a nice job… and you’re saying… or
at least suggesting that… he lost it all?” she questioned me.

I swallowed,
then nodded slowly.

In response,
Amanda sighed and leaned against the wall. “I don’t think we’ll ever be away
from the evil of the world. Good will never prevail like it’s always been told
it does. Villains will just prosper like they always have”.

I stood by
her side. “I think the same way… but when I’m with you, I tend to forget”.

She looked
up and smiled. Before I knew it, the two of us were kissing, both of us holding
each other closely. I never wanted to leave her… I never wanted her to leave
me… I just wanted to remain her as long as I could.

After a
long, beautiful eternity, we stopped kissing but we still both hugged each

“I think
this is how life should be” I said. She rested her head on my shoulder.

“If only it
was” she commented.

“We can make
it so!” I said. “I’d like to believe… I’d like to just… break away from the
world. The two of us… just the two of us left in the world… and with all of our
friends. We couldn’t go wrong, could we? We’d be living the very first perfect

leaned closer and began to kiss me once more. For all I knew, I had already
constructed the world I had just spoken of, but I refused to live in it. The
key was just to believe in it… no matter how cheesy that sounded.

We stood for
quite some time embracing each other, neither once of us wishing to let go. If
we had all of the time in the world, I’d be willing to bet we would stay here
forever, in this very spot.

however, we broke apart, and our natural teenage boredom set in.

“What do you
want to do?” she asked me.

I shrugged.
“I always found that writing clears the mind, but that’s not exactly an activity
for two people”.

She nodded,
agreeing with my point, but suddenly she began shaking her head.

“It could be
a group thing! You were making some other story when… before the… anyways, you
carried it with you wherever you went. Do you, by any chance, still have it?”

I shook my
head at first, but I suddenly felt a presence in my pocket. I reached down into
it, and felt a large amount of papers stacked on top of each other. I would
never be able to recreate the look of surprise I had when I found the papers that
made up my story in my hand! It seemed as though they had just magically
appeared! Instinctively, I looked up to the skies. Maybe somebody up in the
afterlife I sent these sheets to me, and I was very grateful of their present.

“I guess you
were wrong then” Amanda said, who was almost as surprised as I was.

“I am… not
sure how these got here” I said in awe, looking the papers over. They were,
undoubtedly, crafted from my own hand. I reviewed them, memories of working on
them revealing to my mind. It seemed to have been forever since I had picked up
these particular sheets.

“It’s about
that band of thieves’ plot you had, isn’t it?” Amanda asked for confirmation.

“How would
you know-“

She cut me
off. “There was one day when you left the papers behind in your previous class.
When I caught up to you, I just slipped them into one of your folders… but
before then, I couldn’t resist looking them over. You have a talent few people
could hope to possess”.

I think I
might have blushed slightly. “Thanks… I never thought I was that good”.

“That’s as
modest as you get, saying everything you do is a degree worse than what it
actually is” she said, slightly laughing.

It was true,
of course; I had always been sort of a perfectionist when it came to writing. I
once recreated a 20-page essay due to the fact I had missed one point on it.
The point, however, did bring me up a letter grade, so there was some
justification behind it.

a ballpoint pen was resting on the floor. I rushed over and picked it up, my
hands shaking slightly. I always got excited when it came to writing; that
wonderful feeling of having words sprout out of your pen just makes me feel
something… amazing. It’s hard to describe I must admit.

I sat down
on the bed, Amanda taking a seat next to me. I dragged a large block that was
next to the bed over towards me and laid the papers down on it. This would
serve as a makeshift writing desk; it would do for now.

leaned over my shoulder. “Where’d you leave off exactly?”

I thought
back to the last time I continued the story. “The thieves had just broken out
of the treasury in which the corrupt police chief, Chief Roland, set up a trap
in. He was able to capture one of the thieves, but the remaining ones are
planning to break him out”.

She cocked
her head slightly to one side. “That is, in a way, like your current situation.
Consider this blessing you told me about the captured thief, Roland the
anti-religious protestors, and the thieves as you”.

I raised an
eyebrow. “I never would have thought of it that way. Speaking of which, do you
have any other ideas on how to get inside that structure?”

“As I said”
she replied, “try to climb on the roof”.

I sighed.
“I’m a little tired of that plan… I’d have to see the building first”.

“It’s pretty
small” Amanda educated me. “Not wide, not tall. It shouldn’t be too hard to
approach or enter”.

the protestors” I reminded her.

“With the
right convincing, any aggressive protestor will back off of a case”.

“I was
thinking about saying something… or at least scouting before doing so… but what
would I tell them?”

“You’ve got
a lot of questions for someone who should know what they’re doing” Amanda
pointed out half-jokingly.

I nodded.
“You’re right. I should have done my research, or I should at least do some
before shouting out and looking about for courses of action when I don’t know
how I’d execute them”.

After a
brief moment of silence, Amanda brought back the subject of the story.

going back to your book… why don’t the two of us work on it? For all you know,
I might be able to offer some good insight”.

I shrugged.
“We could always give it a try. Just try not to be too much of a backseat
driver” I instructed her half-jokingly.

She leaned
over next to me to get a better look at the pages. “So you left them when they
were planning to break one of their comrades out of prison. What happens now?”

I took a
deep breath and brought down the pen, the words already flowing smoothly onto
the paper, my thoughts transferred into my hands which in turn committed the
action. As I continued, I began to narrate what was currently happening.

stood up in the center of the room. Despite his average height, he was able to
deter the attention of the group towards himself. With all eyes on him, he
began to reveal the plan he had devised. ‘To break into a prison is no easy
deed to carry out, gentlemen, but with the right effort it is possible’ he
began. ‘We already have obtained armor from Imperial officials. Disguising
ourselves with the uniforms and clever works of makeup, getting to the interior
of the structure will be made relatively simple’”.

“Many of the
men began to object to Fayman’s plan almost instantly after he delivered the
first part of it. ‘They know our faces well enough to stop us at the front gate,
with heavy makeup or not’ Peter voiced the general opinion of the group.
Fayman, however, was not offset by the comment”.

“How do you
do that so easily?” Amanda said in amazement. “Sorry for interrupting… but I
just don’t see how it’s humanly possible for someone to write that much so

I told her
my thoughts on talents. “Some people can play instruments. Some people can
sing. Some people can paint, and others can draw. Some people can play sports
well. Talents come in different forms, and writing is one of them. It’s just
like how famous guitarists can commit crazy guitar riffs, and how famous
singers can hit incredibly high notes. In writing, people can make full books
in just days, weeks”.

I went on.
“Fayman doubted that his plan could fail. It had always been a very outstanding
character trait of him; being ignorant to other ideas and criticisms. ‘You
don’t know how much disguise material we have at our command. We’ll be able to
cloak ourselves just fine. Maybe we can even add some other details such as
facial hair’. The others argued that they hadn’t obtained supplies in weeks, or
had a good raid. There was less in stock than Fayman believed”.

“As the
night droned on without a plausible plan of action in sight, the thieves began
to get lone wolf ideas. ‘You can’t do such a good job, but I reckon I could’
Keller spoke up. Many other individuals made the same claims as Keller, and
soon it seemed as though the order of the meeting had been dismissed. ‘All that
we have planned so far’ the wise Garmur said, speaking over all other voices,
‘is to go in by our lonesome and pray for the best? We won’t get far initiating
thirteen separate strategies at once’”.

Even with
Garmur’s saying, nothing could possibly discourage the thieves at this point.
Slowly, they all began to disperse. All but Clarence and Julia remained. Julia
had recently been reported as being in league with the thieves, and someone
like her was not prepared for such a lifestyle”.

“’I am not
sure what to do now’ Julia said, fear in her voice, ‘Where do we go, what do we

replied as calmly as he could. ‘I’m sure that Keller and the others will turn
around at some point. In the meantime, with all of the Imperials breathing down
our necks, it’s vital to keep your head low. Change your appearance or your
clothing, or both. The only alternative is to just live here, and this is only
a small wooden lodge’”

“’I’d rather
stay here than change myself’ Julia responded. With her mind made up, she
quietly walked off into a corner in which a bed rested. She fell back on to it
and said nothing more. Clarence, sensing that she must likely did not wish to
make conversation, opened the door and walked out into the night”.

Soon, like
in the story, the darkness of the night came on to us. Amanda stayed with me
for quite a while, but she soon told me she desired to sleep and laid back on
the bed. I continued with my writing, however, until finally the clock that was
lazily hung on the wall was showing 2:00.

I huddled on
the floor and tried my best to go to sleep, but I found such antics futile. I
heard Paul still sleeping in the living room; he had a slight snore. My only
other option was to gather some covers or climb into the most awkward situation
I could imagine myself in.

Choosing the
less awkward option, I walked out of the room and opened up a closet. I was
lucky to locate some spare blankets in there. I gathered up a few of them and
gathered them together on the floor. I realized that, as I did this, my first
day on Earth had come to an end. I also realized that I had accomplished
nothing that pertained to my mission. However, I had accomplished to find
Amanda, and hopefully boost her spirits. The feeling of her lips on mine was a
feeling I had long awaited for. In reality… I…

complicated. I’ll just stop wasting time and try and get some rest.

The End

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