Learning To Say Goodbye

An American police officer from New York is caught off guard by a blinding light, and his daughter - who's previously deceased - standing in his path. But, it's not his daughter. It's a guardian angel, who's sent to look over him before his impending death, making sure he doesn't alter the course of anyone else's life.

He must learn to accept his young daughter's death, and to accept his own.

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1. Learning to Say Goodbye

As he walked through the ancient remnants of the derelict warehouse, the stench of blood fled and stained his nostrils, as if his body was already fully aware that the smell wouldn't be disappearing - even as he carefully forged deeper into the building.

                A light almost blinded him. Amongst the darkness that was the building, it was an unhealthy change. He was careful, moving around the calloused corner. But he saw her.

             'Gemma?' she turned quickly, almost startled. He asked again, 'Gemma?' she finally replied, but an older - yet young still - Scottish accent came bubbling out.

'Sorry. Have to ask. Did you lose anyone, like, to death recently?' he was stunned. It certainly looked like Gemma. It wasn't though. He knew that deep down. 'Please. You need to answer me. Please.' the voice spoke again.

'Why?'

'Sorry?'

'Why do you need to know? Why is it so important to you?'

'Just please answer me. If you can answer me, I can answer you.' she was pleading. But he didn't know why. It looked like his daughter, his Gemma. But it wasn't her, he somehow knew that. There was something in her eyes that was different, almost metallic and robotic.

'Yes.' he finally answered her, highly unenthusiastically.

'Pardon?' the voice came fumbling out, startled slightly by the quick cut of silence.

'I lost my daughter a few months ago. She was... she was only very young. Seven. Car crash.' Her face relaxed almost, reason and explanation crossing her small, elegant features. She opened her mouth to communicate, but it was as if her tongue was caught between logic and free will. She quickly made up her mind, and the clouded thoughts became clear to her. 

'You see her, don't you? Your daughter. As... me?' he didn't answer, but the glint in his eye was answer enough for her. 'I... Ok, so this is going to sound ludicrous. You need to realise that before I even begin. But you also need to realise that I'm going to be very important to you, so you'll need to listen. Please, don't go nuts.' His face was entirely unimpressed. 'So... I'm your... Guardian Angel. Ok. So I realise you may be thinking that I'm crazy, maybe you've even considered checking the news for a psychotic break or something... But... I am. I actually am.' 

                 His mind was swirling, although something in him was intrigued. Cautious albeit, but intrigued nonetheless. He needed to know more from this person. He was surprised that he was so interested, so accepting of this strange occurrence. 'Why are you here?' he questioned - surprising himself by the outburst.

'So... you need to realise that something is going to happen. Guardian Angels only come in to people's lives shortly before their death.' she stopped abruptly. Realising her outburst had released his news. 'Sorry. I... I wasn't supposed to do it that way I don't think.' 

'What do you mean you 'don't think'? Haven't you done this before?' he was angry - to an extent. He was still dealing with the concept of death waiting quietly around the corner. 

'I'm new to this. I..'

'New?! What the hell does that mean?' 

'I... I just recently died.' and now he felt odd. Not quite angry any more, but more embarrassed. 

'I'm sorry.' he felt silly telling her this but, to him he'd forgotten. All about her being his Guardian Angel. So for a minute at least, his sympathy was with her, not with himself. But suddenly, he came back to himself, to his impending death sentence. 

'Wait. So I'm supposed to die?' she sighed slightly. It was small, and faint - had he blinked or moved, he wouldn't have heard it.

'Yes. Essentially.' 

'Ok. When?' he was adamant to know, seeing as it was inevitable.

'I can't... You're not allowed to know. I can't tell you.' 

                       His anger became the best of him, and his fist clenched to a pale, white state. 'What do you mean, I don't get to know? I don't get to know how I die?! Are there no liberties in this world?!' 

'You can't know. If you knew, you might try and change your path, prevent your death. It could alter the course of history. It could cause the death of someone else - someone who wasn't supposed to die. Someone who didn't have a chance. I'm sorry.' she couldn't be more apologetic. She tried, but it would have been impossible. 

'How is that fair?!' his anger had burst.

'It's not. It never is. We don't get to know when we die, or how or even why. We just get to know that we do. That could make someone the most cynical person - but we need to deal with it. It sucks. Of course it does - but we can't do anything about it. Some twisted person somewhere wanted it this way - so that we are constantly nervous. But there's nothing we can do. Not one single thing. Because doing something could drastically alter history. Barack Obama could never have been born, Twilight could have been popular. Life as we know it could be ruined.'

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