Hereafter

Sometimes, you have to die before you can live.

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1. Prologue

         I take a shaky breath. I'm nervous, but ready.

         "Would it hurt?" I ask myself.

         "It already hurts," the voice in my head replies.

        "Will it help?" I ask again, fighting as hard as I can to be rational. But, I'm tired of fighting...

         "Nothing else has ever helped. This is the only choice we have left."

        "One jump," we agree. "One jump, and it will all be over."

        "I'm ready," I decide aloud, no longer filled with nerves or uncertainty. Opening my eyes, I look down at the thunderous waves splashing at the sharp rocks below the bridge I stand on. There are rails to keep people from falling, but they serve no purpose from behind. The dark water below is nothing but beautiful, and quite welcoming as it splashes higher and higher up the wall, as if rising to meet me. Arms open wide, the sea is eager to greet me, to have me join its underwater realm for all eternity. The sight doesn't faze me, but relaxes me. I'm filled with an almost joy, and for the first time in awhile, I could almost remember what the emotion felt like. I close my eyes, welcoming the feeling of peace, knowing that this is exactly where I should be. I slide one foot off the ledge, and the rest of my body goes down with it. The air whips my black hair around, dancing a jig, the last one it'll ever make before its plunge. I can hardly feel anything else but the air, and eyes closed, I know my body is going to slam into the water at any moment. If the impact doesn't kill me, break me, shatter me into a thousand pieces, then the current will, suffocating me and filling my lugs with putrid saltwater. Then, and only then, will it end. The miserable thing called life.

           A part of me didn't want this fall to end. This is the freest I think I've ever felt, since a baby with no way of knowing the Hell that awaited it, the Hell that it had been forced into, the Hell that it never asked for. Nobody asked to be alive, but I've never felt more alive than in the moment before my death. Because, for the first time in my life, I know what is going to happen to me. I'd made a choice, and it only belonged to me. And, in a second, it'll all be over.

        Finally, over.

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