Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta noise. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta noise. Mostrar todas las entradas

domingo, 24 de abril de 2016

Turning point

   He walked towards the window and noticed the void was only a few centimeters from his feet. He saw the city, its lights and many smaller figures moving from one side to the other. They could be seen because of the traffic lights and the cars. He imagined, or rather, he asked himself, if maybe there was someone in that entire city that could understand how he felt or what his life was like. But the answer was probably a negative one. He was alone and he had to learn to embrace that or suffer for the rest of his life.

 In his hand, he had the syringe ready to be used. He pressed his hand around it but, somehow, he couldn’t bring himself to do what he always did: inject the client with it so he would sleep longer and then have all the time in the world to rob him of every penny he had. After all, it wasn’t all about two coins. It was about a lot of money that couldn’t be traced once he had done what he knew best. But he just couldn’t do it.

 He was completely naked in front of that window, with a powerful drug in his hand and just couldn’t be the person he had been for so long. Suddenly a couple of tears escaped his eyes and then he knew what happened was really bad. He never cried and it was obvious he wasn’t crying for the guy that was sleeping in he bed. That man had it all and couldn’t complain about a single thing in his life. He cried because if he couldn’t do what he always did, he was done.

-       What’s up cutie?

 A tremor traveled all along his spine. The man on the bed was no longer sleeping.

-       I’m good. I wanted to feel the cold a bit.
-       Ok. Are you staying?
-       Whatever you want.
-       Come here.

 So he had to go back to bed, dropping the syringe in the dark and hoping he would be able to find it afterwards. It would be a disaster for him if someone else saw it and started asking questions.

 In bed, he had to wait until the client fell asleep again but apparently that wasn’t the mood he was in. The moment he got into bed, it seemed the guy had developed a new set of hands. And the younger man didn’t enjoy it one bit. He wanted to pick up his things and leave as soon as possible. But the only way to let the guy do. So he did.

 After thirty minutes or so, the man was tired again and felt asleep right away. The boy got out of bed, went to the bathroom to clean himself and to clean his face too and he discovered that he hated the person that looked at him from the mirror. There had been a separation between the version of him that did whatever was necessary to survive and the him that just wanted to be left alone in order to live in peace. They had lived in peace for long but now it seemed that conflict was coming back to his head.

 He got out of the bathroom and looked for the syringe with the light of his cellphone. It had fallen under the bed. He removed the needle and put it all in an internal pocket of his jacket. He put on his clothes in silence and got out as soon as possible, not before grabbing a couple of bills from the guy’s wallet. The fact that he wasn’t going to do the same thing to him that he did to all others, didn’t meant he didn’t need any money.

 Once outside the hotel, he walked to the nearest metro station and wait on the platform for ten minutes until one of the late trains arrived. There were many people inside for such a late hour but mainly drunks, prostitutes, junkies and many other beautiful flowers of the night. He sat down near the door and realized he was very tired and just wanted to rest. Even his awful bed would be perfect, even in that awful shared apartment in which the other guys living there were more like pigs than men.

 He reflected on his life, thinking he really hated must about it. He would have wanted a nice place with a big bed and a nice mattress. He would have wanted to live alone and away from idiots, who made him have headaches every single day. He would have wanted to just live a private life away from any eyes that would want to ruin that, that would want to judge him for everything he had done.

 But that wasn’t possible. He was poor, even after having stolen so much money. Because there was always a bigger fish and that bigger fish demanded a piece of the earnings or it would do a lot of damage just because. And he had to pay the rent for that hellhole, he had to eat and pay for his metro card. Like any other human being, except he robbed men who were “defenseless”. He didn’t thought of it like that but, whatever.

 Once he got home, he locked the door, turn off the lights and put on some cotton on his ears in order not to hear anything from the outside. He wanted a moment to himself and that wasn’t going to happen if he heard the stupidities of the world outside of him. So he fell asleep soon and he slept for several hours, until he felt he had had enough of his bed. His body felt hurt somehow and then he remembered clients could be assholes so he didn’t give it a second thought.

 Before he could cross any of the idiots that lived with him, he put on some clothes and ran for the door. He bought breakfast with money from an earlier job and tried to eat as slow as he could, in order to enjoy the meal and also to make time go slower. Because if he went fast, night would come again and he didn’t wanted it to come because he was part of it and he had responsibilities there which he didn’t want to fulfill at all.

 He ate bacon, eggs, bread, ham and a cup of tea. It was much more than what he normally ate. Sometimes he would just have a granola bar or something like that. And other days, very bad days, he would stay in his bedroom because there was no money to eat and then he would have to deal with all the other guys shit, They would ask him for money or for drugs or whatever and he was sick to have to do that, dealing with them.

 It was a possibility to send them all to hell, but he really couldn’t do it because he knew what he was like when he lost control. He knew that if he started yelling or something, he couldn’t be stopped. And many times it was not only about what could come out of his mouth but also what he could do to others and himself, physically. He was a very violent man when he wanted to and that’s why he wanted to avoid people in general. They only pissed him off and that wasn’t good.

 After breakfast, he decided to go to a mall and just try to have a normal day, without so many worries. So he grabbed one of the bills he had stolen from his client the night before and promised himself to buy something with that. Maybe a t-shirt or at least an ice cream to enjoy the day. But after looking so many pieces of clothing and so much food, he felt more ill than ever. Somehow, he was worse than he thought.

 He found himself thinking about the man that he wasn’t able to rob and also about all the other that he had indeed robbed. And tried to make sense of all of that. He realized he had no idea how everything had gotten to that point, how it was that a young guy like him had to do such things to keep living. He knew the world didn’t give a shit about him but there had to be more to it than just that.

 Then, he felt a hand on his shoulder. He turned instantly, scared as he had being thinking and not paying attention to the people around him. For a minute, he thought it was a cop or a security officer. But it was just Nathan, the guy that charged him for what he did. He knew Nathan had come for more money but he had none. And he was done accepting that deal, because there was nothing he could take away from him anymore. No secrets, no revelations to make to anyone.


 His life was on a turning point but he had no idea if it was for the best or the worst.

sábado, 27 de febrero de 2016

Shooting stars

   The shooting star crossed the sky fast, almost not giving anyone time to properly think about their wishes. It was a silly tradition but people had been doing that for so much time that, it made no sense not to do it. Monica watched it from her bench, comfortably seated there with her son Matt. He was complaining about not having been able to take a picture of the shooting star but Monica didn’t hear him. She was still thinking about her wish; about the only think she really really wanted. But it was one of those impossible dreams, one that had to defy science if it were to become a reality. So she knew there was no way.

 When they got home, Matt was still talking about the shooting star, how he had read about it in a book in school and how his teacher had told the class that shooting stars were just space junk, little and medium rocks that get trapped in the atmosphere and burn. Monica was now listening but she didn’t have anything to add. She felt tired and wanted to rest. Her weak had been very difficult and Matt could talk for hours if she didn’t said anything back. So she asked if he wanted some macaroni and cheese and, of course, he said yes. She gave him a big bowl and sat down with him in front of the TV, watching some animated movie. She didn’t eat. He fell asleep after he was done.

 Carrying Matt had been easier before, when Luke was alive. But things change and now she had to do all that by herself. Her friends told her to start dating, to look for someone to spend the rest of her life with. The truth was she was still young but the memory of Luke was still so fresh that she would feel as if she was cheating on him or something. That was silly but it’s always a difficult thing to go through. Matt, luckily, had been far stronger. He did cry at first and sometimes he asked things about Luke and heaven and things about his days as a baby. But that was it. Monica was his world now.

 Tired, she went to bed right after leaving Matt on his bed. She washed her face, brushed her teeth and put on some old pajamas. She looked at the bed and sighed. It was a king size bed in which she navigated every night, not capable of being still, not capable of keeping her body on her spot. Her body knew Luke wasn’t there anymore but her brain apparently had other ideas as she often saw him besides her before closing her eyes, his kind smile and big nose. She loved that big nose.

 The next day was a Saturday. She realized it was late because the sunlight was hitting her right in the face through the window’s blinds. Monica normally woke up early because of Matt but apparently her state from the day before had caused her to oversleep. She was about to convince herself to stay even for more time but then she heard a loud sound, something crashing against the floor, shattering. Matt had probably attempted to get his breakfast by himself and now there was glass or bits of plates all over the kitchen. That’s the just of a mother for you. She begrudgingly got out of bed, put on her slippers and went down to the kitchen.

 Not having arrived yet, she started telling Matt to get out of the kitchen so she could clean first and then make him pancakes. But it wasn’t Matt who came out of the kitchen.

 For a moment, she felt she couldn’t properly breathe. She had to grab the sofa and try not to fall down. Her heart ached and her eyes were trying to focus on something else and not on the person that was coming closer, grabbing her, helping her not to faint. She was very scared but her body was not responding properly, so she could fight her helper. She was powerless and she was crying too. She couldn’t stop the tears or her heavy breathing. The man laid her down in the sofa and looked at her with his kind smile and his big nose.

 Matt finally came out of the kitchen holding a broom. Before he had seen his mother, he told Luke he had cleaned all the man and that now they could keep cooking for mama. Then he looked at her and his voice was lost. Luke told him to come closer and tell Monica to breath slowly. He would start with breakfast so they could properly begin their day. As he disappeared into the kitchen, Monica was able to breath slowly. She grabbed his son’s hands and tried to talk but nothing would come out. He told her that she should breath slowly and that Dad would take care of anything. She then heard him singing, and that confused her even more.

 Luke had always sung. He loved to do it and had always had the dream to become a professional artist. But then they had Matt and money was needed so he entered the retail business. He managed a big department store and that was a good job that gave them many possibilities, even money for a guitar and lessons for Luke. As a matter of fact, he was coming back from his first audition when the car he was in with a friend was hit by truck and killed them. She went to the morgue and saw his body and cried and yelled. And now that same man was in her kitchen, apparently cooking her favorite type of eggs.

 She pinched herself once and again to check if she was dreaming, Matt looking at her a little scared. She indicated she wanted a hug and Matt complied. As she did so, Monica could still hear the song they had danced to on their day being sung by Luke. Her wish had come true and he was somehow there. She inhaled deeply, caressed her son and stood up, then slowly walked to the kitchen.

 He was chopping onions and bell peppers. He had already done that with some tomatoes and had a big bowl of eggs he had already whisked. She saw him from the doorway but Matt entered and opened the refrigerator. He pulled out a carton of milk and the big bottle of juice. It was a bit heavy for him so Luke helped him and he then saw his wife standing there. He asked her if she was okay. She just nodded, controlling her body in order not to faint. She was amazed at how good she was at trying to keep everything in check.

 Luke approached her and told her she had to add all the spices to the eggs. He stood up behind her and passed Monica some pepper, salt, paprika and some hot sauce. She poured the sauce slowly and he grabbed her hand and her body shook uncontrollably. She excused herself and his response was to hug her from behind and just say: “I’ve missed you so much”.

 Monica turned around right then, her eyes very open. She was touching his face, which felt real, and kissed him. He felt real then too. She then remembered the first time they had kiss, one day after class in college. He had bought her some pizza and she had bought the drinks. They had been talking about some new movie and how amazing it all was, the visual effects and the story and so on. And then, a shooting star crossed the sky. They smiled and then they just looked at each other and kissed. Simple as that.

 Matt made her comeback to the present, or whatever that was. She was holding Luke very tight and realized it was an opportunity and that she would have to be very stupid not to take it. She went along with it, cooking breakfast and laughing at the table, helping Matt do the dishes afterwards and planning a great day for the three of them. They went to a park to which they hadn’t gone for a while and gave Matt a kite to run around with and took pictures of Luke teaching him how to do it. Monica also tried it but she wasn’t very good.

 After that, they decided to have a small picnic and Matt fell asleep for a few minutes, full and tired. During that time, the couple just held hands in silence and looked up at the sky, very blue and without any clouds. She felt she had so many questions and so many things to say. But she didn’t want to break the spell of the moment. So she didn’t say a word and just held him hard. He gently squeezed her hand and they played that game until Matt woke up and they decided to play a short game of football.  They were both good kicking it and blocking the goal post. They played for hours, the here of them, until the stars began to appear in the sky and the cold settled around them.


 Again, they saw a shooting star. And then Monica turned to Luke and saw he wasn’t there. She smiled and sat on the grass. And Matt, he had vanished too.

sábado, 6 de febrero de 2016

The 501st

   The first battalion to arrive at the drop point was the 501st. Commander Yok, who led them nowadays, was a very experienced man, having the privilege of been one of the few soldiers in the war to have been personally awarded a medal by the Chancellor. He was very respected by his men and it hadn’t been very difficult to decide he would be the one to lead the invasion of Kamara. And even if they hadn’t chosen him, he would have volunteered. That was the kind of man Yok was, always putting the mission first, him second.

The planet Kamara was very far the industrial worlds and the farming planets but it was important for another reason: tourism. It had been a resort world for many centuries, a favorite spot for the wealthy of the galaxy but just after the war the ties to the planet had been cut and the indigenous population, which lived of the tourists, was left to defend itself when the Confederacy invaded. They destroyed many of the hotels and resorts, as well as many attractions that had made of Kamara the envy of all the tropical worlds.

 Commander Yok landed in the jungle, near Kyloi, the capital of the world and the center of all confederate activity. The idea was simple: to decimate them with aerial attacks and then move in the troops. They were lucky enough to have two full cruisers for this mission so the planet was expected to fall shorty after the arrival of he army. Such was the trust put on Yok and his men that many aristocrats were already planning their trips to Kamara, not only to enjoy its beaches and climate but to recover the fortunes they had left in the many vaults constructed all around.

 Before the first way of bombers departed, Yok demanded a probe to be sent and check for the status of the city and the population. But that proved useless as the probe, and the two sent after that one, exploded in midair before reaching the central area of the city. Bombing started and from a mountain overlooking the city, Yok was able to see how many buildings the bombs destroyed, how they fell and burned. He was pumped. He had been made for this in the factories of his home world, and now his flesh was ready for battle.

 He led his men raging through the streets of the decimated city, running at first and the marching, all the way to the capitol of Kamara, building that was at the center of the city in every sense possible. They were silent, slowing down their march and blowing up roadblocks every so often. They climbed the steps of the capitol and went inside. No one was there, not a single confederate. They went to the top of the building and planted there the flag of the galactic government, claiming back Kamara. But joy was short-lived.

 Everyone knew taking a planet couldn’t be that easy. It normally involved very heavy fighting and resistance. It required days, at least, or months at most. Besides, they hadn’t seen a single native. The people there were rather humanoid but with green skin. If they had seen one, it would have been obvious. But nothing, not one of them was lying dead on the street or hiding in any of the many building that the 501st checked on that first day. To prevent anything from going wrong, Yok asked for no more battalions to come down to the ground until the situation was clearer.

 The first night was very confusing for the soldiers. They gather around and improvised fire and were rapidly divided into two groups: the one that believed they had won already because the enemy had abandoned Kamara and the other group, who believed there was something darker in the shadows of the capital. They discussed each theory thoroughly but didn’t reach any consensus. Yok didn’t really pay attention, not even taking part of the conversation.

 He was a soldier, a hero for many and now he was in a situation in which he had never been before. The enemy appeared to be smarter this time or at least much more mysterious than usual. He wondered why there were no bodies, from any kind, why there were no signs of the invasion that had cut off Kamara definitely from the rest of the galaxy. Communications had been interrupted but in the capital all services appeared to be in optimal shape except they didn’t work.

 Yok was the only one that didn’t sleep that night. Every other man closed his eyes and fell asleep fast. None of them were tired, they couldn’t really be but maybe it was because it was their first peaceful night in a while that they felt so at ease and in peace in Kyloi. The following they, they checked several other government offices but they couldn’t find anything that would explain why the planet was deserted. The army was already considering pulling off their war effort on the planet and place it somewhere they could actually help in some way.

 But as decisions were taken, something happened and only the 501st was there to see it. Up, in the sky, several enemy cruisers appeared out of nowhere. They engaged the army in the air and the battalion on the ground could only see how their forces were destroyed in a matter of hours. The only ship they had was a shuttle that hadn’t been built for galactic travel. So they were trapped in Kamara with enemy cruisers in the air and a sudden sound that made their souls quiver. It was a sound they realized had always been there but just now they realized it wasn’t supposed to be there.

 The enemy cruisers left the airspace, disappearing into the blackness of space, leaving the soldiers frightened to death on the ground. The sound didn’t stop, growing in volume and, apparently, in number. They all had their guns up, pointing at the sound as if they could attack it. But they couldn’t do anything about it. The sound continued as the small group of men climbed a building and decided to take shelter in the terrace, in order to see if they could decipher what was making that noise.

 But when they decided to investigate, the sound stopped. However, damage had been done. The men were scared and knew they were trapped for at least three days if not more. Commander Yok tried to contact their headquarters several times but he was unable to do so. Nothing came into his radio, no communication of any kind. He even tired scanning the sky for ships, even maybe cargo vessels or whatever was up there. But nothing, it just didn’t work.

 Then they heard another sound but this was weaker. It came from below so they descended the building and so what it was. A humanoid, one of the greens that inhabited the planet, was there in front of them. But it didn’t seem to be ok. It was barely moving, its arm an legs moving very strangely and his eyes just opened but unfocused. Commander Yok ordered the men to raise their weapons and wait for his command. The humanoid stayed there and he began to tremble, especially around the waist and chest. The men were all scared at this point.

 Suddenly, the most awful thing that could have happened happened. The humanoid burst open and from inside his bodies many insect-like creatures emerged, breaking his ribcage and launching themselves towards the soldiers. Gunfire was heard all around, insects blowing up in one side and the other. Commander Yok ordered the men to climb up the building again. But he hadn’t realized many more insects had come out, they appeared to have been waiting for them or possibly they all hatched at the same time.

 Arriving last in the terrace and locking the entrance, Yok realized the enemy had set them up. They had used some kind of creature to lay eggs inside the indigenous people of Kamara and use them as hosts that would burst open once the army had arrived. The bodies were probably in the sewers and hadn’t been detected because they were practically dead.


 The insects pounded the door hard, clinking sound made by their pincers. Every single man tried to help in holding the door, except Yok. He knew what was going to happen, somehow he had always known. He decided to put on his helmet and face the true destiny of a hero, of a true soldier of the Republic.

lunes, 23 de febrero de 2015

My Right Toe

  Stupidly, I had bumped my foot into a chair. By night, my big toe was a big red ball throbbing and hurting horribly. My beautiful partner helped me a bit but he was too grossed out by it so I had to take this matter into my own hands. Resisting the pain, I tried to make the blood and pus that had formed when the nail got stuck right into the flesh.

 After along time of moaning and panting, I dried my wound, cleaning it with all kind of products and then putting a bandage al around my toe to keep it free from infection. My sleep was not very good and, the next morning, I saw it still hurt a lot. Before leaving for work, Patrick told me to call Laura, a neighbor that happened to be a nurse. Mondays were her day of and she might be able to help on what to do with my toe.

 I called her on the cell and she came right away. We had helped Laura moving in after divorcing her husband and we had become great friends. Also, she left her daughter with us when she had to stay too late at work and her sister wasn’t able to babysit. The little one was adorable and we liked to have her in order to watch a lot of children movies and give her all kinds of bad and good food.

 After examination, Laura told me to call the pharmacy and ask for something to reduce the swelling of my toe that should be good if I stayed a couple of days at home. It would heal eventually but not if I worked too hard on it, and as my work consisted on walking a lot, this meant I couldn’t go anywhere.

 After Laura left, I called my office in order to tell them I wouldn’t be able to go for a couple of days because of an accident. My partner there got very worried and threatened to come home later and, before I could tell her it was all ok, she had hung up. The drugs from the pharmacy took some time to arrive and it was odd, for me, to receive the deliveryman wearing my pajamas barefoot. I didn’t really like not wearing socks or footwear but Laura had been adamant about it. The man warned me that the pills made you sleepy, which I loved instantly.

 When the man had left, I took one of the pills and swallowed it with a big gulp of water. I had never been very good at taking medicine, even the simplest ones. Maybe it was because my mother was so overprotective when I was little and she kept trying for me to take vitamins and codfish oil. She forced me so often; I think I created an utter dislike for anything that comes from a pharmacy or from a doctor.

 Patrick called shortly afterwards to check on me. I told him I couldn’t move a lot, only applying some hot water on my toe every so often. He sent me a kiss and promised to be there as soon as he could, which I knew was not very soon because he was an assistant in a sports team and those people loved to stay in one place talking and arguing for hours and hours and even if they didn’t have an incoming match, they would discuss all the games they had seen during the weekend, which could take some time.

 I personally didn’t like sports that much but when I met Patrick he tried to make me be a little sportier. He failed tremendously although now I can watch a whole football game without the need to check my phone every five seconds or pretending to go to the bathroom. I do get bored still but I guess love can conquer all differences, if one is committed enough.

 It was funny that when I turned on the TV, a tennis match was on. Then the doorbell rang and, slowly, I walked to the door. Strangely, my foot felt heavier, more swollen even. Didn’t the anti-inflammatory work? It was Laura and her little daughter. The little one was carrying a green backpack and a doll in her arms. They both came in and then Laura started talking fast: apparently her sister had a problem with her car and she had to go and help so she wondered if I could take care of her daughter Amanda.

-       Sure.

 To be quite honest, I don’t really get children that much. I mean, I like Amanda a lot but Patrick is always around when she comes in and he’s such a good guy with kids: he knows lots of games (or maybe his improvisation is really good) and kids like him a lot because his funny and just great.
Me, however, not so much. I mean, I can be creative because it’s part of my job but being a only child and having no close relatives younger than me, I never had the experience to take care of any of them.

 My first idea was to change the channel and put on some cartoons. I had no idea what kids Amanda’s age liked to see. Actually, I realized I had no idea how old she was. So I asked. She was so interested in the cartoon that she only put one hand up, with all her fingers stretched. Then I saw one more on the other hand, that she hadn’t put up. So seven years old.

-       I haven’t had breakfast. Are you hungry?

 She nodded, not really paying attention to what I had said. I went, slowly, to the kitchen. I almost hit a counter in the kitchen with my feet and had to cover my mouth to curse. The kid, luckily, didn’t turn to look at me. Apparently cartoons were much more interesting than the limping man in the apartment.

 After a fast look, I realized we had nothing good for a child to eat. Both Patrick and me ate granola for breakfast and I was sure kids didn’t like that. But I did so I poured some on a bowl with almond milk, because I’m weird that way. I found, at the back of a cupboard, a few cookies covered in chocolate. Was she allowed to have sweets this early in the day?

-       Amanda?
-       Yeah?
-       What would you like to eat?
-       Mm…

 She took quite a long time to say she was rather thirsty. Luckily, we always had plenty of fresh orange juice so I poured some for her on a small glass, which I thought was best for a child. I put it in front of her, in the coffee table, but I didn’t know if she had seen me. Her eyes looked as if she had been hypnotized or something. Then, the doorbell rang again.

 Apparently the doorman let anyone in, as it was a man handling pamphlets for a new Chinese restaurant. I told him we only needed one menu but he forced a bunch on my hands. As I couldn’t move, that was most probably a crime, or so I thought. I closed the door but then it was the intercom ringing. My toe was throbbing more than ever when I answered: we had bought a new dining table and I had totally forgotten about it.

 So for the following thirty minutes, I had a child drinking juice and watching TV, two men trying to get everything in the tiny elevator and then out, a bunch of useless restaurant menus and a toe hurting like mad. I was already cursing my luck when an older lady, a neighbor, came to complain about the noise the guys from the furniture store were making. I tried to be nice but then the old bat put her cane right on top of my foot.

 I don’t know if it was on purpose but I pushed the lady aside and made her fall on a chair by the door. Then the man in the living room dropped the table heavily, scaring the life out of Amanda, who screamed loudly and starting crying noisily. The man dragged the chairs in, as I helped the old lady up. I then screamed at them for damaging my floor and the lady fell again and I almost fell with her but apparently faith hates my foot as one of the guy’s dropped a chair right on it.

 I cursed so loud and hard everyone stopped making a noise and just stared at me, like I was mad or something. Then, I saw Patrick’s face and he was visibly confused by everything.

-       I got the day off… What’s going on?

 Behind him was Victoria, my partner at the office. She looked worried.


 Done with the world, I just decided to fall onto the sofa and let him deal with everything. Finally, with a huge pain on my foot and the sounds of people crying and screaming and talking again, I fell asleep. The medications had kicked in.