Danny steps closer to the edge. The cold air around him breezes through his hair. He feels the cold of pressing on the sweat that running down his neck and forehead. The blood is pumping so hard through his veins that he can hear his heartbeat in his ears. He takes a deep breath and glazes downwards onto the school campus below him. A crowd of people had started to gather below, looking up, shouting up, wanting him not to fill their day with a tragedy. He takes a deep breath to calm himself down. It doesn’t help, so he takes another. And another.
He is afraid of what he has to do.
What he needs to do.
Behind him a girl in a violet dress stares at him. She knows that what he has to do isn’t easy, but he has to do it. It was what was best for him. What was best for everyone. He looks back and sees the girl.
“I know you are scared.”
He looks down again, a drop of sweat falls 100 meters downward onto the crowd that has started to lift their cellphones and cameras up in the air. He pulls his lips together. He was always a little afraid of heights.
“Don’t do it!”
“Dan stop that.”
“We all care for you.”
Screams coming from a distance he can barely hear. He raised his hand and wished past past his eye, pressing his palm against it. He had known before that it was going to be difficult, but nothing had prepared him for this. He takes two more steps towards the edge. The tip of his toes were now reaching over the edge of the school dorm.
“Jenny, why are they taking pictures? Shouldn’t they be…”
“Running up to help you? To drag you away? At this point you might jump over the edge any second. The illusion is right now more important to them than trying to save you.”
He swallows again. Behind him the door leading down to the doors pulsated under the pressure of campus police banging against it. They were using all their muscle to break through it. To save a life. To make it in time. To rescue a boy from his misguided thoughts.
“Danny, wait, we’re almost through.”
“Let us talk to you.”
The shouts coming from the door were clearer to him than the sounds coming from below him.
“They are only trying to save the host.” She walks towards him and puts her hand on his shoulder. “Soon this will all be over.”
“I can do this, just give me a second…”
Jenny walks past him and across the edge, her feet falling loosely as her body is flying through the air. She turns around and looks him into the eye.
“I can do this…”
“I know you can.” She raises her arms towards him. The bangs on the door behind Danny have started to become louder now. Small pieces of wood started to fly away from it.
“Danny do it now. They are coming through the door.” She shakes her arms at him, emphasizing her eagerness. Danny’s heart was slowing down now. Somehow a calm came over him. He had started accept it. Accepted his final step. As he looked up he saw his sister smiling at him.
“Come Danny, come to your big sister.” Danny was now fully relaxed. He didn’t want to close his eyes anymore. He wanted to see his sister. That was all he wanted. To see his sister. To really see her. He lifted his left leg across the edge and pulled it back again, feeling the air rush past it.
“Danny, don’t your mother is here.” The campus police had broken through the door now and were looking at Danny. His mother pressed herself through them.
“DANNY BY GOD PLEASE DON’T DO THIS.” She screamed at the top of her lungs and ran towards him. Danny turned around and smiled at her. This was his moment. The last part of this fantasy he was living. And now he had to end it. He turned towards his sister, bent his knees and jumped off the ledge.
Gravity pulled him down at a high speed and the air rushing past him exhilarated him as he saw the stony ground coming ever closer to him. He thought about how he would finally wake up. Finally leave this death and come back to life.
A piece of his eye was catapulted into the face of teacher as his face crashed unto the ground breaking most of the bones in his body. Through the impact his torso and ribcage had broken through the constraints of his skin and were now raging through his back. His arms were broken in multiple places. His legs had bones stabbing through them and an ever increasing pool of blood was starting to make its way away towards the crowd that had gathered around him. The friend of a faculty member pushed himself past the crowd and ran towards the boy. He knelled down and pressed two fingers on his neck. His eyes opened wide in shock.
“HE’S ALIVE, call an ambulance NOW.”
6 Hours ago
Danny woke up at the sound of his radio. It played Good Feeling from Flo Rida, not the best song to described his situation. He rolled over in his bed and hit the to of the alarm clock, pressing a button that deactivated the alarm. He pressed his eyes closer together, swallowing one last time before opening them. He knew what he would see when he opened them.
“I know you’re awake, you know.” Jenny was floating above his body. Her arms crossed, she looked at him with a smile. “Come on, get up. We have to talk.” Danny stretched his arms and legs, letting blood flow quicker through his arteries.
“Gmmahh, I don’t want to.”
“Yes you do, else you wouldn’t have put on that alarm clock.” Danny remembered why he had set it to midnight. Why he had to wake up and see his sister again. Why he had to make sure that what has been happening was real, or if he was just insane. He sat up and looked at her.
“Ok, I’m up.”
“So… it has happened, hasn’t it? The third sign?”
“Yes, it has…” Danny had just woken up but already he felt his hairs raise themselves off his skin at the thought of where this conversation was going.
“Don’t be afraid Danny, I can feel you are.”
“I’m sorry, this is just too… much I guess.”
“I know it is, but you know now, right?”
“Yes, I know.”
“Then you know what you have to do.” Danny took a deep breath. He had seen the signs, seen how it signals, and he knew what he had to do.
“Is it really the only way?”
“Yes, how else could it happen? You have to end it in a way that your mind has to accept. Something it can’t fight against. I told you right at the beginning that it was the only solution.”
“Yea, but the third sign… It might as well have only been luck.”
“Nobody has that much luck Danny.”
“Rolling sixty-six sixes right after another… I mean, the probably isn’t zero.”
“After the second sign you’ve already started to accept this, why are you backing away now?”
“I don’t know…” Danny swings his legs out of bed, stretches himself and opens up the window next to his bed. The night is clear, no cloud anywhere, everywhere stars. Jenny floats to him and puts her hand on his shoulders.
“Don’t you want to see your family? Your real family?” Danny lets out a small breath of air.
“I do, but I don’t want to die.”
“No one ever does Danny.” Another quiet sets in between the two of them. Jenny starts to move her fingers around his neck, massaging him slowly. At first Danny tightens up, but then he lets his arms fall and tries to relax.
“It’s just all so crazy, you know..”
“Just the day before yesterday you suddenly appear in front of my bed, tell me that I am in a coma and you’re here to help me wake up. It’s all…. and now I have to kill myself just to wake up, I mean what if…”
“We had this discussion before.”
“You were afraid that I was just an apparition that you invented. Some little illusion caused by the new painkillers you got for your leg. Then I told you to look out for the signs around you.The first one was…”
“That people around me were watching me…”
“The second was…?”
“That I’ve never left Orange County.”
“That I could roll sixti-six sixes one after the other.”
“Because my mind tricks me into thinking that I’m living in a a perfect world…” The words felt weird to Danny. All of this was indeed strange, even insane to some aspect. But Jenny had always been right about the things she talked about. Once she had mentioned it he really did feel how people were watching him. He would just walk down a street and people would look at him, staring at him a little. Not all of them, just some. But more than enough for Danny to know he was being watched.
“I don’t know if I wanna do this anymore…”
“So you don’t want to see me anymore?” Jenny stops her massage and steps back. Danny turns around to look at her while he scratches the back of his neck.
“Look that’s not.. I didn’t want to imply that. You know that.” She looks at him with a tear rolling out from one of her eyes.
“Danny… please… You don’t know how difficult it was to come here and…”
“LOOK I KNOW! I KNOW OK? I know how difficult it was for you. I KNOW that… but fuck, it’s still my life…” Jenny had started to move away from Danny. She didn’t like it when he had a loud voice.
“Danny… I, I came back from the dead to help you leave this place… AND trust me, it’s a lot harder than you think.” Jenny started to raise her voice too now. Tears started to glide down her cheeks. “It was so much work to get here, into this coma of yours. Contact you and fucking try to talk to you, ok?” Danny started to walk around the room, still scratching the itch on his neck that he only imagined.
“NO it’s NOT ok. I wanted to help you Danny, and now? Do you want to stay here? With these fucking apparitions? These people you only create in your mind? NO, I won’t let you.” She dropped to her knees and started to cry.
“Look, Jenny…” He walks over to her, kneels down beside her and closes his arms around her. “I’m sorry. I know you worked hard for this…” Little noises of a stuffed nose came from her nose.
“So will you do it?”
“Yes, yes I will do it.” Suddenly Jenny rips herself away from Danny’s clutch and stands up.
“Good, because I’ve got to go now. You’ve got to wake up in 5 hours and then we’ll go to the roof.” Surprised by this sudden cure of her inner ailments, Danny stands up too.
“Ok, well then…”
“Goodnight Danny, till tomorrow.” Danny smiles at her while she starts to disappear. He walks back to his bed, jumps in and makes himself comfortable under his blankets.
2 days ago
“Hey Danny, howya doing?” Dr. Wallace asks as he opens Danny the door to his office.
“Pretty good given the circumstances.” Danny walks on a crutch to a chair that sits in front of the Dr. Wallace’s dark brown wooden desk.
“I can imagine.” Dr. Wallace walks from the door to his desk and sits himself down. He opens a bottom draw that is on his side of the desk and starts looking through some files. Danny looks around the room. Apparently the doctor must have repainted, last time the walls were blue, now they were a light yellow. Danny like it more. Change was always a good thing to him, it freshened life up.
“So, here we go.” Dr. Wallace takes a little folder from the bottom drawer, lies it unto the desk and starts skipping through it. “Here it reads you are taking Milenol right now?”
“But you want to upgrade to something stronger?”
“Can I ask why? Your current painkillers should be enough for that leg of yours.”
“Ye..Yes you’re right but sometimes I wake up at night…”
“Say no further, I know whatchu mean.” Danny’s doctor had always been a fast talker. He didn’t like to have quiet around him. His mind usually drew a connection to a childhood trauma he had experienced with his uncle, a gun and the words ‘stay quiet or I’ll fucking kill you.’
“So I’ve got two for you.” He pulls out a bottle from his drawer. “This one will make you sleep better.”
“And this one,” he pulls out a second bottle “will help you with the pain.”
Danny thought about it for a second.
“Well? Which one?” He started to play around with the bottles. “Come on Danny, talk, which one?”
“Does it really matter?”
“Well no, I guess not. But that’s where all the fun is right? So whichon do you want?”
Danny thought about it.
“Here I’ve got an idea. I’ll put both the bottles behind my back and you’ll have to choose left or right.” He pulled both of his hands behind his back and starred at Danny with a big grin. At this point Danny wasn’t sure of the doctor had taken anything or if he was just trying to be funny. The truth was, he had. It was early in the morning and two hours ago he had taken his own little medicine. It consisted of a little bit of cocaine with a small shot of tequila. To take the edge off the job. And to let him forget that he lost his virginity to a man that was holding a gun to his head. This time he had taken a little too much though. Energy was pumping through his veins like sugar through a cola and he had started forget where his patients medicine began…
“Danny, I’m waaaiting.”
and his own medicine began.
“OK OK! I’ll take the left one.”
Was it in the bottom left drawer?
“Are you sure?”
Or was it in the bottom right drawer?
“Yes, I guess.”
Dr. Wallace didn’t know anymore.
Danny thought about it for a second.