Running with Time (Part One)

Custom User Avatar
More by this author
‘Run, run.’ These words repeated through my head over and over again as I bolted across the open desert. My tongue was dry, my eyes were rough, and my feet felt like fire, but the urge to get away fueled me as I ran blindly into the desert. Every muscle in my body was aching, but they were also all pushing, pushing because they knew that if they didn’t, they would push no more.

My breathing slowed and my run subconsciously reduced to a walk. I looked back without really seeing; all I knew was that they had stopped. The voices, they had all stopped. I smiled as I looked forwards into the blinding sunlight. I shielded my eyes with my hand as I looked across a bleak desolate desert expansion lying out before me. The only thing in sight was a desert shrub, seeming like a duck in the midst of swans, out of place among the desert landscape. I dropped my hand where it flopped down to my side and stood awkwardly hunched in place. The only thing I knew was that if I stopped now, I’d never make it there before I could go no further. I’d never make it before my legs ran out, my muscles ran dry, and my soul gave up. I had to keep going, had to keep walking. Almost without my thinking so, my feet started in a westerly direction, towards the sun looming on the horizon. West was safe, west was freedom, west was home.

My feet ached, but the aching turned to a dull pain as the sun sunk ever downward towards the brown expanse of dirt filled ocean that lay before me. I took a deep breath to steady myself, but my mouth became dry the moisture instantly soaked up by the intense heat. I coughed and sputtered, trying to get enough fluid back into my mouth so that I could breathe again. I finally recovered myself and spit onto the ground in front of me, leaning over with my hands on my knees. I wiped my mouth that now tasted of bile and looked towards the sun. I could feel it’s heat reflected onto my face, I felt like my face alone was now it’s own sun, radiating heat no longer from the outside, but from the inside. At that point I was ready to wager that my face and cheeks could create their own solar system by the intensity of it, but I was also realizing how much I was becoming more and more delirious. I watched the sun touch the barren ocean expanse before me and quickly sink, relieving my face for a moment from its heat intensity. Now I knew that I had to get as far as I could before I lost the light, or I could become off course while walking at night, and have to make up for it in the morning. So I walked. The motion seemed almost completely subconscious now. I wonder how you walk without knowing you do. How is it that you don’t notice it, yet you’re thinking about it at the same time? The aching that turned to numbness had now turned to a pain on the balls of my feet. I could feel it spreading, like my life force was being sucked out of me, starting at my feet and working its way up to my heart. I knew that’s when I would be over. I had to arrive before the pain reached my heart or no sanctuary for me. No nothing at all.

I kept whistling tunes in my head, for I was no longer able to talk, it just hurt too much. I went through Yankee Doodle Dandee, Mary had a Little Lamb, the National Anthem, and other random songs that popped into my head. My brain felt like it was completely separate from my now fully aching feet. My mouth burned and my throat felt like I had swallowed a torch. My stomach, which at first was just an uncomfortable feeling now ached painfully as I walked on into the night.

*
*
*


The house seemed quiet as I walked in the front door. I slowed my breathing down and put my jacket down quietly on the table by the front door instead of my normal throwing. It was different somehow. Someone was in the house. Not being a very big house, a sound from the kitchen carried to my keen ears like a shot from a gun would in an airport. Distinct and direct. I sniffed the air looking like a dog trying to catch a scent. It was odd, but my kind tended to do that sort of thing.

I smelled something familiar and knew it was one of my kind from the first whiff. The only question was who. I pulled my shotgun out of my pocket, still on my person from a day on the job; I walked completely silent towards the kitchen, my feet barely making a sound on the carpeted flooring. I breathed in with big silent gulps so that I couldn’t be heard, and placed my back against the wall next to the kitchen door. I knew there was someone in there, but who, was the great question. I counted to three took a deep breath and…

*
*
*


I shook my head to get my mind out from zooming off. I couldn’t do that now, if I did, who knows what would happen. I walked on. My legs were aching up to my knees. I looked out by starlight in the westerly direction, or what I thought was the westerly direction.

My mouth felt like it was on fire and I felt like I was eating sand. My stomach felt like it was constricting in on itself and I felt like my insides were being sucked into a black hole located in the pit of my stomach. My eyes were crusted with dust, and though I wanted to wipe them off, it hurt more to even touch them, for they were so worn down by the earlier day’s winds that it would hurt more to do so. The night was calm and still, the stars shone overhead, no moon made the visibility horrible, and made me feel like a disaster case. I felt like I was moving in slow motion, nothing changed, so it was like I was walking through nothing. Almost like I was walking through space and time itself. All that made it real was the pain, the constant pain. I felt like it was just a part of me now. I tried not to listen to my body, who just wanted to lie down and accept it, my head told me I needed to keep going, I needed to keep moving.

I became cold. I didn’t understand how it could change so much, in so little time. I was burning, scorching, and now I was freezing. It really did feel like I was walking through the twilight zone. Like I was walking through some sort of wormhole.

The night still stayed for what seemed like forever, there was a nice looking bush up ahead.

*
*
*





Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!

bRealTime banner ad on the left side
Site Feedback