A student sat in his truck. The previous night he witnessed two of his fuck-drunk friends get hit by a car. They ran into an intersection, hands interlocked, and were both promptly t-boned by a doddery old man driving a silver Toyota Corolla. The front end of the vehicle exploded, sending glass, carbon fiber, and human body alike flying through the air in a morbid yet glorious display of fragility. The only clue he had as to their well-being was a grim news report that claimed they were both in critical condition.
His mind drifted into a cynical tangent about the pointlessness of life. He thought about the frailty of his homeless father, whose death was rapidly approaching. He thought about the last moments he spent with his friend Martine, her face yellow and gaunt due to the chemotherapy. He thought about how, around exactly the same time last year, his best friend Michael was murdered. His thoughts were eventually interrupted by a man with a gun.
“If you’re going to shoot me, just do it, because—” The car-jacker shot the student in the head. Blood spattered his “FUCK CANCER” air freshener.
He awoke being greeted by his dead friend Michael. Audioslave’s Doesn’t Remind Me played loudly just beyond a pair of golden gates. It was a party.
“We don’t have much time, so we better make this quick,” said Michael. He grabbed the student by the arm and lead him through a door made of cloud.
“Am I in heaven?” asked the student.
“Not exactly,” replied Mike.
“How did you know I would be arriving?”
“I saw your name roll by on the ‘possible invites’ ticker.”
They arrived in a warehouse the size of a football stadium. A single jumbotron hung from nothingness. Mike pulled out a remote control that read CROSBIE-FUTURE. He pressed the on button and flipped through channels before stopping at a scene depicting the student’s funeral.
“As you can see, your friends made it. Nothing but a couple broken bones and bruised egos.” The student opened his mouth to speak but was interrupted.
“It gets better.” Mike flipped to another channel. One of the student's friends was down on one knee, proposing to the other.
“They really hit it off after the whole human frogger ordeal,” said Michael. The student was flabbergasted.
“Now I really need you to pay attention to these next ones.” Michael brandished another remote that read CROSBIE-PAST. A myriad of the student’s favourite memories played out on the screen. He watched as his younger self picked mussels with his father. He watched himself smile for a photo with Martine at her wedding. The student began to cry as Michael showed him the final memory. The screen showed the student and Michael laughing hysterically in a garage while they smoked a hookah pipe.
“Why are you showing me this Mike?” said the student.
“When you wake up I want you to remember how beautiful it is to be alive.”
Photo Credit: 4Pictures
Just a 23-year-old Irishman stuck in the city that fun forgot, cutting through the bullshit one story at a time. My hobbies include pretending I’m a scribbler, navigating sobriety, and consuming lemon-flavoured libations. I imagine myself becoming a famous writer one day, but if that doesn’t work out, I can always fall back on cooking professionally and screaming at people.