Death Reports

Matthew's Curse, part 1

"Mom, can you please turn the lights on?"
"Matthew, you're turning 7 tomorrow, you're not a baby!"
"But mom..."
"Hush, good night!"

I was standing on her grave with an empty, dull look on my face. I couldn’t feel the ground underneath my feet. I couldn’t feel anything anymore. Anything at all. I remember some people passing me by. Staring at me. Taking their selfish steps away from me. All I could clearly see was a playground. But the little body that was lying motionless in a puddle colored with blood, in the middle of the playground wasn’t that clear to me. I could only see the faceless corpse of a boy.

Some boy.

It was midnight in my vision. In those stupid unrelated sequences that pop in my mind once in a while. That disturb me. Mentally. It was midnight in my mind. I clearly heard the clock pounding midnight; the clock from the St. Peter’s church tower. Then it ended. My mind was empty. Blank. Like I was lost. Like I was dead.

I needed a few minutes to come to senses. What a horrible gift I possess. A horrible gift. I looked at my watch. 9:00 PM. Sharp. Sarah was smiling at me from a picture on her gravestone. I smiled back and ran away. With every second that ticked in my mind I was one step closer to a disastrous scene. Or maybe I could prevent it. I thought, maybe I could prevent it from happening.

I didn’t mind running in the pouring rain. By the time I got to the playground, I was completely wet. Drenched. And cold. Rain drops were dripping down my cheeks. My whole appearance looked pretty frightening. To myself. No one else was around. No one. 9:30 PM.

I sat down on a bench overlooking the playground. I immediately spotted the crime scene. The potential crime scene. To make it all look worse, there was already the puddle. I swallowed. Like it was counting down the minutes. Like it was waiting for the boy. Like it was waiting to become a scene of the crime. I looked away. I didn’t want to go through it twice in half an hour. No.

I must admit, I was frightened. It was 10:00 PM and no one was around. No one but the rain. Like it was trying to melt me down. To send me home. To let things happen as they’re supposed to.

Rain drops were only getting bigger. Heavier. The only sound I could hear was the sound of the raindrops bouncing off the ground. Nothing else. This whole scenario was something new to me. I was waiting for a murder to happen. Nobody’s ever warned me about that. Instead of criminals, I was chasing the future.

The church looked obnoxious. Scary. The brick walls've lost their red gloss, turning into old, black curtains. Hiding God knows what. I didn’t even care. I just observed. There, up in the tower, I noticed a cigarette light, a smoke that was coming out in circled puffs. That area itself was pretty obscure. A lack of light made it look even more horrifying. Someone was up there. An unidentified someone.

11:00 PM. The rain finally stopped. That dreary sound of the raindrops hitting the ground was echoing through the air. Still. I was watching. And watching. Ambushing the future. Performing my personal stake out. Pathetic.

I wanted to close my eyes to this date with destiny. On every blink of the street lights, my heart was beating faster. And faster. Nocturnal animals got out of the darkness, showing their dreadful, sharp attributes in the light.

Then it hit me. All of a sudden. Like I was possessed by a demon. I saw the boy again; lying in that damn puddle, lying motionless. It never happened before. I never had the same vision played twice in my mind. Until now.

The throbbing sound of the church clock, the sound of midnight, pressed the stop button on the track that was playing in my mind. The track of my vision. I looked up. Old, Roman numerals were scratched and barely visible. One number, number 12 or XII, was partially hidden behind the pointers. Midnight.

I instantly reached for my gun. God, I held it so tight. I had to. The playground was empty. The puddle was still there. Alone, in the middle of the playground. I was so confused. I felt like someone would suddenly bludgeon me with a baseball bat. I shivered. And clutched the gun even tighter. Nothing was there. No one was there. Just a few angry clouds that hid the moon. No murder. No boy. Nothing.

I was so cold. I could barely hold my gun. On every unknown movement, on every sound, I’d pause my breathing, holding the gun as tight as I could. Even though my fingers were frozen, paralyzed from the coldness, I could feel the warmth of the gun. I held it for a long time that it had become warm.

The city that bursts with energy during the daylight, dies over the night. Like a magical, self proclaimed curfew that everybody seems to obey. Nocturnal animals were dawdling, making a weird noise. Their shadows were playing on the walls, making them look even bigger. And more frightening.

I rolled up the sleeves and looked at my watch. 12:35 AM. I didn’t know what to do. It was like rotting, while waiting for the future to come. Surely, I wouldn’t have embraced it.

I was performing my own stake out. I was afraid to leave. I was afraid of making this burden of mine even heavier. I was afraid of responsibility. Call me ignorant, call me whatever you want, but this state I’ve been in for a long time is killing me. Do you get that? Do you? I don’t need your compassion. I don’t need your sympathy. I don’t want it. I just don’t want you to judge me. Period. God. You’ve probably noticed that I call his name quite often. I don’t know why. I don’t even believe in God. I was raised Catholic though but… I don’t want to talk about that. I will just call myself suspicious. The end of this religious talk.

3:00 AM. I was still the only person around. Remaining calm. Patient. Nothing happened. I made up my mind and took off, constantly looking back. I needed caffeine. I needed something hot to warm me up. Just a bit.

Leaving the playground behind, I took one last look at the church clock. 3:22 AM. Those clouds, those moon kidnappers, finally let the moon show off its glow and brightness. And finally, they let it keep me company.