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This is my contribution to the 2018 HALLOWEEN CONTEST. It is not a sex story. For those looking for detailed descriptions of strong, muscled bodies, or hot, steamy sex scenes, try the next one on the list; you won’t find it here.
As always I like to know how the story is received. Comments are very much appreciated (even critical ones; insulting ones not so much, though…) and I will try to react to them where applicable.
And please, vote.
All names, characters, situations and incidents portrayed in this story are fictitious. No identification with actual persons is intended or should be inferred.
It was cold. Of course, it was cold; it’s always cold. Global warming; what a scam.
Darren walked the crowded streets. Crowded, despite the gusting wind blowing ice-cold raindrops that went straight through his clothes. People seemed to like it; ‘Just need a few more things to buy, and then quickly back home; Mulled wine; Chocolate and whipped cream; In front of the fire-place!’ Idiots!
Look at those; creepy fagots! Out in the open; no wonder gay bashing is getting popular again. The only good thing is that they won’t multiply… if they’d only follow their own rules. Electrotherapy, bend or break; they shouldn’t have to exist like that. Impossible that anybody seriously wants to live a life even animals would walk away from; disgusting. ‘Shitheads’ is what Jake used to call them. An apt description.
The memory of Jake brought a grim smile on Darren’s face. Jake, his only, lifelong partner. Strictly business of course; a handshake was the only physical contact they’d ever had. No back-stabbing in any kind of way.
Another gust of wind, blowing another bucket of rain in his face, made him turn his head. And when he looked forward again, there was a dark figure in front of him that caused his heart to skip several beats. A man, dressed in a long, dark cloak, with a hood pulled over his head. Everything was dark, except for the white eye sockets, and thin, almost fluorescent red lines outlining his eyes.
His walking stick slipped out of his hand, and Darren almost followed it on its way down to the ground; just in time, the person managed to grab him by his arm.
“Sorry,” the boy stumbled. “I didn’t see you. No need to be scared; I’m only dressed up for a Halloween party. I didn’t see you, but everything is alright. You’ll be alright.”
When the boy thought that Darren was sufficiently stable to stay on his feet, he let go and picked up the walking stick from the pavement. Darren, still unable to react, automatically wrapped his hand back around the handle and squeezed it tight.
“Are you all right?” the boy asked, and Darren only nodded, allowing him to leave.
Aging sucks. Only a few years ago, he would have kicked the boy’s balls up to his throat. But now, he could only shake and hope not to triple over his own legs.
Halloween. What a crap. What’s wrong with our own traditional celebrations. Bloody commercialism. Go to hell with your wasted pumpkins, fake spider webs, and those disgusting horror-wannabees. Waste of money; waste of time. And afterward complaining, complaining, complaining. Demanding more allowance, higher salaries, additional financial support… Start doing something useful with your life!
Without further issues, Darren made it to his home. Once his fingers, numb from the cold, finally managed to turn the keys of his front-door, he shuffled into the cold hallway of his townhouse. Reluctantly, he took off his coat; it was heavy and wet, but still seemed to be warmer than the surroundings. He draped it over one of his dining chairs, attempting to keep it open as much as possible, to let it dry up a bit. No way it would be completely dry by the next morning. Not in a cold, damp house like this.
He should have stayed in his office—he wasn’t allowed to turn off the heat there, not even in his own room, so it always remained hot; all night long. What a waste!
However, it had become more and more difficult to ignore the cleaning staff. Ridiculous, being sent away by those monkeys, but that’s the way it is, these days. Gone are the good old days. There isn’t much Jake has missed, since his death. What’s worth living for these days?
Darren moved into the kitchen. Taking off his shoes now was no option; he’d have to sit down, and chances would be slim that he’d be able to get up afterward. The floor was dirty anyway, and it wouldn’t harm his tiles.
It took a while before the gas of his furnace lit with a whoosh. For a moment, Darren recoiled, but then he shook his head and put the kettle on the fire. Nonsense.
While the water was on, he warmed his hands above the kettle. Slowly, the feeling in his fingertips returned, and eventually, he was able to open up the package of noodles. When putting his tea-cup on the kitchen table, his teabag dropped on the floor. For a moment, he thought of indulging himself and taking a new one, but he restrained himself. Strong tea was more important in the mornings.
After bahis firmaları an endless time, a terrible waste of gas, the water was finally warm enough to pour over his noodles and to make his tea. The mug rattled on the tray, and for a moment Darren feared the cup with noodles would fall over—next time he would bring the kettle to the table and pour the water while sitting there. A resolution that was almost like a tradition.
For a moment, he warmed his hands on the hot noodle-package, and then he started eating. Tasteless carbon, but at least it was filling him. And it was cheap.
Slowly, allowing each spoon-full to warm his body, he finished his meal. Then he took out the teabag from his mug.
Again, his mind was playing tricks with him. His earlier encounter with that dressed-up kid had gotten onto his nerves.
In his anger, he pulled off the teabag-string while squeezing the last drops of water out of the bag; it plunged back into the hot water. What a miserable day. And it was only Tuesday; only two days since his last shower, so he wouldn’t be able to warm up either.
He lifted the disjoined bag out of his cup; of course, it was broken, and half of the tea leaves floated in the water. With gritted teeth, he sucked in the hot liquid, every now and then spitting out the leaves from his mouth.
A flash lit his effectively illuminated room. The following thunder seemed to laugh at him; at him, sitting there, cold, shivering, at his own dining table. What’s so funny…?
Reluctantly, he sieved the rest of his tea through his teeth, yet feeling disappointed when the last drop left the mug. With his tongue, his finger, he scraped the leaves off his teeth, off his gum, and flicked them back in the mug, leaving a bitter taste in his mouth. Disgusted, he looked at the drab, covering the bottom of his beaker.
Another flash; another thunderclap.
[The future looks bleak, Dar-Aban Miser!]
The mug slipped out of his hands and dropped on the table. By sheer luck, Darren managed to catch it before falling further down to the floor, preventing further damage. For a while, he held on to this mug, pushing it hard into the table, avoiding it’s rattling; calming his nerves. Bloody cold.
He brought the tray back to the kitchen, used too much water to get rid of the tea-leaves, and then prepared for bed. What good would it do, to stay awake on a day like this?
In the bathroom for a piss, the light turned off; probably a lightning stroke. Apparently, the street lights were connected to another system, as they still offered sufficient light to undress and to put on his pajamas. Light for free—something to keep in mind. Shaking and shivering, Darren slipped under the blankets. If only he wouldn’t wake up, the next morning…
[Wake up, Dar-Aban! Open your eyes! Wake up, Dar-Aban Miser!]
The sound of rattling iron filled the room. What kind of crazy party were the neighbors having at this time of the night!? In a futile attempt to mute the noise, Darren pulled up the blankets over his head.
A cackling laugh filled the room. “Is that how you welcome an old friend?”
“I have no friends!” Darren pulled the blankets even tighter around his head. Damn kid with his damn Halloween costume, giving him nightmares like this…
“Oh right; an old business-partner,” the voice corrected itself. “Always afraid to allow people to come too close. Always retreating into your own little prison of solitude.”
Suddenly, the blankets were pulled away. As hard as he could, Darren pushed his face in his pillow. But he couldn’t stop the voice from entering his head.
“I did the same. You know I did the same. Avoiding contacts, moving away from people. That’s why I liked you. We shared the same lack of interests.”
“You’re a delusion!” Darren cried. “First thing tomorrow is to make sure there’ll be a strong opinion piece about the demise of our cultural heritage by the unbridled influx of commercial nonsense!”
“Our Cultural Heritage!” the voice laughed out loud. “Like we ever cared about Our Cultural Heritage! Money is what we cared about—our money! Our money was our money, and had to stay our money. No-one was to benefit from our hard work, except ourselves. Because it was ours.”
“And that’s the way it is,” Darren muttered approvingly.
“I think you saw me as your role model,” the voice continued, “and I liked it. I recognized so much of myself in you—the drive, the greed, the selfishness. With you, I never had to worry; you looked up at me.”
“I had a great partner,” Darren replied softly. “A great example he was.”
“A great example I was,” the voice copied him. “And you were blinded enough not to question my motives and reasons. I guess that, after all those years, you still don’t want to listen to reasoning. And I hope you are stupid enough to keep following my word without questioning!”
The voice coughed, and the sounds of iron upon iron filled the room. Darren was getting even colder, and his hand blindly searched for the blankets.
“Nice pajamas,” the voice mocked. “New?”
“No, kaçak iddaa of course not!” Darren hissed. “I have had them for fifteen years now. Found them at an eviction. I recognized the quality, and it is still good enough!”
“I can see…”
Was he mocking him?
“I was wrong, Dar-Aban” the voice continued, but now in a sad voice. “I now know it was wrong to push people away; to treat them the way I treated them, and to restrain them from what they deserved. And now it is weighing heavily on me.”
This clearly couldn’t be Jake.
“It is pulling me back, Dar-Aban, and it is retaining me from moving away from my deeds. Don’t follow my example, Dar-Aban; don’t add another chain-link, another weight to my suffering; don’t end up the way I did. Change, and relieve some of my burdens.”
“Change into what,” Darren scorned. “Change into one of those hippies? Some idiot, wasting his money on charities and other nonsense? What kind of drugs …”
“Silence!!” the voice roared, making Darren tremble on his mattress. For sure, the neighbors must have heard that!
“Just keep your mouth shut, like you used to do!” the voice thundered, strong again, and demanding.
And then, suddenly softer, almost desperate, “I can’t explain this to you—I can’t make you see—but tonight there will be three spirits who can. They will guide you and open your eyes. After that, it’s up to you to keep them open. Open your eyes, open your heart, and open your wallet!”
That last sentence was all Darren needed to know for sure it was a delusion, and he slipped into an uncontrolled laughing. He kept laughing until his belly hurt and his lungs burst, and even then it didn’t stop. He kept laughing until he fainted from exhaustion.
“Well, have a look at that,” a soft, friendly voice found its way into Darren’s consciousness. “It must be hard, living a life like this.”
Annoyed by the mere suggestion that he lived this life by choice, Darren replied, “That’s what life is about. Suffering. And then you die. It has always been like that, and it will always be. There is nothing that will change life to the better.”
“Is it?” the voice questioned in the same, annoyingly ignorant way. “Are you sure it has always been like that? Shall we see for ourselves?”
“We’ll see nothing!” Darren retorted. “I’ll see you out, and that’s it. How did you get in anyway?” “I was invited by an old friend of you,” the voice answered. “Your partner; your lifelong companion. He asked me for a favor; to give you something he’d never had.”
“You can put it in the hallway,” Darren sniggered, pleased that he could recycle one of Jake’s old jokes again, “and then leave. I’ll make sure it gets discarded.”
“I think it is time to face your past,” the voice said, and again the blankets were pulled away from him. How did they even get back on his bed in the first place? He couldn’t remember retrieving them.
He felt a weight push down the mattress next to him, and then a hand play with his hair. A curt headshake was insufficient to get rid of it, and Darren pushed his old, stiff and unwilling body up.
He looked into the face of a young boy—at least, he thought it was a boy. The voice didn’t really clarify it, and also the long hair, the soft lines, and the lean body didn’t really give it away. Neither did the clothes.
“How did you get in?” Darren asked once again, uncertain what else to do. He wouldn’t be able to fight the boy, that was for sure. The boy seemed weak, but for sure, he was weaker.
“That’s of no importance,” the boy replied, with an annoying intonation decorating his voice. “A more important question is, how will I move out; or to be more accurate, how will you be, when I move out—the same, or wiser? Come! There is no time to lose! Time doesn’t stand still!”
Without realizing it, Darren took the boy’s hand and was pulled into a vortex of colors, sounds, and impressions. And then, it took a while before he realized he was sitting in a large room with children. It took even longer before he recognized the place. He wasn’t even surprised by the fact that no-one seemed to notice—even he knew his classics.
“That’s you,” the boy whispered, and by itself, Darren’s eyes moved to one of the tables.
Two boys were sitting next to each other. One, he recognized from old photos, the other he had recently… No, that’s not true.
Two young boys; seven, eight years old? The one boy he knew from the pictures moved to the other one, and whispered something in his ear, making both laugh out loud.
“Darren and Roger; could you please explain what’s so funny!?” an angry voice called out from the front of the class. The teacher.
Roger’s face turned red, and the picture-boy vehemently shook his head. “No miss, it’s nothing!”
“Enlighten us, Roger; don’t be selfish, and share the fun with the rest of the class.”
Roger’s face turned even deeper red, and his lip trembled. “N… nothing, miss. Only…”
Picture-boy obviously cringed, and then quickly filled in, “I told Roger that …”
“I clearly asked Roger. kaçak bahis Are you Roger, Darren?” the teacher snapped.
“No, miss,” Darren replied to this stupid question, “but …”
“First, you indicated you had nothing to say, so now it is Roger’s chance to speak up.” The teacher cut him down. “Go on, Roger; what did Darren say? He clearly said something; he now even confirmed that by himself.”
“He said …” Roger stuttered, “He told me … Today is Carl’s laundry-day.”
“It’s not!” a boy in front of them cried out. “That’s a lie!” but then he was silenced by the teacher. “I can handle this, Carl.
“So, tell me, Roger, why is it of importance, why is it so funny, that today would be Carl’s laundry day?”
“It is not!” the boy screamed again, but a hand-wave told Roger to proceed.
“I … He …” Roger continued stammering, “It is not …”
“Come on, bring it on! Share it with the rest of us!”
“He’s not wearing his pants today!” picture-boy-Darren blurted out, and the whole class roared in laughter; the whole class, except for three boys and an angry teacher.
“Silence!” screamed the teacher. “Silence, all of you!”
The class, not used to their teacher raising her voice like that, suddenly fell silent. The boy in front softly cried, Roger was about to cry, and the teacher’s eyes were as flames of fire, further shrinking Roger down to almost nothing.
“And you think that’s funny?” the teacher then spat to Darren, who raised his shoulders.
“Look at me; do you think that’s funny!?” the teacher repeated, a certain impotence wavering through. “What’s your interest in other people’s underwear anyway; you think it’s funny when someone doesn’t have spare-pants to use?”
“Not only me,” Darren finally replied, resulting in another, but now muffled outburst of laughing.
“Out!” the teacher cried, trembling, seething with anger. “Out, you shameless boy! Out of my eyes, and report to the director!”
Slowly, Darren got up and moved away from his table. Invisible to all others in the classroom, but not to the old Darren, his hand briefly ran over Roger’s shoulder and back.
The vision blurred, and Darren, finally able to think again, asked, “How did you do that—how did we get there?”
The young accompanying boy smiled but remained silent. And then Darren found himself at another location. A schoolyard?
Again, he could see a young boy that looked like him, walking together with Roger. They chatted and alternately kicked the stone in front of them. But when they reached the schoolyard, Darren could see the younger version of him trying to free his hand. But it was too late.
“The butt-brothers are here again,” one of the larger kids called, and with an angry gesture, the young Darren now freed his hand and pushed Roger away.
For a moment, Roger froze while Darren pushed his way through the crowd alone, receiving a few pushes and one nasty kick in his ribs. He didn’t look back.
Roger was not so lucky; once Darren had found his way through, the crowd moved around and engulfed poor Roger. They pulled his bag, his hair, his limbs, and soon he was on the ground, rolled up like a ball, being hit, kicked, and spit on. Darren looked from a safe distance, and also the supervisory teacher was in no hurry to break up the group of children. Slowly, the teacher came closer, and once he reached the edge of the hostile circle, he first took his time to check if his interference was really necessary. Then he told the kids to stop.
Probably only the outer ring heard him, and only a few of those stepped back, having no effect on the assault.
“That’s enough,” the teacher said again, a little louder, but that time no-one reacted at all.
It was unclear if it really was time, or if the headmaster thought this was enough, but before the teacher could call once more, the school bell rang, and slowly the children dispersed. Even the teacher didn’t wait to see how Roger was doing. Young Darren waited until he could see Roger crawling up again, and then he too entered the school, leaving Roger on his own.
The vision blurred again.
“Are you trying to tell me something?” Darren said, but the boy raised his shoulders.
“You tell me…”
And again, they were at another location. A street with small groups of young people clustering together. The groups were loud, probably drunk, and a slightly older Darren was among them.
Other boys were talking to him; daring him? Young Darren clearly was reluctant, but the others were persistent.
A bicyclist came in sight, causing even more unrest in Darren’s group. Darren got pushed, people called to him, but not loud enough that the person on the bicycle would hear it. And eventually, Darren seemed to give up his resistance.
When the bicycle passed the group of youths, Darren suddenly jumped out of them and pushed against the handlebar, causing the cyclist to fall over. Then, the others also got involved and kicked in on Roger; obviously, it was Roger again. Probably unseen by the others, young Darren moved out of the group, and silently walked away without looking back, while the others relentlessly kicked in on Roger. At some point, one threw the bike on top of him, which seemed to be the sign to the others that this was enough. And enough it was.
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