Death of a Writer

"…and Philip pulled the dagger from its sheath. His eyes of ebony watched as it shimmered under the moon's gentle caress. He cupped the handle of the tiny dagger in his hands, raising it into the air with all the show of an actor preparing to perform the greatest tragedy of the play. His eyes ascended to the heavens pleading with its angels and saints to give him back his joy. When naught a response came, he opened his quivering mouth and shouted: 'Juliana! Juliana! It is for you that I condemn my life!' He thrust the blade into his chest, convulsing with the sudden pain it brought to his body. As the cloak of Death began to wrap around his wounded and bleeding body, he fell to his knees. Ever so slowly, he sank to the ground, carefully sliding his muscular arms around the limp form of his beloved. It was in this position of eternal and cataclysmic love, that Philip the Wanderer and Juliana his love, slept in their eternal grave, surrounded by wilted roses."

He looks down upon the parchment, the ink absorbs quickly in its dampened surroundings, and smiles upon his work. This tale, that he had spun for many years, of great wanderings and doomed lovers had finally ended. His tragically brilliant hero had taken his life at long last, only after witnessing the death of his beloved, the end of his only reason to continue living. A tear forms in the man's eye as he recalls the muse for such an end to his favorite protagonist.

He tears his mind from the melancholy thoughts brewing in his brain, and focuses on his story once more. He reads over the final paragraph one last time, examining the words that he had spun, the emotions he had sown. Finally satisfied he brings a knife to his finger, and watches as the blood drips lazily into the bottle. When enough liquid has been collected, he dips his quill gently into the blood. He taps the tip against the rim of the bottle, so as not to have any puddles of blood forming spontaneously across the parchment. Carefully he brings the quill down to the paper, coaxing it along in tiny swoops, and acute swishes, until finally, in crimson letters, it reads:

"This has been my life, and now it ends. -Thomas Whitler."

He folds the parchment into three equal sections, flattening the folds with the tip of his thumb. The drawer of his desk is open, holding an envelope of cream in its dusty mouth. The man reaches blindly into the drawer, attempting to seize the envelope from the hungry mouth of his desk. After an intense struggle he valiantly tears the envelope from the drawer and places it next to the folded parchment. Haltingly he slips the paper into the blank envelope, wondering whether to seal away his life's work forever, or if he should find a way to get it out into the world. Finally, after weighing out the consequences and endings of each choice, he folds the top of the envelope down, and seals it tightly with wax. He rises from his chair, stretching out his arms, moving his neck from side to side, chasing away the weariness resting in his bones.

His eyes begin to wander around the room, examining the crowded tomb he calls his home. The musty atmosphere, the wooden floor full of holes and dents, the blood smeared walls, all of the defining features of his apartment brought back so many memories, most of which he wished never would have returned. As he scans the room one last time, his eyes focus on a figure lying on the bed. Her face is pale and cold, her eyes of cobalt are lifeless, her lips blue. A silent sob shakes his body, as he reaches his quivering hand towards the limp form on the bed.

He forces his mind back to the task at hand, and turns back to his mahogany desk, cluttered with books, quills, paper, and most importantly the envelope. His head cocked to the side, he stares at the envelope, daring it to move or better yet, disappear. It commits to neither act. He reaches down and picks up the blank pocket of paper, running his calloused fingers along its edges. Slowly the envelope glides into the pocket of his jacket, nestling snugly against the cotton fabric.

His lips move in a rhythmic, yet silent prayer, as he draws a dagger from the desk drawer. Imitating the movements of his hero, he raises the blade into the air, pleading with some unseen force to bring back his love. When nothing but a stream of dust answers his plea, he opens his mouth and states bravely:

"Jazelyn! Jazelyn! It is for you that I condemn my life!"

He brings the end of the dagger to his left wrist, and hand shaking, proceeds to slit the vein open. He then switches the dagger to his other hand, and slits the wrist of his right arm. Soon he will be with her once more, in the land he wove for her from the words of his heart. Nothing will stop him from rejoining her now, nothing.

He crawls across the floor, blood staining everything he touches, until he reaches the bed of his love, Jazelyn. With all the strength left in him, he heaves himself onto the bed. His arms snake around her waist, as his lips brush over her lifeless mouth.

Together they lay, Thomas Witler and his beloved Jazelyn, in their eternal grave surrounded by vases of wilted roses.