That was the only warning I had time to make before all of my cargo fell onto the wet ground. Oh great. Those were the last of the pieces of metal still usable. I grumbled under my breath as I bent down and picked up the debris. As if Mother Nature wanted to piss me off even more, a chilly breeze swept a portion of the pieces down the hill. I glared at the sky above before I walked heavily towards my prize. With exaggerated steps, I bent down again and quickly shoved the remaining pieces in my coat. I sighed dramatically before I made my way towards my intended destination.
I arrived at a run downed garage. I carefully closed the rotten door and made sure the locks were done correctly. It wasn't like there was anyone around to break into this poor excuse of a lair, but it was good to keep up a habit. It was what kept you sane in a world depleted of life. I leaned against a wall and sighed. I didn't even know how I was alive or even why, but I owed it all to one person; my mother. She was the most amazing woman I have ever met, given she was the only woman that I have ever seen. Mother used to tell me stories about life before the Great Event; children would run around playing round their mothers, as the adult females would shop around and men would converse with each other. That sure seemed like quite the life. As I looked around me, all I saw was a cold world where only the strongest survived. Mother Nature was our worst enemy here. It has been this way since I was growing up. And even after 17 years, nothing has changed.
I always wondered what it would have been like; growing up with other kids and actually having two parents. My father died during the initial stage of the disaster. Every time I tried to talk to mother about him, she would just shut up and wondered off in her own mental world. Eventually, I just gave up asking her as I knew it would have been no use. Every once in a while without even my questions, I would see her just lying still, her chocolate eyes would host such sadness. Even though I never knew my father, I figured he must have been a great man for mother to miss him so much. I felt it for her; she went through so much yet she still remained a strong woman. Even though I'd never admit it, I really admired her. Hell, if she managed to keep us alive for all this time, we could have accomplished anything. Still, not everything lasted forever.
I snapped myself out of dreamland, and resumed my focus on my tasks. I arranged the metals neatly on a cold table, and organized them into sections. I took the good parts and threw away the broken ones. I walked towards an object covered with a drape. I slid it off, which revealed my most prized possession: an electric blue BMW S1000RR with customized wheels and a fuel pump corporator that squeezed the fuel in to make this baby go way faster. I spent months looking around for extra parts to add to my fine looking piece of metal. You could say it was the equivalent of being my girlfriend, as there are no other females around to score with. I snorted: yeah buddy, not getting laid is the least of your worries now.
Truth be told, sex didn't really come to my mind, as it usually would have for other males. According to mother, a lot of males saw women as baby machines or just tools to use for when they need to take care of their "needs". If the woman got pregnant, those sick bastards would have just left them, which rendered the soon to be mothers vulnerable and helpless. The thought of those men make me sick. You couldn't just seduce a woman to make her fall in love with you, and then take away her innocence only to abandon her once bored! If I ever saw that happen, I would have punched the man. Women deserve more respect than that. And the way people did it back then, like barbarians. Making love is a special moment for a man and a woman to become one, and eventually create new life. People shouldn't have taken it for granted.
I shook my head. Great, I sounded like a grumpy elderly. Well, I couldn't have helped it if I was raised by a woman who held those beliefs. They tend to stick to you too. Mother said that if people were still around, I would have had girls running after me. I just rolled my eyes and chuckled a bit. It seemed girls back then were crazy for guys with blond hair and blue eyes. Truth be told, I wished I had brown hair; that way, I would have look more like mother. And besides, blond hair made me feel too feminine, as weird as it sounded. I envied brunettes: they looked so badass and mysterious, while I looked like some guy just asking to be put in a tutu. When I asked mother about her preference of men, I was surprised to hear her say blond with blue eyes. After asking why and explaining my reasons, she just laughed and said: "Because they are calm men, in general. Imagine having to deal with another me." I seconded that phrase, and then shut my mouth.
As I was fixing my bike, I heard the door open which brought in some of the cold air, before it was shut. As there were only 2 known survivors, I didn't need to look up to know who it was. As I was focused on my work, I only heard something be put down, before footsteps made their way towards me. From the corner of my eye, I could see worn out heavy boots that were dirty from the slush outside. I quickly finished what I was doing before I got up and brushed off dust. As expected, mother was standing there with her arms crossed, a look of amusement was present on her face. Her brown eyes twinkled in the dim light. There were so beautiful…
Her angelic voice freed me from my trance.
"You certainly are obsessed with that bike. By the way, you have some grease on your cheek."
She walked over, took out an old but clean rag, and wiped the black substance off. I blinked, and then looked away as I blushed madly. God, I felt like a child. I heard her giggle, and looked back. Her eyes were really beaming with joy and… love.
She reached up and ran her delicate fingers through my wild hair.
"It feels just like yesterday when you were still a baby and I twirled you around in the air. You were really adorable back then, and now you grew up into a handsome young man." Her expression saddened a bit. "I just wished we had a girl for you."
"Mom, we both know you are the only woman for me."
"Now now, don't make this an Oedipus tragedy."
I slightly paled in remembrance of the Greek play. I made a disgusted face, but that only made mother laugh harder. My cheeks were bright red, and I slightly glared at the ground before a small smile formed on my face.
"Guess I get my looks from dad, eh?"
Mother stopped laughing abruptly, and I felt my heart stop for a second. Shit, I kept forgetting that anything to do with my father was taboo. I look around, perspiration began to form around my temples. My heart started to race and I stuck with playing around with my fingers as I tried to calm my nerves. Great, talk about awkward.
I felt a small tug at my sleeve. I glance up and saw mother's hand on it, her head pointed downwards. I got worried. Barely able to hear, I saw her lips mumble something about needing to talk to me. Oh great, I was gonna get a lecture. I sighed internally, but nonetheless allowed mother to guide me towards the old couch.
I sat down across from her and she leaned forward, her face pressed against her hands. I heard her take a deep breath before she looked up at me with an unrecognizable expression. I subconsciously swallowed and tried to control my fast breathing. She began.
"Sweetie, I know I've had strange behavior over the years every time your father was mentioned." She then sighed and looked at me with an incomprehensible expression. "Well the truth is, he wasn't your father."
"Uh, what?" I replied stupidly.
Mother seemed nervous; her hands trembled and she bit her lips.
"Yes, and I am not your biological mother."
Now that felt like a slap in the face. At first, I didn't comprehend what she said, but of course my brain put the parts together and I was left there staring at her in shock. I felt the blood rush to my temples, and my head pounded. My vision went blurry as I felt like throwing up. She continued.
"I found you inside a destroyed restaurant. I have no idea how you ended up there, or how you even survived, but I took you in, and raised you as my own son." She took my head and forced me to look at her. Her eyes held desperation. "Enrique, despite you not being my birth child, I still consider you as my son and love you so. Nothing will ever change that. I hope that your feelings haven't changed either." Her voice seemed rather unsure by the end.
I was still in shock, thus I couldn't answer. This woman, the only human being around that I have learned to call my mother, was actually just a stranger? I couldn't believe; I refused to!
Suddenly, I felt anger boil within me, something I wasn't used to. My blood felt like hot lava flowing through my veins. I just wanted to punch something!
Moth…this stranger looked at me worriedly. She put her hand on my knee, but I snapped it away. Hurt flashed across her face. Good; after all the lying she did, I wanted to hurt her so badly.
I finally looked up and gave her the nastiest look I could. The hurt turned to pain as tears formed in her eyes. A feeling of satisfaction overwhelmed me.
"Stop it." I snapped at her.
She closed her mouth obediently. My fists shook as I struggled to calm myself. Gradually, I managed to calm my breathing before I composed my face. I looked up at the woman blankly.
"I can't' believe you lied to me. Why bother telling me all this now?"
She seemed to be at a loss of words.
"Because I felt like you had the right to know."
Yeah, the hell I did. A little too late woman.
I glared at her before I continued. "This changes everything you realize that? I can't trust you anymore, hell; you're like a stranger to me. For the sake of our survival, I'll still help you out, however, don't you dare call me your son. Only a bastard would be the offspring of your lying ways."
I automatically felt guilty after I saw tears stream down her face, softly at first, but then they rushed down like a waterfall. I couldn't take in the sight of her, so I abruptly got up and made my way towards the door, and slammed it behind me.
Immediately, the cold air hit my exposed face, and I quickly covered it with the sorry excuse of a scarf. I ran blindly as I tried to find some cover from the harsh winds. Accidentally, I slipped on some ice, and fell into a ditch. I swore and cried out in anger. It was way too much too to have taken in all at once!
As I was catching my breath, I heard a growl come from the opposite side. A four-legged creature entered the blizzard and stopped. I narrowed my eyes to see better, but the blasted wind kept on attacking them with small pieces of razor ice. I rubbed them before another growl filled the silence. One by one, more figures arrived, each howled in the loud wind. My eyes widened in realization: it was a wolf pack!
I stood up and went into a defensive position. I took out a blade that I carried around for cutting material. I never used it to kill anything before, but I was sure it would shed some blood.
The wolves slowly made their way towards me, the pack leader was right in the middle. My grip around the knife tightened as I prepared myself to fight. The wolves snapped their jaws at me, and exposed their lethal teeth. I began to growl myself in an attempt to intimate them. Of course, my attempt at acting aggressive completely failed and I was still at risk of being lunch for these dangerous creatures.
The pack leader growled at me before it launched itself at me. I dove to the side, and quickly recovered from the move. Once focused, I realized that the other wolves were watching from the sides while their leader circled around me. Great; it was the fight for who was tough dog.
I wiped the sweat from my head, and twirled the knife in my palm. Again, the wolf jumped towards me. I sliced my knife through the air, and managed to scratch its stomach. The alpha wolf licked at its wound before it growled at its members. The others began circling around me and growled simultaneously, clearly with the intent to kill me.
One by one, the minor wolves began attacking me. I managed to draw blood from some, but that only seemed to anger them more, rather than injure them. Before I knew it, I got knocked from behind, which caused me to fall face first into the cold snow. My only weapon fell a few feet in front of me. I tried to get up only to have several bodies pressing in my back. I heard them howl as they finally won their prey. I closed my eyes, as I prepared to accept my fate. A sudden thought of… that woman popped into my mind. I never meant what I said earlier, and I deeply wished that I could have taken it all back.
Suddenly, the excess weight was pulled off of me and I heard someone grunting as the wolves focused their attention on the new arrival. I was so out of it that I was hardly able to comprehend what happened. I slowly got on my knees and lifted my head up. Amazingly, I saw her standing in a defensive position with a large combat stick firmly kept in both hands. She glanced at me.
"Are you alright?"
I nodded, completely stupefied. Even after everything I had said, she still came back and was risking her life for me. Said woman nodded in relief. She focused her attention back on the wolves.
"Enrique, get out of here. I'll hold them off. Whatever you do, don't stop running, no matter what."
I was shocked.
"The hell that I'm gonna let you fight them all by yourself!" This was ridiculous!
Her teeth gritted together.
"I didn't ask you to do this. Like it or not, I'm still your mother and I'm the damn only one you've got. Now listen to me and get your ass out of here!"
Reluctantly, I got up and gestured to run, when I turned around. Her eyes locked with mine; they held a determined look.
"Go!" With that, the wolves began to attack again. For a moment, I was frozen as I saw her fight those creatures so swiftly and with no fear shown. One of them managed to claw at her arm. Her scream woke me from my trance and the sight of her blood oozing onto the ground developed an anger deep within.
I jumped into the scene and began to attack the wolves as well. She looked back at me.
"What are you doing? Get out of here!"
I glared as the wolves kept attacking.
"As if I'll let you here by yourself. You're too old for that." I slightly smirked at my comment.
She, however, found it shocking before she computed that I would have stayed no matter what. We stood with our backs against each other, and watched intently as the carnivores stalked towards us. One after another, the furry creatures leaped at us, and one after another we managed to push them away, with the occasional injury caused.
After what seemed like an eternity, we came out as the victors, the bodies of the predators lying still on the white snow. I sat down and breathed heavily. Phew. That was way too close. If it weren't for mother… I mentally flinched before I looked at said woman. Our conversation from earlier came into mind and the guilt engulfed me in giant waves. I opened my mouth but quickly shut now as I did not know what to say. I acted like a jackass earlier; I wouldn't have blamed her if she didn't want to talk to me.
Once I gathered courage, I walked up towards her before she whipped around frantically.
"Look out!" She cried.
I looked up and saw the dark outline of one of the wolves launch at me. Before I knew it, another figure jumped in front of me, and pushed me back. I heard a whine before thud noises, and then everything went quiet. For a moment, I dared to not move, but then I forced myself up and looked around. Surely enough, it was the alpha wolf, only that time it was truly dead.
Son of a bitch, I thought.
I realized that mother wasn't around and I frantically looked around me. On the other side of the narrow way, I saw a figure lying still head down. My blood went cold and I immediately ran to it. I turned her over and felt like a knife stabbed my heart by what I saw. The once beautiful and flawless woman was bruised and covered in scabs. Blood ran down her face and from a deep wound on her neck. She tried to talk, only to have blood foam in her mouth. The emotional knife within me twisted which made my insides recoil in pain. I felt hot, stinging tears form in my eyes. I wiped the clutches of hair that stuck to her face. She began to cough violently, and blood dripped from the corner of her lips. I held the back of her head tightly.
"Lie still. I need to stop the bleeding, but all the materials are back at the garage. I can still save you!" Truth be told, I didn't really know if I could, but I felt that it was best convincing myself that I could.
She smiled weakly at me before another violent outbreak of coughing erupted. More blood washed up, and I felt her breathing got weaker by the minute. My heart raced faster and I began to panic.
"Please, stay still. I can still save you." I allowed the tears to wash down my face as I didn't care anymore. Mother managed to lift one bloody hand to wipe the salty water away. I took a hold of her hand and held it, my eyes shut tightly. No, that wasn't how it was supposed to end! I should have been in that position, not her! Especially after everything I had said… It was unfair!
Her lips moved, but I couldn't hear what she said. Bringing my ears closer, I managed to hear.
"Even after everything, you're still my son. I love you…" I felt her hand slide down slowly before it went limp. I looked at her face and saw that it was tilted to the side, her eyes were blank and stared into nothing.
I felt as if my heart had stopped. For a few minutes, I just laid still. Abruptly, I grabbed her head by both sides and brought her close to me.
"Mom. MOM! Wake up! God damn it, you can't die! Don't leave me all alone! I love you." I hugged her body tightly, my own shook violently as I cried uncontrollably. For a while, I just sat there as I held her corpse close to me. I cried until eventually the tears dried out. Even when another snow storm began to blow through, I still sat in the same position.
I felt so numb and empty. I had lost the only thing that kept me alive. Without her, I couldn't live. I didn't want to. What I would have given to be with her again.
Speaking of, I had an idea. Not one that I would have ever considered before, but at that moment, it seemed like the only thing I could do.
I reached into mother's side pocket and picked out a tool blade. I flipped it open and stared at the blade .It was short, but fairly sharp. It would do the job. I looked back at mother, and caressed her face tenderly before I placed a kiss on her forehead.
"I'll see you soon mom."
With that, I sliced both of my wrists. I slightly winced at the sharp pain, but then I felt at peace as my life fluid slowly drained out of me. I felt my conscious slip, the tempting blackness overwhelmed me. As I laid down dying, my spirit seemed at rest as a smile formed on my face. For the first time in my life, I felt alive…