Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Rain, Civil War

By now they were completely soaked through. The other mourners that bothered to make the trip here from the church had hurriedly scurried away as soon as the preacher's book snapped shut. Life would not yet go on for these two men, however. They were waiting for a glacier, cold and creeping, that would finally catch up to them after countless years.

"Well what are you waiting around here for?" Albert asked his brother. "She's in the ground. It's over. Go back to Vermont. Go home." He didn't look up as he spoke. He just said his part and waited.

"I'm waiting for you, Albert." Michael responded. "We can't just..." He looked around, looked up at the sky. Globes of water exploded on his glasses. "This is ridiculous. We can't leave it at this. I need..."

He stopped short and grimaced while Albert smoldered, gaze unwavering from the headstone. He studied his brother with swelling eyes one last time, as if something would be different, as if the glacier's course could be diverted at the last second. Finally, he succumbed. Finally, he had no choice but surrender. Finally, he let the words go...

"I need you to forgive me."
For a moment they simply stood; silent and still. The wind and the rain heralded the glacier's arrival with their swirling, swelling static. It crept into the world, filling it with a killing chill.
Ultimately, Albert broke the silence. The only way out was through. His hands became fists.

"How dare you!" he said through teeth clenched with rage. "It was all your fault! Everything was!"

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