((SS5: Corin Albanesi – Continued from If you hit a wall, hit it hard.))
It was an understatement to simply say that he was afraid, he was a creature of self-doubt and he would never consider himself the grown man he wished he could be. People at home were surely criticizing him – perhaps even his own father, for leaving people that were designated pillars of safety. But with the time he had alone he was able to piece together his own thoughts; he didn’t need to think, speak or feel for anyone but himself right now. It was a relief, a guilty relief that came with fabricated ideas of Bunny just dying because he left her alone with Saachi and that unserviceable pink scooter. He knew he wouldn’t be there when the group would collapse, when he assumed that the game would just make everything Bunny had worked for until then just crumble.
He had ducked into a Diner after trying another building, taking a moment to peer into the unknown store to assure his safety. He stepped in, just shy of the entrance, and he closed his eyes a moment, just to kill the images in his head, to drown the feelings of guilt the pity and the thought that he’d likely given a girl the death sentence. He crouched in a near foetal position, letting the rifle slowly slump to the ground. He let it go for the first time since he’d picked it up, and his arms thanked him for it. It wasn’t because of the weight, but he grew tired of holding onto it so tightly. He took his time; his arms were free just to cup his face as he quietly shut his eyes and used that moment to rest idly.
He lifted his head, knowing that he could not sit there forever wallowing in fear and self-pity. From his position he could see a form on the floor, it was unclear but he had the faintest feeling that he did know what it was. It was against his better judgement, but he stood up to get a better view. The air was calm and quiet, save for his own footsteps as he moved into view. In a movie there’d be ambient music when they revealed the body, but somehow the silence made the impact worse. It was his first time seeing a body up close, one that wasn’t hidden behind police tape and tarp. It was the first one that wasn’t hidden from his view by the compacted shell of a car and the back of a frantic rescue worker, or on the television.
His stomach felt like a plummeting elevator and he felt like the occupant. His skin took on a pallor tone, but he moved even closer when he saw the colour of the bandana. They were probably meant to be friends or at the very least allies. In the end Corin didn’t know him, and he never would get to – but he assumed that if they had it met before that it might have been nice. But he was projecting what he wished onto something that technically was no longer a human; corpses could be referred to as it instead of him or her. They made people uncomfortable once the human element was gone, looking something like a ragdoll. This is what people talked about when they mentioned the phrase uncanny valley. Corin felt the same fear that he did as a child again, the one that would come when a particularly powerful wind howled in the night.
The more he looked around the more details presented themselves, a chair had fallen over next to him and Corin thought that it probably happened in his death throes. His death must have been violent, blood misted his silver bandanna. And for the moment, Corin felt both disturbed and pity for what had once been Austin White. His lips were pale, the skin purpling and what was left of the eyes was already sunken into the skull. Corin didn’t know that he was looking at a body in partial or perhaps full rigor mortis. If the climate had been warmer he might have smelled much worse, but Corin did not have enough knowledge to be certain of that. This was a person that Corin only came to know as John Doe.
It did not escape Corin that Austin still had his backpack and to Corin it seemed that there was a chance that it still had something of value tucked within. Corin didn’t move immediately, he did have qualms about taking from the deceased, but he also knew that his life was very much on the line and advantage was needed. He debated with himself internally, it was the morally bankrupt choice but logically it was the correct one. He hoped that if there was an afterlife, that Austin was not going to haunt him for this one.
“I’m sorry, John Doe.”
He ducked down to his knees, wearing a repulsed expression as he tried to lift the backpack from Austin. Working to pull it from his stiffened body, a task much more difficult than he’d initially thought it would be. He’d finally pulled it from Austin after much difficulty moving his limbs, setting it aside before lowering Austin back down. He already felt dirtied and somehow sullied, and he wasn’t sure if it was from touching Austin or from the act of stealing from him. But he felt unsettled as he dug through the contents, there was a fear that Austin would reach up and dig his pale fingernails into his flesh for his transgression, but it never came. He removed only some of the consumable items and medical supplies. He did not find a weapon, this lead him to conclude that the remote he had in his hand was what he had been given, which was a shame. He placed the half emptied bag on Austin’s chest. He felt like he should have uttered something like a prayer, but he did not know if Austin was born catholic like he was and chose against it. Corin couldn’t say he did believe a higher power anyway, not after what he was going through.
After packing he moved to leave, but hesitated. He decided to peel the Silver Bandana from Austin’s head, at the very least Corin wasn’t going to forget about this encounter just yet. Once he stood above Austin, he still couldn’t bring himself to look into what was left of his eyes. He averted his gaze and walked away, retrieving the rifle from the spot where he had left it. Austin’s bandana was tied to the butt of his rifle. If Corin tried, he could have probably returned to Bunny and Saachi, but instead he walked away from yet another Silver Scorpion and into the cold.
((Corin Albanesi – Continued elsewhere))
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The World Oyster area is made of many resteraunts in mind of all those with different tastes, both aesthetically and in the gourmet sense. Do you feel like eating Chinese fried rice, Texas steaks, or maybe a french croissant? Perhaps you enjoy the stylings of a 50’s diner, a Seattle coffee house, or even an Irish Pub? Then come on down and chow on some culture!
When The Wind Howls
- Joined: February 21st, 2014, 6:19 pm