He Has To Go

Here’s a little thing I wrote for a competition a few years ago. Let’s dust it off and see who likes it and who doesn’t; shall we?

Fergus gazed over the sparkling expanse of the Persian Gulf. From his vantage point, high above The Atlantis, Palm Hotel in Dubai, he could take in the marvel of the palm-shaped manmade islands. His face broke into a mad grin as he experienced the exhilaration of flying. His dozens of airplane and helicopter flights paled in comparison to soaring above the glittering landscape on his nuclear powered electric flying bicycle. He knew he’d never wait in security queues or exchange boarding passes for a seat again!

A quick glance at his wrist told him it was time. After months of surreptitious watching, he knew the man’s habits as well as he knew his own. Everyone knows about doppelgangers, but Fergus was shocked when he first saw him. He’d been looking in a shop window at television sets after his died in the middle of a particularly exciting episode of Whirlybirds, an old black and white adventure series. At first he thought it was his reflection staring back at him, but then the man moved quickly out of sight.

Why had he moved so quickly? Was he trying to hide from Fergus? The malignant seed of suspicion was planted and grew as he saw the man every day. Suspicion grew into mistrust, evolving into a plan to get rid of the interloper. He didn’t belong. He had to go. With the idea firmly established he had only to plan the deed.

Fergus landed the bicycle on the roof. Time was passing quickly. He had to get to the beach before the stranger arrived. He watched the sunset every night from the same desolate stretch of rocks. This would be his last sunset.

 Sitting on the bench a few hundred feet away, the Voice of Reason returned. “Why do you want to harm that man? He’s never done one thing to you, Fergus!”

“True, he hasn’t. But he’s up to no good I tell you. Why is he always in the same place as me, looking as much like me as I do myself, even down to the very clothes on his back? Answer me that and I’ll be off quick as a wink!”

Voice of Reason fell silent. “Sure he’s quiet; he didn’t have a leg to stand on, did he? Ah, there comes the devil now. Just let him get settled in his place and I’ll be behind him before he knows it!”

 Fergus reached around furtively and slipped the knife neatly below the rib cage and gave a quick upward thrust, just nicking the aorta. He felt an odd sympathetic pain as the blade did its work. Holding him close, he could feel the man’s life force leaving him. Why was he feeling weak, too? He dropped the limp body to the ground.

“I’ll just have a quick lie down. The heat of the day must’ve gotten to me. Just for a minute. What’s all this wetness on my shirt? It’s sure to be seen on the way home!”

**********

New Yesterdays is at Amazon. For signed copies with free pick up or shipping, email me at theolbigjim@gmail.com and we’ll get one in your hands right away!

About Ol' Big Jim

Ol' Big Jim, has been a storekeeper, an embalmer, a hospital orderly, a medical biller, and through it all, a teller of tall tales. Many of his stories, like his first book, New Yesterdays, are set in his hometown of Piedmont, Alabama. For seven years, he lived in the oldest continuously inhabited city in the world, Amman, Jordan where he spends his time trying to visit each one of the thousands of Ammani coffee shops and scribbling in his ever-present notebook. These days, you can find him back stateside, still filling notebooks.
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