The end

He knew that they were close to the Underworld because the mist started to disappear. He realized that the boy was trembling. Was it the right decision? Those traces on the stone told him that it was. The only thing that he had to do was that Radamantis jugded the boy. A chill went thorugh his back when he feels Cerberus’s eyes on him, also, it was showing his sharp teeth. The boy startled and looked at him, worried. He tried to smile, he wanted to let him know that everything was alright… or that was what he wanted to think.

Cerberus’s roars and barks can be listened to the entire Underworld’s entrance. He helped the boy to leave the boat. He couldn’t help but remember the first time that Caronte had left him there all alone and confused. He put his hand on the shoulder’s boy, calling in that way his attention. He smiled again and pointed out the door.

—I’m scared, I shouldn’t have accepted it. I don’t have money. Caronte comes back after many time to take with him the people who do not have money, maybe I should have waited a little longer.

—I’ll go with you if you feel more confident.

The boy doubted for a moment but finally he nodded, with a weak smile. There was something that worried him, maybe it was Cerberus’s agressive attitude, or it could be the boy’s fear itself. He tried to clear his mind while his hands opened the door.

Anything had changed since the last time that he was there: the big courtyard, the rivers, the palace at the background and the thrones. His eyes was on Radamantis, who sat up and came closer. He looked at the boy, who took a step back. It was clear that he wanted to run away.

—I bring another soul, you can judge him.

Radamantis looked at both of them, frowing. He didn’t remember that serious face and neither the tense atmosphere when he was judged.

—Oh, I see. Let’s judge.

He looked at the boy; he was pale and his body started trembling. He realised the tears that starting to fall on his cheeks. His legs faltered and fell on the floor, and at the same time, he asked for help. He looked at Radamantis, which face did not show any emotion. In that moment, the boy took a breath, coming back to Earth. He tried to get up, but his legs did not respond him. Radamantis knelt in order to help him, putting his hands on the boy’s shoulders.

—You have a kind heart… Come on, drink a bit of water.

Radamantis gave him a glass of water. The boy took it with his flickering hands and drank.

—Such a pity that you cannot pay your trip –the glass fell on the floor, breaking into pieces. The boy put his hands on his head-. I condemn you to spend the rest of your days wandering around Lethe’s river, without knowing who you are.

—No!! Wait! Caronte had brung souls that didn’t have money.

—Exactly. Caronte can do it, but who do you think you are to do the same thing? You’re nobody here, you just fullfil a work in order to clean your soul and now your soul is dirty because you have disobeyed the rules… I condemn you to the Tartarus.

The last thing that he saw was that miserable boy looking at him, his  only mistake was to trust him. He didn’t know who he was, neither where he was and what he was thinking of. And, suddenly, he was no longer in that courtyard, but at home, surrounding by his family, whose dead bodies were on the floor, spotted with blood. He saw his hand. He was holding a knife spotted also with that scarlet liquid, and he can watch that boy wandering the Lethe’s edges, without knowing who he was.

—Your sentence is going to be reviving your first trial but, this time, you are going to kill your family, and each time that you look at your knife, you’ll see that poor boy who trusted you, who has been condemned  to the forgotten hell by you.

And he knew it. He would never be in peace. He was condemned to live in that hell forever and ever.

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Image by OlliSiponkoski

If you want to read the rest of the short story:

  1. The beginning of the end
  2. The trial of the end
  3. The last act of kindness
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Equilibrium

You jump into the void.

That is what you have done your whole life, but you are tired.

You are tired that everything goes wrong while you are walking in zigzag on a thin spider web. If you take a step too soon, everything falls. If the thin thread breaks, everything falls. . Still, you cling to it, believing that it is more a memory than a reality, wondering what your destination is.

Then, you stop and look around. You do not see anything. You are alone. Because, while you were trying to keep your direction, everything has been destabilized. And it leaps into the void before you, like pieces of broken ice becoming into a downpour.

You walk further, but your legs tremble. In that huge void surrounded by silence and darkness, you wonder when you listened to your last heartbeat. And what about the first one? You never realized it when you were alive. You never thought that it could stop. You just keep your way without thinking in nothing else.

Now, it rains. It rains everywhere. But you do not know how to remember the sound of the water. And it falls, with everything that you are, with everything that you were and with what you will never be.

You immerse yourself in the gold rain, you look up and two swords pierce your eyes: the reality. It wakes you up, scratches your face and burns you. You stand there, bleeding and in silence. You are burning; the water burns you and drowns you. The smoke fills your lunges, you breath the dust that is in the air.

You lose yourself within it. It buries you. And you finish even when you have not yet started.

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The last act of kindness

He gave up rowing, and the boat was being rocked by the river, driving him without direction. His eyes looked at the dark waters while he wondered why he had to give up for fighting for his life. His mother’s smile started to invade his memories, his father’s laughs started to be listened over the sound of the water… why had he done that? He tried to look for an answer, but he was not able to find it.

He raised his sight, hopeless, looking at the empty edge. He remembered when he opened his eyes for the first time and found himself in a place like that. He remembered the doubts and the fear… how long had it been since he was there? A suddenly he felt an impulse, and he started to row in order to arrive at the edge. He needed to walk on land. He needed to be in a place that was not that cave guarded by Cerberus. He could not help but feel relief when he was out of the boat.

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He started to walk, leaving behind the boat, wanting to forget the work that he was obligated to accept. Was peace really hard to find? That meant to be dead, right? He sighed, knowing that all those questions did not have answers. So, he kept walking on the edge, with the sound of the water surrounding him. Nevertheless, a big rock called his attention. He got close to it, realizing the thousands of lines that were on it. He touched it, noticing the rugosity.

«Are you interested in the meaning of the lines?»

He startled at the sound of that voice behind him. He turned back, finding a young man out who smiled and was taller than him. The boy got closer, took a stone and drew another line on the rock.

«Each line represents a day. I do this in order to count the days since I arrive here».

«Caronte has not come yet?»

«You are in Cocytus, the people that you find in this river are those who do not have the amount of money in order to pay Caronte».

Suddenly, he understood the situation. He looked at him again, realizing how his face looked like it was dead. The young man smiled again, squeezing the stone in his hand.

«Wandering for eternity is not as bad as it sounds».

However, he did not believe him. His voice sounded sad. Too sad. His smile did not show any kind of happiness, in fact, it was full bitterness. The young man sat, putting his back on the rock, hugging his long legs, staring Cocytus’ river.

«I do not care if I have to wander eternally… There are worse punishments than this, like forgetting who you are, isn’t it? At least, I know who I am and who I was. I have my own memories that are by my side, no matter what… There are a lot of people who are condemned to star at Lethe’s river, do you know what it means? Oblivion. If you drink of its waters, you forget who you are… No. It is not so bad to stay here».

Why had people to stay here, wandering, just because they did noy have a coin? That was something that he could not understand. Perhaps death did not turn people into equals.

«I can help you. I can take you there so you can put an end to everything».

Suddenly, he was again on the boat, rowing with that guy who looked at the edge while his hands squeezing the stone. And, for the first time since he came to the Underground, he smiled. Finally, he felt that he was doing something good. What could be wrong with that?

Image by nighty

Blinking

Everything changes in a blinking.

At the beginning, we are brave. We sink in the oceans that the rain creates on the floor, we burn down the streets in order to face up the fire. We’re not afraid of crying if we fall, because immediately we rise, even if we believe that we have all the time in our hands. Hands cover of wounds of war; they’re not important, we always have a Guardian Angel who heals them.

Our battles fight off bombs and water guns, and the conflicts are resolved with kisses and hugs. They last a couple of hours, maybe a day. However we prefer to laugh. We don’t build walls to isolate ourselves nor to destroy ourselves; the walls are canvas that are used to paint our dreams.

Because we don’t dream when we are sleeping, we never want to go to sleep, we are never tired… we want to keep living a little more, taking advantage of those ephemeral moments even if we don’t know that they will end in a blinking.

But we must close our eyes for a moment, And, when we open them, everything has changed.

Our Guardian Angel has abandoned us and nobody heals our wounds, they are no longer made of mud, they don’t heal in a day. The floor is made of pavement, the place where the world ends and keeps our feet tied.

We don’t fly anymore, we don’t conquer volcanos or universes, we walk carefully, afraid of what we can find around the corner. The time comes to an end, slipping through our fingers and is never enough.

We accumulate battles and we don’t win any of them, because we don’t want to fight and give up. Suddenly we stop, without taking another step, without wanting to know what’s on the other side

Because on the other side there is just a white wall with our dreams painted on it, now unrecognizable for those eyes that look at them.

We dream. We always dream. But, when we open our eyes, everything has changed.

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Inspired in the poem 1910 written by Federico García Lorca.

 

 

The trial of the end

He had lost track of time. He did not know how long had passed since he was in that boat, rowing, looking at Caronte, who scrutinized him, smiling from time to time, while a dense fog surrounded them.

After a while, his mind went white when he saw the Underworld’s entrance, where the fog started to clear. The boat entered in that cave which was flanked with two statues, whose faces were already decayed due to the pass of time. Barely, he could assimilate what it was happening when he saw a big dog, with three heads, showing all his fangs, looking at him with his six yellow eyes and revealing his tail, which shushed because it was a snake. His body trembled and, yet he forced himself to keep rowing.

Caronte made him get off the boat, leaving him alone while he came back to his job. He looked at the place; he could see the different rivers that existed in the Underworld. He could feel how Cerbero’s eyes were on him.

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He observed the stone stair that was in front of him. It led to a large door. He supposed that this was his destiny, so he decided to put an end to everything. What was beyond that door?

He closed his eyes while his hands pushed the door, opening it. An icy breeze hit him so he held his breath for a moment. However, nothing happened. Little by little, he opened his eyes. He was surprised because he found a big patio, surrounded by the different rivers and, in the background; there was a dark, large palace. In the center of the patio, there were three thrones in which three old men, dressing white tunics, were sitting. The one, who was sitting at the right, stand up, without taking his eyes off him.

“Welcome to the Hades. I am Radamantis and I will judge your soul.”

Suddenly, his life’s memories started to invade his mind. He threw his hands up in horror, feeling how the pain started to punch his body. He fell down to the flood, resisting the urge to scream. He looked at him, ready for begging to stop, but he was no longer in that patio. Instead, he was at home, surrounded by his family. He could not help but smile until he realized that every one of them were covered by the blood. He started to feel the lack of oxygen. He tried to reach his mother, touching her hand, feeling that it was cold.

I have killed them.

Radamantis was there, in front of him, looking at him with his inexpressive face. Again, the images began to appear in his retinas, the sounds began to penetrate in his ears. He could see how that man had killed every member of his family. He could hear their hopeless screams, their requests.

Everything stopped and the only thing that he was able to see was the knife that was in front of him.

“Will you kill me?”

His body did not answer, he could only look at Radamantis with his eyes filled with tears while he felt heartbroken, he felt the anger and the hated mixing with his blood, going across his body. He focused on the knife that was in front of him. He looked at it for a moment without understanding anything. He could kill him. He could be carried long and got revenge. He took the handle… But he was not able to lift it.

No. You are not able to do it.

He heard a snap and came back to reality. He was again on the patio. There was no longer a knife in front of him, only Radamantis was there.

“Interesting. Let me explain. This was a test in order to judge your soul through your actions. Your family is ok. I think that you do not deserve to come back to the Asphodel Meadows so soon. You do not deserve to go to the Tartarus… Oh, I see. You will do a job in order to clean your soul and then… I will decide.”

This was how, after that trial, he was again in that boat, rowing, going out from the Underworld, under Cerbero’s look, which showed him his fangs. His work? Taking souls to the Underworld. What would it be his upcoming trial? Would he be able to rest?

Image by jbrown67

Ice

Today, as every morning, you ask me the same question: who are you? Who am I? I would like to laugh in your face: with that gaunt face, lazy eyes and crooked lips. You, with your dirty clothes of the last night, shuffling and blurred vision, you ask me who I am. I should be the one who asks. What would you answer me? Would you recognize yourself? I know that sometimes you even do not remember your name.

But you do not know who I am, you are not interested in remembering me. You are not interested in looking back, in reliving failed dreams, the shed tears, the heartbreaking shouts, and the forgotten loneliness. You prefer to drown yourself in a clinking glass with tow ices, to pretend that you have fun with boisterous laughs and to sleep soundly in the nights, on the floor or in the bed, in a house that it is not your home. Because you have lost everything. You have lost me.

Don’t you care? No, you do not care because you do not know me. You do not know that I am able to tie a rope around your neck or to aim the gun to your head. I have the courage that you do not. For that reason, you have forgotten me.

I, with the well-dressed tie, with the perfect shirt, with a sincere smile, I look at you every morning and reproach you what you have become. Because in some place under your skin, I am still important to you. After all the wasted nights, the clarity comes, the oasis in the desert, the chair in which you rest your feet in order to not drown yourself, the deflected bullet that does not reach its destination. And there, there we are, facing each other, trying to recognize us, wondering in what we have become.

Because you always wanted to be me and I never bore to be you. For this reason, you have forgotten me; for this reason, I never give up.

Who are you?, you will wonder every day facing the mirror. And you will never find the answer. Because both, you and I, are lost in the time. Just look at yourself, look at me. Who is who? Look at us: we are pathetic.

It does not matter the answers. You will remember me just an instance every morning. Then, when the night comes back, I will be just a drop more in your melted ices.

Inspired in the poem Contra Jaime Gil de Biedma, by Jaime Gil de Biedma.