Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Behind You
Possibly Triggering - The Watch (Short Thing)
This is very short, it can't even properly be called a short story. Regardless of that, it's still one of my favourite things I've written recently.
The pocket watch sat on the table, ticking efficiently on. The dim light in the room shined brightly on it's reflective glass surface, concealing the time shown beneath. The man sitting behind the table poked at it with a jittery finger, his passive face hinting at a great river of misery in his heart. Next to the the drink was a glass. There was a faded Jack Daniel's logo on the side, it's clear letters coloured a dark brown by the liquid inside the glass.
The man picked it up, slowly, as if the glass were very heavy, and drank from it. When he slammed it back down onto the scuffed coffee table, it was empty. He grimaced as the harsh taste of the alcohol covered his tongue and throat. Once that had subsided into the familiar warmth inside his stomach, the man picked up the bottle of Jack Daniels from the floor and refilled the glass.
He looked at the liquid with a look that betrayed not one emotion, but many conflicting emotions. In his eyes there was hate, regret, anger, and desire. With a sharp edged sigh, he placed a hand on his cold brow and rubbed at it gently. There was a lingering headache in his mind, one that was too shy to come to the fore, but just sat there, stinging him with it's silver claws. Still the watch ticked, maddeningly, filling the room with it's tinny sound. He looked up at it again and picked it up, hastily, as if he planned to throw it in a fit of anger. But he did not throw it, he looked at it, his green eyes filling with tears.
The man took a deep breath and tossed the watch back onto the table, obviously not caring about the watch or the table it landed so heavily on. His hand once again found the glass, but he did not drink from it straight away. Instead he peered closely into the almost opaque liquid, his eyes tracing the light dancing across its swirling surface. After a few seconds had passed, he drank from it, more tentatively this time. He knew he was stalling, but he couldn't help it. His mind was taunting him, parading his tired, tattered life before his mind's eye, trying to push him into seeking comfort in the arms of black oblivion.
The man's heart was split and indecisive, each side yelling at him to make a different choice. One side was light, the other was dark. Life. Death. Forgiveness. Revenge. The tick of the watch seemed to taunt him, seemed to beckon to him in the voice of a cajoling demon.
Go on, the watch seemed to say, take your anger out on yourself, on the world, on whoever's closest. It sat on the table, the light on it's face looking like a mocking smile. He turned himself away from it and stood up, his knees knocking painfully against the table. The whiskey inside the glass spilled over the side of the glass, but he no longer cared. In one deft movement, he snatched the watch up from the table and glared at it. He knew that if he sat there any longer, listening to the watch, and the darkness in his own heart, he would give in. For he was a weak and imperfect man, like all of the men who lived in this world.
He rushed out of the darkened living room, the watch still in his hand. The man walked, almost ran, down a long hallway barely lit by the orange glow of an outside lamp post. He opened the door forcefully, and it smacked heavily onto the wall, ripping the wallpaper. He arched the hand holding the watch back over his head and launched it into the air. It flew, glittering and silver, through the air. It landed on the black tarmac of the street and the back flew off, revealing the intricate network of cogs inside. Soon a car would drive over it and the man knew that once the ticking of the clock ceased, so would the ticking of his own indecisive heart, switching between two extremes as if on a metronome.
The man closed the door and took a moment to breath slow and deep. The world still tipped slightly, due to his drunkenness, but he was smiling. His heart and mind were quiet, and he knew that for once, he had stood tall and strong in the face of adversity.