Here’s my piece for this week’s Picture it and Write!
This isn’t right, he thought for the hundredth time. Mathew stood well within the reach of the shadows in the corner of the room. The old women, oh these women, their wills were thousandfold the force of their heavy wrinkled and gnarled hands. They had gotten it in their heads that Petr must live. Why, he’s far too young for this fate.
Fools. Who are they to decide against nature? Petr, the rambunctious lad he loved and knew, the boy who wanted to fly. Pretended to do so as he ran down the hills at breakneck speed just to feel the wind. If he’d been allowed to die in proper peace would have turned in his grave at the very though of such imposed suffering his soul must endure. It pained Mathew to see his friend binded to this lingering existence.
The soft light of dawn stroked Petr’s pale immobile face, a picture of perfect, undisturbed rest. The transparent gossamer veil seemed to caress his fine features from head to toe in a hesitant touch. As it should, because it is not right. Death comes for us all, young or old. No one wants to hurt this way in going.
He grit his teeth in a moment of madness. Should he? Of course he should. Mathew had to admit that that’s why he sneaked in the house in the first place. Damn them all.
Striding to the bed, he knelt with a hand soft on Petr’s cheek. He held his breath as he griped the wisp of cloth and let it fall from Petr’s face slowly to the ground. His eyes flickered open. Mathew let out the breath in surprise but then if he had to say anything, anything at all, “Fly, my friend. They hold your wings no longer.”
Petr smiled at him, a wan thing, and nodded. Mathew felt cool fingers on his hand, a weak squeeze. He smiled still as he closed his eyes for the last time. Mathew will always swear he felt the soul soaring up and out of the open window. He rose to stand right there, he just knew it.
From somewhere in the old house a shrill scream clawed its way through the walls. They should have known, the must have. It was not right.