I left Masterson’s chambers with his angry voice accompanying Jim in quick step behind me.
The door closed. Jim and I had managed to escape, leaving Masterson’s voice banging it’s head into the solid confines of the office. I stopped before a tall grid of glass panes, icy flakes crusted in their exterior corners, a frigid resonance touching my face. Michael, you’re making things very difficult for me. He was standing behind me, nearly whispering. You remember Pop reading Mark Twain to us, Jim? I don’t read Twain anymore. I knew why he didn’t read Twain anymore. Twain said, I told him, ‘Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.’ In other words, take account of the facts, consider the possibility you’re being fooled. People can be swallowed by the mob. He stepped next to me and we watched the snow sifting from some silent place above the shimmering streets, each flake growing heavier as it fell, deforming into a beautifully crafted thing feathering with gravity to its demise in the steam and muck of the gutters. You’re not losing anything by voting yes on this one, Michael. From my point of view, I lose everything. I spent a lot of time and money and bent a lot of rules to bring you here, Michael. Then you shouldn’t have. But I have, brother, so how does that help us now? He was frightened. The red light at the peak of the monument far out in the darkness blinked slowly. I thought of the yin-shaped storm of birds I’d seen here in the spring. All that sunlight behind them. The air so heavy and moist. All I can tell you, Jim, is I’ll stand with you if you’ll stand with me, either way, I will be standing, right here. I turned to him and there, deep in his dark eyes I found that same yin-shaped mess and I wanted grab his tie and throw him through that window. You have no idea what you’ve done to us, Michael. Maybe but I’m a quick study.
Chrysalis, a growing collection of very short fiction.
That Night Filled Mountain
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Unless noted, all pics credited to Skitz O'Fuel.