Monday 7 May 2018

The Body Falls Short: A Short Story

His name was Potter. He would spend hours in the library absorbing past scientific discoveries without the intention of becoming a scientist nor putting this knowledge to use in making new creative discoveries by which the world could be pulled forward in acquiescence. He also loved reading all kinds of history books, constructing an elaborate 4D picture in his mind which he would modify and make more clear as he plugged in new information. The mental picture was like various tunnels moving through time and merging symbiotically where cultures would be partially swallowed up by other dominating cultures. He found great pleasure in his hobby, resting in the awareness of his abundance of knowledge gave him a sense of power and comfort which no one could take from him. It was stored up transparently inside his skull where he could call up any bit at will and sing it out through his throat, tongue, teeth and mouth. He even practiced this execution poetically where he could, depending on what the situation called for, deliver his choice of words in an order and set so beautifully arranged that the listener's face would often glow with attention and admiration. This tendency contributed even more to his sense of power and ultimately pride.

Potter was retired at the age of 42. He built up his estate starting from an early age. He now sat comfortably in his self-constructed throne of the finest upholstered silk and straw. His feet perched languidly upon a matching foot stool. His servant boy would fan him tirelessly throughout the hottest hours of the day as he, the king, would get fatter and fatter as his historical reconstruction grew too expansive for all the folds in his brain to carry and surrepticiously moved down his spine and into his belly. By now, the story in his head had a life of its own, Potter was no longer in control of the winding organism it had become. The story would seem to breathe on its own and take which ever turn it desired.

A few years passed. Potter was now more jolly and lively than ever. He would join discussions, circles, meet-ups and take any possible opportunity for him to share his story. He would even be praised by his debating counterparts for his prowess in rhetoric. Aside from these meetings however he did notice he was quite alone. He spent most of his day at home, at the library, or roaming around town by himself. He would cover this loneliness with food and drink,... and books.

He was out for a walk one sunny afternoon when a ceramic vase came hurling down on him from a window above. It struck him in the left ear and he fell to the ground with a thud. The vase exploded into a fine powdery dust as it made contact with the earth, and blew away with the warm breeze. Potter was out cold. His experience was other worldly. It was black and cold. He was travelling close to the speed of light. He began approaching the light from stars which would wiz by in the blink of an eye, one could call them flashes or streaks. Out on the sidewalk people were staring at his contorted body. Some could not figure out what it was. Its shape was knotted up like a pretzel but slimely like a slug. It was emitting a peculiar odour as well and most people did not stay long to peer at the seemingly extraterrestrial matter. A few people called for emergency services due to confusion and helplessness. Just upon arrival of the first paramedic, the dark-greenish-grey, slimely organic mass which once was Potter's body started to rumble and shake. The paramedic halted his approach in surprise and wonder. With a gradual climb, there became audible a long uninterrupted soprano note being sung with a deep raspy underlying quality. The growing whistling of the airy soprano F-sharp interwoven with the low guttural sound texture froze the onlookers in a state of mesmerization. Their feet started to lift off the concrete and their groundless trance-like expressions began changing into blissful smiles of ecstasy as their weightless bodies were strung lifelessly in space. An outpouring of alphabetical characters started spitting out of the strange organic clump. Pulses of letters, rainbow coloured and of sizes ranging from 12pt text to microscopic dust like particles sprayed from what once was Potter. The fountain continued in waves of frequencies and particles, endlessly pouring out into the atmosphere. In Potter's experience, the darkness was changing to light and his flying speed gradually slowed as he came to a standstill. Glowing light was now emanating from his body as he climbed out of the now lifeless coccoon drying up on the sidewalk and stood up to greet the onlookers who were now back on the ground with new expressions of perplexity. Potter took a look at his fresh hands and feet, thanked the crowd and the emergency services and walked on. He did not look back once. In fact, he completely forgot about the whole event and his former life within minutes. He turned into the bakery and ordered a plain, whole-grain bun and a bottle of water.

Thank you for reading : )
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