New York Subway

A pale, misshapen face drew nearer. I could sense a vague familiarity, but it was hard to grasp.
“No don’t come any closer! Please no! I can’t take no more! You’re not alive, you’re not alive!”
……fear overtook my body as I began to regain consciousness. I trembled unable to gain control over my body. I shook my head in an attempt to develop a sense of reality. It was no use. What was I doing here?

I peered through the window in a desperate attempt to discover something recognisable; but despite these attempts I couldn’t. The streets were overcome with people, none of them even aware they were being observed, just carrying on with their normal routines, stalking the streets leaving no space for the sidewalks to breathe.
I frantically scanned the small, enclosed room in order to find something to refresh my memory. I then came across a card reading ‘with deepest sympathy…..’
A puzzled expression was forced upon my face as I tried to make sense of it. Then I realised why I was here. A river flowed down my cheeks as I fell to the floor wishing I could go back to not knowing. It was so hard for me to accept it, I felt as if I was being suffocated with my own feelings, as if my heart had been taken from me for it was unable to feel no more.
Silence. Not even the clocks could bear to tick anymore. Everything so empty and cold, leaving no reason to go on. Why did she have to die? I felt so much resent towards her. How could she do this to me? So many thoughts and questions were running through my mind. What was I saying? How could I feel so much hate and rejection to my own mother?
I felt so sick and numb inside. Physically I felt dead but emotionally I felt so much pain and sorrow. It wasn’t just me I had to think about though was it? What about my family? What were they going to think if I didn’t go to my mother’s funeral?
The whole prospect made me shiver. I can imagine their remarks now. I had to go no matter how I felt, I had to say goodbye.
I felt as if I was in a world of confusion. The funeral was to be in New York due to my mother being brought up there. But how could I get there? How could I afford it?
I hadn’t even come to terms with my mother’s death and yet I was left with all these decisions. I opened my wallet to find emptiness; kind of the way I was feeling right now. I closed my eyes trying to gain a stable state of mind. Somehow I’d get there, no matter how difficult the situation is. What kind of a person would I be if I didn’t go?
I breathed in deeply, hoping the extra oxygen would give me an answer to my problems; it didn’t. Nothing would bring her back but at least I can take her with me as a part of her will always remain in me, I can see that now.
I stared at the ceiling, hoping it would give me an insight into my problems. I sighed deeply closing my eyes once again. Then I saw her face again drawing nearer, her eyes calling tome in a deep, longing desire.
I couldn’t stop shaking. The images just kept running through my mind like a film being played over and over again in slow motion.
My eyes fixed upon the clock. Time just seemed to flow by carelessly without anything being accomplished in it. It tended to make me feel sad that I’d wasted so much. I needed to get out of here before I wasted anymore time on pointless arguments with myself!
I left the hotel, frantically trying to gather any spare money that had been left around the room. There was hardly anything. I stepped out onto the sidewalk to be barged into, everyone rushing to get somewhere, not caring about anyone else.
I looked up at the sky to discover tall, large buildings towering over me in an ominous way. I felt so alone yet I was surrounded by hundreds of people. I carried on walking down the sidewalk admiring the homeless, not their lifestyles but their outlook on life. They don’t care about what anyone else thinks, only about the necessities. Although in their eyes I could see despair, this is not right, what was the world coming to?
These menacing thoughts could not be rid of. They just kept tormenting my mind. Then I saw the answer, it was written in large bold letters entitled ‘Broadway subway.’
There had been many stories about taking the subway but I didn’t suppose any of them was true, besides it’s cheap and it’s the only way.
I stepped down into a dark, dingy hole of darkness below on the earth’s surface. A distinguished stench roamed the air making me feel nauseous. I went down the stairwell cautiously taking in the hell-like atmosphere.
As I reached the bottom I gasped in horror at the threatening surroundings. Graffiti pierced the subway walls increasing its texture as it builds up in layers. I wanted to turn back but I knew I couldn’t. Red paint stained the walls; it was almost like; oh wait it was. My face went pale as I saw the human blood splattered up the cold, hard wall, no one even bothering to remove it. I ran as fast as I could trying to escape the fears of the imagination.
All around me I saw images flashing through my mind. Fear gripped my heart. Tears blocked my vision as I tried to find the token booth. I couldn’t back out now; I had already come too far. I hesitated as I saw the token booth; I then approached it pulling out a dollar, the only thing I had left. I purchased the token and then waited patiently wishing it wouldn’t come for then I could have an excuse. Who was I kidding? The only person I was trying to fool was myself.
The train’s eyes beamed out of the darkness, it was like they were trying to hypnotise their victims before they’d even begun their ghastly journey. I took the first car making sure that there were other people on it, so that I could remind myself that I wasn’t the only person experiencing this catastrophe.
I stared at the floor trying to avoid eye contact with any of the other passengers incase they see fear in my eyes or that I may see fear in theirs, either way I was doomed. The lights flickered on and off struggling to keep a constant setting. I often feared that they would totally go off. I didn’t dare to see how anyone else was feeling. The whole car was filled with an annoying silence and irritable atmosphere. It was hard to keep sanity.
No one dared speak in case of rejection or unwanted conversation. Smoke drifted through the air causing me to cough, I was unable to hold it in. I stared out of the window to see darkness and the occasional flicker of light. This was all too much.
Then suddenly the train came to a screeching halt and then …darkness. Total darkness. My heart began to pound unexpectedly; I couldn’t bear to sit like this. I felt so restrained by the silence. I felt so alone.
“Hello? Is anyone there? Somebody please answer me?” I screamed unable to be silenced any longer. Then I heard a murmur in the background.
“Its ok this usually happens, it only lasts a few minutes. You’ll be ok.”
The lights slower began to flicker, swaying form side to side before regaining total lighting. I turned around to see people smiling in relief.
“Thanks” I said quietly realising that this wasn’t as horrific as I thought. The fear of the subway was just in my head. Just a constant reminder of how brutal life can be.
I sat back and sighed in relief before realising that I didn’t know what platform to get off at. Panic. I couldn’t bear to go through all this again. I decided to get off at the next platform and then get directions from there. I quickly rose and stepped off the train to find myself surrounded by emptiness. My hopes had been demolished once again. Everything came flooding back and I finally broke down. I could no longer hold in all these feelings. Tears burst from my eyes and I didn’t have the strength to wipe them away.
It was then a hand touched my shoulder. A shiver went down my spine as I turned around in fear. A man was stood behind me, he smiled calmly.
“What’s wrong?” He said
I didn’t want got get into everything so I just told him that I was lost and I needed to get out of the subway. He showed me to the stairwell and gave me directions.
A sense of relief passed through me. Was it finally it? Was I really here? The only thing that was left to frighten me was the thought of going back. But I realised now that there was nothing to fear except being left alone with my thoughts, but maybe if I confronted them then there would be nothing left to fear; except perhaps, fear itself!

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