TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
Ghost and Steve had walked quite a ways down the beach. They were in no hurry, just talking, and letting the waves lap at their feet.
"Remember the time we drove the car into the ocean?" Ghost asked.
Steve frowned. "Um, no...why would we do that? It would ruin my car."
Ghost stopped walking to gaze out at the ocean, now turning dark. "We did it in a dream, and it turned out to be the sky instead. The glowing fish were the stars, and everything was upside down." He nodded, as if this were a fact.
"Oh, one of your cool stories?" Steve asked, not really remembering.
Looking at Steve, now, Ghost's heart ached. "You never believe me, Steve," he said. I tell you my dreams every time." He paused a few seconds, then shrugged. "It's ok. You don't have to care."
Steve didn't know what Ghost was getting at, what he was trying to say. "I like hearing your dreams, but that's all they are...fun stories," he said, knowing that sounded lame.
"Whatever..." Ghost said, and continued walking in the sand.
Steve hadn't moved, and just watched, as Ghost kept walking farther away from him. Something was really bothering him, and he knew for sure, when he saw Ghost's shoulders shaking, and saw him reach up to swipe at his face.
He ran to catch up with Ghost. Clutching Ghost's wrist, he jerked him around to face him. Ghost didn't resist, nor did he look up at him. He just stood there, swaying slightly, letting the tears fall to the sand below. Steve's heart lurched, to see Ghost in such distress, so pulled him into an embrace.
"Come here, Babe, what is it? Why are you so sad?" He kissed the top of Ghost's head, smelling the fresh sea breezes infused strands of hair. He could feel Ghost's heart beating so fast, feel him breaking down, losing strength. Easing them both down, sitting side by side in the cooling sand, Steve tried again.
"Tell me what's the matter...please. Did I say something to upset you, make you mad? I'm sorry if I did."
Ghost shook his head, and sighed. "No, I'm just tired...so tired, Steve."
"I know, and we're going home, as soon as we get back to..."
"No, that's not it," Ghost said. "My insides are tired."
"Your insides? Are you sick, do you hurt somewhere?" Steve asked, as he felt Ghost's forehead, to see if he had a fever.
Shaking his head, Ghost said, "No...myself, my whole being. I don't know what it's about, but I feel it."
Steve's mind was racing, trying to come up with a word, or anything to unlock what Ghost was talking about. Then, latching onto a word that flitted through his mind, he asked, "Your...soul?"
Ghost looked into Steve's eyes. "That's it," he whispered.
"What...what do you mean?" Steve asked.
Ghost lay his head on Steve's shoulder, and took his hand in his. "My...soul...is tired. It's ready to go...back. I've felt it being called back for awhile now, but I don't...didn't want to listen to it. Now I can't stop it, anymore. Steve, I'm scared...so scared." He began sobbing again.
Steve's heart was skipping beats; he thought he might pass out. No...no...I can't...not now... But, his eyes and ears started acting weird, and a buzzing was coming from somewhere far away. He blinked a few times, trying to clear his vision of sparkly dots.
Ghost squeezed Steve's hand, hard, bringing him back from a near faint. "Steve? Can you hear me?" he asked, right up in Steve's ear. "Steve?"
Steve nodded, but slowly, as it was making him dizzy. His nightmare was almost coming true. His fear of Ghost willing himself into another state of being, of actually becoming a ghost, had plagued him all these years he'd known Ghost.
"Don't say that," Steve managed to say. "Don't ever say that."
"But, it won't stop. I can't make it stop. It's the way it's supposed to be, the way it's been every time, before, the way it will always be. It will happen again and again." Ghost said. He pushed back Steve's hair from his forehead, feeling how cold, and clammy he felt, yet he was drenched in sweat.
"We'll find each other again...you know we will, but this time is over. I have no control over it, anymore...and I'm so tired of trying to make it not happen." Ghost hitched a sobbing breath.
Steve took hold of Ghost's shoulders ... God, he's so thin... gripping hard. "Don't let yourself give in, Ghost. You are strong. Fight for your life, fight with all you have. Don't just give in to it, the feelings you're having. You're just sinking into depression, that's all. You've been there before, where everything seems hopeless, and you know it doesn't last long. You know this. There is help...your therapist, medicines...do all you can for yourself, and let me help you. Please, please don't give up on life, on yourself...on us...Don't leave me alone...Don't leave me alone...DON'T LEAVE ME ALONE... I'm begging you, please, please, God, do something. You can't have him, yet No way...NO WAY... Steve was shouting in his head.
Ghost heard it all. All of Steve's thoughts, and he knew Steve was frantic, could snap at any second. He wanted to calm him down, but how? Now that he'd started the whole thing...how? A quick thought formed in his head...Wow, I'm feeling energized, again. This rant of Steve's is making me feel alive, again. Why? Why, when Steve's angry with me, does it get me going, get me turned on?... He grinned, in spite of himself. He didn't even realize that he was doing that, but Steve saw it...and he snapped.
"What the hell, Ghost? You think it's funny, now? Is this some sort of test of my loyalty to you...of my love for you?" He stood up, looking down at Ghost, now. "That's the shittiest thing you've ever done, and you've done plenty. I can start naming them...is that what you want? Huh?"
Next part coming soon!
Peace, Love, & Writing