In abandoned buildings, holes form allowing eerie whistling winds no man should hear. Same goes for souls.
Boredom is a unique and special jailor. It promises no release and brooks no pleas. Time warps to a crawl and afterwards, when asked how long the sentence, the answer's always "an eternity". What makes the boredom cell so scary is the feeling an invisible hand is slowly squeezing the spirit out of you like a leaky tire.
Then you can end up flat.
Darian was flat. He didn't draw much anymore, just doodled. His pool of pity didn't allow much inspiration. "What's the point of drawing when you can't have friends?" As in times before the shelter, his self-talk resumed with a vengeance. He ran away from the shelter - from himself - continuing his lifelong running and it had only been a matter of time before he ran out of places to go.
Wounded and desperate, his darting eyes had spotted this empty haven safely outside the prying eyes of shelter dwellers. He hated it but his pride demanded its love. Like any abandoned place, Darian rummaged through looking for scraps of life. And as always, none were found. No matter. It was anonymity he truly sought - and that he got. And hated.
Ruler of hell, stood he. Like a character out of a Shakespearian tragedy, Darian mockingly hailed his domain of debris, his realm of rot, his kingdom of cockroaches. In simulated adulation, he held out his arms over the vast nothingness he surveyed. His piercing eyes went beyond the walls to all spots in the world both open and hidden - and found nothing there either.
Darian had cracked under the weight of his torment. So adamant were his attackers his pain was not real he retreated to a fulltime job of death for the first time in years. It had been a minor miracle of timing he even got it and for once Darian assumed the gods must be smiling on him for doing as they wished. He wasn't human anymore, he was leftovers. Shuffle along, be happy you're a janitor and "productive". But this lie could not stay buried regardless what worldly gods decree.
In the shelter, Darian's inner dream came true, meeting Cassie, a social worker whose ethereal spirit alone heals the soul. But needing her wasn't part of the bargain and when time came for her to move on, his bitter jealousy ate him alive. Now, in karmic revenge, another woman faced Darian: Vickie, the anti-Cassie, a "corporate creature" bent on destroying him. She immediately sniffed out his independent spirit and using her position as supervisor did her best to make his job a living hell.
He couldn't understand: why the miracle of getting this job only to be faced with this witch??
Awash in guilt, Darian could not stand up to her, failing himself yet again. Embracing his martyrdom, he refused all comforts. He cursed himself as he wrongly assumed Cassie would want. Any indulgence must be wrong if it helped this worthless being to live. One thing he didn't do was pick up the bottle again, which surprised even himself. None of it, however, cleared his guilty conscience
He drifted into temps jobs and that's where he found himself at that moment, in a windowless white room painstakingly placing tiny electrodes into tiny holes in circuit boards to be soldered later. At break times, he'd stood apart from the others outside, staring into nearby trees he imagined leapt from a Monet painting, seeing a hidden poetry there; wondering what planet he was on. Every fiber, every cell in his body wished to rush into those trees, to explore their secret, to throw himself upon the mercy of Life.
Twenty feet to paradise and yet unreachable in a lifetime.
Back inside the salt mine, Darian listened in crushed despair as co-workers spoke of the advantages of the solderers, how they got more hours and more pay. People to be valued. Darian was never one of the valued people. He was the bad guy wanting to burn everything down so he could live. Love never seemed so far away.
"Dear God, what have I done to my life?"
Suddenly, the door burst open, each head in the room instinctively turning with the energy rushing in. Darian almost died. Cassie! She found him! Ushering him out the door, she fed his soul once more, explaining this was no place for him, that he deserved to nurture his soul and come back into the fold of dreamers. "Yes!" he grinned, "Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!" Just like before, Cassie triggered a string of Yes’s within him, always saying the right thing, knowing the right answer, giving the right amount of love. Saved at last.
Despite the spiteful words in his head, Darian had indulged himself in his empty hell-hole by buying himself car magazines, a passion of his youth. Nothing could be further out of his reach than a car but as a child he drew amazing, fantastical cars several stories high capable of doing anything his dreams desired. But when Darian awoke from his Cassie dream, the sight of the magazines inflamed him. She's gone, you idiot! Get that through your head! He flung the periodicals across the room, landing between rusting cans of hazardous waste.
Flames. Roasting flames encircled Darian, no here gets out alive! His soul ablaze, he fled into the night, swallowed by the darkness. How much longer could he run? Where did he have to go?
Downtown Dallas was on fire last night -- at least, its trash cans were. Six or seven of them, to be more exact. That's what firefighters say. We saw four for sure -- the first one around 9. The trash can at the corner of Griffin Street and Ross Avenue was smoking. I was driving home from work and doubled back to make sure I'd seen what I'd seen. Sure enough -- thick, opaque clouds of smoke pouring out of the can.
Then, there was a flash of light just down the street toward Lamar Street -- sure enough, another waste can was ablaze in front of the CVS. For a few minutes, it just burned. Then the fire engines sounded and rounded the corner; and within minute, it was out.
Some waiting at the West End DART station gathered across the street for a better view. "I'll tell you what," said one man, Don Willis, who had missed his bus to watch the action, "whoever is doing it, before the night's over, they'll do it again." He was right.