#11: The Crow Goes Caw
The artificial glow of the streetlight makes everything appear unreal, dream-like and warmer than it is.
There’s a distant roar of traffic that reminds him of the ocean. It’s transporting. His mind flashes to another time and another place in the world. It’s all so much safer as a memory.
This town is completely deserted except for the neighborhood ghosts and a few stray cats. What time is it?
He doesn’t care anymore. Tomorrow never comes anyway. He continues to walk, for a moment the sound of a far away freight train is audible, but as it fades he can’t know for certain if he really heard anything or if it was just in his head. The feeling is a familiar one, he always heard his dreams before they manifested visually, when it passes it all sinks into the same foggy bank of memory, a place where the boundaries between reality and imagination dissolve.
Whether it’s real or not, he takes his direction like he should. He walks to the edge of the train tracks and waits, watching the world quiver under the moonlight.
Staring into space, wondering how anyone could be so self involved as to ignore the sky. His gaze drifts back to ant level and he notices what looks like a big black house cat, perched at the end of the platform. An immortal sphinx, watching over her corner of the universe.
He’s drawn to her. Hopelessly. As he gets closer and his eyes come into focus, he realises that it wasn’t a cat at all but a woman. Her dress billowed romantically like Bela Lugosi’s cloak, her eyes were covered by a long black veil and only her mouth was exposed. A cat? Really? His mind plays tricks in this darkness.
Without turning to look at him she spoke..
'Is everything ok?
You seem surprised’.
Slightly embarrassed, and coy he replied..
'It's just.. Well when I first saw you..
I thought you were a cat’.
'What makes you think that I wasn't?'
Confused he looked around and nervously asked..
'What are you doing here so late?'
She turned and lifted her veil to reveal a pair of dark yellow eyes..
'I am always here
and it’s not late,
you might try asking yourself the same question though,
I know exactly where I am’.
He turned away, dejected and started toward the exit. Just as he was approaching the base of the stairs he turned around to steal one last glance at that mysterious woman from the opposite end of the platform.
Shockingly she was staring right back at him, with those yellow eyes still clearly visible from so far away.. He was paralyzed by them, and what he saw next made no logical sense..
A speeding train came into view. The woman looked forward and stepped closer to the edge of the platform. Her lips moved and she spoke some words that he couldn’t make out.
She was going to jump. He knew it and he had to save her.
His adrenaline carried him faster than his legs ever could.
and he jumped right after her
directly into the path of the oncoming engine..
There was no time,
just the deafening roar,
the white light,
the screaming of breaks..
It was much too late to do anything more but accept it.
His fragile body collided with the full titantic force of that gigantic steel monster and he exploded into a murder of crows soaring high on the updraft, flapping their wings and vanishing into the night sky where two yellow stars shimmered, brighter than all the rest.
He shook his head, exhaled, and ascended the staircase.
Rebel Without A Crew - Robert Rodriguez