Wings — A short story

“I’m leaving you,” she said with a flat tone and a blank stare. She looks almost unnatural, pale, not as lively and glowing as he knows her. The light of the morning sun pours in timidly, signaling the onset of a bland day.
There is silence before she continues, mechanically: “I’ve met someone who is like a god. He is built like an otherworldly statue, has the voice of the calm before the storm and makes new amazing worlds with his hands and his words.” He remembers these words clearly, for she had spoken them in the past, in other contexts. To him.

He gazes ahead, up from the morning newspaper and into the distant walls, that now seem more vague and colorless than ever. She stands beside him, unmoving and silent. For a moment, he zig-zags with a glance over the newspaper: there is distant news of wars and bouts of peace, disorder and clarity; disillusioned or mindful people, silent or loud lovers, screaming in their bloodied hearts or tearing through its walls; houses, old and modern, colored and drab, tall or single-storied, empty or inhabited by cheerful hosts.

As he finishes glancing over the paper, he realizes he is blind. The moment seems to go on forever, where even if everything made sense, it would not matter. The world has retreated unto itself in blurry, chaotic clumps and cannot, will not be untangled. Everything is distant and strange.

He stands, closes the paper, takes a last sip of the cold coffee and walks toward the door. She fixates him with mechanical movements, tilting her head and turning to follow his steps. The drab color of the late-morning is none the merrier.

He opens the door and watches the cozy neighborhood. There’s barely any noise, only the distant barking of a dog and the intermittent thuds of doors and windows being closed piercing the silence briefly. He stops on the porch, glances up to the distant clouds, then twitches. A spot of blood has appeared on his back and is growing. Other spots of different sizes follow until his shirt is soaked in blood, gushing.

The blood is followed by wounds, opening side by side, spurting more blood. He groans and screams for a moment when the fleshy stubs begin sprouting, decorated in dirty white. They reach outward and grow relentless, piercing his skin and expanding with elongated feathers. After the wings have grown the blood is drenching the skin and the feathers, but they stand majestic and imposing.

The wings start to beat stronger and stronger as he bends one knee and sweeps upwards, the wings carrying him straight along the sunrays and through the clouds. She steps and stops on the porch, watching emptily at the sight of his wings, guiding him away, to the sky.

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