The Plan (Short Horror Story)

Last night, I was awake. The truth is that I don’t sleep too well lately.

I have talked to the doctor, but he does not want to prescribe any kind of medication. He says sport is very good for my problem, as well as reading before going to bed. According to the opinions of the professionals, my problem is psychological, as if I were a hypochondriac continuously obsessed with being awake. Some of them asked me if I was afraid of falling asleep. Of course not. I have always thought that the best way to die would be being asleep. Without having any kind of consciousness about what would be going on, simply leaving the body behind in the same way as we came into the world: unconsciously, and unable to do anything to remedy it.

I’ve been up for five days and fourteen hours. Many say that such a thing is impossible, that if it were a reality, I would be closer to death than a fly.

But they are not right. I feel more alive than ever.

I want to sleep, but at the same time I do not know what could happen if I fall into a deep sleep after so long. Maybe I could fall into a coma. I might not wake up, or I could sleep for days at a time, like the sick people in the hospitals. And I’m not sick. I am very alive, and I have regained my good health. As an ironic and graceful paradox, but not funny enough to relate it.

Maybe sleeping is not a good idea.

I do the same thing every night: I prepare a bowl of warm milk and put oats to boil. When I was little, my mother would prepare me a hot drink so that I could fall into the deepest sleep and that way I could start to drink from her side. I do an exercise routine, read “The Catcher in the Rye” or any book written by Virginia Woolf and I watch a documentary on television. Today, I am told a story about a spice of anteater that will disappear soon because of a deviation in their nourishment.

I still remember the day I found her at home, dead. The vision accompanies me to these days, but I do not want to forget it, because, although it sounds a bit morbid and dirty, it is the only memory I have of it. I have photos and video cameras full of remembrances that could help me build another image of her, but it is practically impossible. I can’t erase the image from his face.

She had slipped on the wet floor, for she had passed the mop before the network of events began. The whiskey bottle broke and she, as she moved, nailed the crystals to different parts of her body, which I then watched as the doctor extracted them from my mommy’s body. I heard him say that he did not understand how she could have nailed them so much, unless she were so numbed by the effects of alcohol that hadn’t even noticed the sharp filaments of glass penetrating her flesh and cutting her skin. But that was not what caused her death, but the vomit. After moving and standing with his head still for several minutes, the vomit rushed into his throat, as it happens with drug addicts. The doctor said that it took several minutes to die, because it was not a huge amount to drown in a matter of seconds.

Her face was snowy when I found it, but in the hollows of his eyes, as well as at the corner of his lips, the brown color was invading everything, like a cheap painting flooding a white canvas. Her eyes were still open, so she must have died knowing at all times what was happening, too drunk to do anything to avoid it.