He could feel it through his hands. His life fading away before he could even blink or before he could reach out and tell him that everything would be okay, because he was his brother, his tried and true friend that would last throughout the ages, throughout the many millennia’s and throughout each star’s explosion and even throughout each black hole eating the universe with its long, shadowy gullet that spanned and vacuumed across space and time.
His heart stopped beating. He was no longer breathing. And the only one who witnessed his death was him, and only him, as these doctors didn’t felt like they should care for a young man without health insurance, someone who didn’t had the money to help their lungs be taken away and replaced with lungs that promised a better life, one without sickness and being taken back by the nails of Fate and his weak nose and his weak bones and his weak chest.
His nose was webbed with mucous. His eyes were smeared with the crust of his tears that seemed to dry out so quickly. His last breath, his last palpitations, Sonic felt them, and he wished he could give his life to the one who meant so much to him, through the very wires of his fingers, through the very wires of his heart. His brother, his sickly, his short and fragile angel, Wind, died on February 12th, 2012, and he couldn’t believe it, after all the doctors who said to him that they could give him new lungs, he would be good as new, he would be a different brother, he would be as big as Sonic, he would be able to run and breathe and smell the salty air the sea breathed out and the flowers speaking with their pollen all around them in the glowing colorful lights and the rain-kissed land of Seattle, the home he wanted his brother to enjoy as much as him. But the doctors wanted money. They always wanted money, otherwise they wouldn’t be using their rubbery blue hands to save anyone in the hospital, to carve out their bodies and find the right wires and the right machines that would make them live again. His brother needed a breathing machine, an iron lung, and his parents couldn’t afford it. As much as they loved Wind, their dear son, they couldn’t save him. And now, Wind was dead. And Sonic was the only one who was here who heard his final beats, his final blinks, his final sniffs and his final dreams.
He wanted to be a writer, he told Sonic. He had so many good stories to tell to the world. And Sonic wanted to hear more of them, but God took him away. He took him away because he needed a storyteller in Heaven. And Sonic thought he wasn’t going to get a much better storyteller than his brother. He told stories full of life and gold and humor and wisdom, and now the only story he could ever hold onto was The Raven Who Couldn’t Stay Away. And no matter how hard he could love his brother and understand him, he couldn’t understand the story and its cryptic meanings inside the black plastic covers. That was how good of a storyteller Wind was. No one could understand what he truly meant.
The binder that kept his story tucked away was by his heart, his cold blue heart that stopped breathing. Sonic stood up, tucked away a slit of a tear, and held the story to his gold heart, and he wished he could let the people know of how much the world meant to him. And how much the doctors failed to save a man, a successful man in his life and energy, who could’ve done something to other people’s lives. No matter how much he wanted to live, how much his roots held onto the dirt that made him sustain so much life for only a little while (the antibiotics), he was gone. He was swept away by God’s hand.
A nurse came in, her heels clack, clack, clacking in Sonic’s eardrum. The bitch couldn’t save him. The bitch with her gold jewelry and her heels that cost forty dollars and her nicotine lips as she smoked the finest cigars, she couldn’t save him, money was the only important thing in this world, as she needed another breast augmentation before she could go on with her life. So much for the lives of others. So much for the red cross she proudly displayed on her head.
“He’s dead,” Sonic said, with no emotion in his voice. Not a tinge of heart. But the tears were escaping. They wanted to embrace his eyes.
“I’m sorry,” she said, with her voice full of acid. It sounded like acid to Sonic’s ears. Nothing could’ve saved him; nothing would’ve made it better. No matter how much her red lips kept opening and shutting and breathing as much air as his brother could ever breathe in his life, his fists shook and the tears kept flowing and his body shook and his heart shuddered and he wanted to show what he thought of the American health system, the white old men who thought no one needed health care because their decaying bodies were so taken care of that they decided to show how black they still were by denying the life and vitality of people’s organs who were still red and blue.
The doctor came in, and before he left the room, he swung his fist and struck him in the face, his eye swollen and blue. Then he ran as fast as he could, until the hospital couldn’t catch him.
The bastard pigs wouldn’t save his brother. No insurance meant no salvation.
He was never going to trust a single doctor again.
The sky was gray and downtrodden, lumpy and fringed with ice. The wind kept howling, much like his brother of the same name wanted to, and the sea charged against the pier, the long wooden poles separating the gray icy sea, slicing it up and it formed back together like lumps of clay.
He tried to distract himself, after his body hurt so much from running and fighting and crying. What if the sea was like clay? He imagined as so many monsters and so many myths and so many hearts and hands and legs would be formed by the sea, God telling of the world of what he could create, and now he had more creativity, more enthusiasm for his work, because his brother was with him. His brother, the bipolar mad sickly short pens as hands friend he knew for only 16 years. 16 years and God said he wanted him.
No matter what, he couldn’t stop thinking about him.
He cradled his book in his hands. It had no cover, no face. It was never published, and was in fact never finished. His brother often had crushing lows where he couldn’t focus on his tales. His mania, however, fueled him, and he could write so many pages in such a short time. And all he would do was write, gulp a vast amount of coffee as large as the sea, and he would bubble out words and characters and their tongues to say of beautiful things and the world he would create would be like God’s. His brother was god of his universe, and he had a fiery mind and a fiery tongue that could give birth to so many beautiful things. And he wondered himself if God was mentally ill, and brilliant.
The weather was beginning to get crueler, bitter. The wind grew sharper, feeling like knives to Sonic’s cheeks, the sea began to moan and crash against the pillars, wanting it to feed it as if it was its mother. He could feel the wind turning to snow in what seemed to be such a short amount of time.
He let go of the sides of the pier, his hands unhooked, but his thoughts were still hooked to his brother. Death was a dealer that wanted everyone to think about the carcass that lied strewed on the white bed, covered in white sheets. He could still remember how his brother’s heart stopped beating. He could still remember how nice it felt when his fist crashed against the pig’s snout, like the sea against the pier. His fist was much like the tidal waves here, as his brother’s were made of flames. He could feel the ocean crying and throwing a tantrum underneath his feet, underneath the bridge and the pier, and he knew he wasn’t the only one crying. He wasn’t the only one hurting.
Seagulls turned in the tides of the clouds. He could see a few fighting over a discarded corn dog, children and parents leaving the beach in droves as the seagulls regained their territory. They laughed in their crackly cries and their wings became part of the sky and they ate their spoils, the leftover chips and candy and hotdogs and fries. They were rulers of the sky and sea, scavengers of the golden loot that slept in the beach’s sand, and he imagined them as conquerors against the humans, the only things alive when the storm was loose and their stomachs hungered for the food that the humans never cared to eat and wished to waste. Their beaks could never be big enough for how big their stomachs were.
Ravens were much the same, he thought. Except they were quite intelligent birds, and he could even admit they had an air of mystery and beauty. His brother obsessed over them, and his favorite poem was “The Raven” by Edgar Allen Poe, as he was captured by the mystique of the birds. So much like the author of Jonathan Livingston Seagull, he wrote in a raven as the main character, one who seemed smarter and brighter than the humans who ruled the world, and he wondered on their imminent destruction, as the end of the world was coming, and the raven was the only one who knew, and the only one who knew how to survive. But humans never liked ravens. They considered them as bad luck. They weren’t as interested in their sleek black feathers and their nearly azure eyes much like his brother was. So the raven would caw and cry, as more humans began to die.
The seagulls looked at him, with their coal black eye, one of them swallowing a fry whole, and they flew away as he got closer. They wouldn’t deal with the hedgehog, who ruled the world alongside with the humans, even if they considered some of them as second class citizens.
He faced the gray, silver sea, and the gray, silver sea faced him.
It licked his shoes with its gray, silver tongue, and it spoke to him. It said come hither. Come hither and die like the god your brother was, oh your dear brother, art thou in heaven.
The sea ate his feet ravenously, and then it ate his knees, with its frozen teeth and its frozen blue tongue. It wanted to swallow him whole, as he traversed further into the sea’s gullet.
Die here, like your brother. Die here, and your family will never know.
The sea ate his body, and it was licking his head. It thought he was delicious and soon, Sonic plunged further into the freezing sea, the sea overjoyed to have a new meal.
He shivered. His heart shuddered again. He realized his body was as fragile as his godlike brother. The sea beat against him, crying, shouting, wailing, and he tasted the salty body, the salty tongue, and he gasped in the gray silver air and he was choking, much like his brother was before he died.
You can’t live without your brother, can you? You can’t deal with his death, can you? So you’d rather die than deal with it. Such a sad, tragic fate for someone who could be so useful to me. For someone who could be as godlike as your brother.
The plastic binder remained on the beachside. The seagulls pecked at it, thinking it was food, the birds not as smart as the creatures inside the book that his brother weaved. His brother who the sea was telling him was a god.
The sea told many truths but it also told many lies. It once said it would swallow the entire world, much like it was devouring Sonic, as he settled in the stomach of the beast, giving off his final breaths, his final palpitations. He shivered. His heart shuddered.
But it never could eat the world, as the land protected the humans, the creatures, the entire world from being licked off a plate. But the ocean owned 70% of the world. It was fair game to the gods of the sea and the gods of the land.
Why did he keep thinking of gods?
Why did he keep thinking that his brother was in the same league as things that didn’t exist?
It didn’t matter now, because in about five seconds, he was going to die.
Something glowed. Something with a fairy like body, with an orb of light around its neck. It swam towards him. He could see a golden light flicker in the silver sea, as it echoed throughout the ocean, as it echoed towards him.
He could feel the same clutches of death as his brother did. He could feel the same deal Death did with his brother, God. He could feel it crushing him, as he could feel whispers of voices ringing in his ear, as he gulped more of the sea’s stomach. The sea continued to eat, it continued to eat the leftover food the humans left, it even ate some of the seagulls, it was feeding on the world, it was gaining legs on its silvery scaly body and beginning to walk, the dragon it was, with the long slender neck and the blue gemmed eyes that stared at the earth’s soul, the tendrils of hair along its mouth, its silver teeth and silver tongue and silver insides sucking up all the sand.
Why was he doing this anyways?
It wasn’t like him to do this.
But his heart felt empty. And so did the sea’s. It called to him so many times, so long ago, when his brother was little and half the size of him. It said it had a secret, and Sonic wanted to hear after so many years.
A raven was perched on the sides of the pier, its violet eyes looking and gazing on the horizon. It ruffled itself, the feathers that shined like an onyx as the light refracted off them, it groveling and gasping for air much like Sonic in the sea of clouds, and it cawed and broke apart the ocean.
And oxygen filled his lungs. The breath of life was given to him. But his mind couldn’t contain the fantasy this world now held anymore, as the sea snorted and choked on the sand it was eating, and as the glow of emerald light inside his stomach beckoned him to, as the one who held the light knew Sonic and it knew his brother, it puked out the lands, it puked out volcanic ash, it puked out both Sonic and the god and the raven cawed and ruffled its feathers and stared and watched with its eyes like azurite.
And Sonic’s vision was black, and it was for a while, as he laid across the beach with the seagulls all around him, some wet and trying to flap their wings to go back to the world of the sky, to go back to being hungry and back to their own country before they decided to invade the human’s land, but they were weighed down, as the sea blinked its mercury eyes, sighed as more sand dribbled from its fangs and lips, and it lied down across the ocean’s boundaries again, and it slept, hungry and without a meal.
The orb glowed, radiant and close to his heart, his heart that continued to beat, despite his near taste of death. The fairy thing smiled, its hands small and looking much like a newborn infant’s still pink with life, and it spoke to him, using its fingers, sewing together the broken wires in his heart.
I have a deal for you, my friend.
I can bring your brother back if you want me to.
We just need to negotiate a deal.
I can’t perform miracles just for free you know. You have to put something in to earn something, like giving the breath of life to someone who could’ve died so many years ago. But I think we can be good friends, you and I. We have something in common. We have the same needs, the same wants, and unlike you, I can grant them for you. You just need to do me a favor. And it’s a relatively tiny favor.
He couldn’t respond.
His mouth was thick with the gray sea’s saliva, his mind wouldn’t let him speak, threaded with black stitches.
And we have another thing in common. When we just faced death in the eye, we cannot speak. We need a moment to rest. I am as mortal as you, as frail as you. I am your friend, and I will grant you your ultimate wishes, if you just do something for me…
The black stitches remained on his soul, his mouth, his heart. He could hear the words plainly, but he could not speak, and he wasn’t sure if he wanted to speak. Because gods were sometimes tricksters, and he wasn’t sure if he could entirely trust them.
The danger is past over. The dragon is remaining in the seabed, sleeping. You must wake up now, and speak to me. I can bring everything you ever loved back to you. Not only your brother, but of your favorite shows long past, your favorite people who have died much like your brother, your favorite feelings, everything my friend! I am a god of happiness, a god of gift giving, and I will not trick you much like the raven god that is sitting on the pier right now, trying to get you out of the deal. It is just sitting there, watching, about ready to strike us, and I will have to tell you that the raven god is a cruel god, a god you should not trust. Since the Indian times they were tricksters, liars, and thieves…
He opened his eyes, first seeing the world since his strange suicide attempt that had gone awry, with the thing in the black oily feathers on the pier watching him still, but it was no longer a raven, but something with curled quills and a pale muzzle, much like him, a creature that was probably a hedgehog, but it only stared and watched, as this fairy continued to talk to him, seeing his mauve face and his body that was much like a chipmunk, with a tail of a rabbit and teeth that shone in the opalescent sun that shimmered and looked they would belong to a pit-bull.
He thought on the promise to bring his brother back, his brother that was once a god, but had died because of the humans, because his body was just as frail as his, and he thought on how the world needed another magician like him, creating magic in his books, creating magic in his heart as it thumped as he thought about him back in his hands again, but he knew he couldn’t go into the deal, eating it freely out of his hand. He needed to know what this god wanted, this god that looked so tiny, so small, compared to his brother, the smallest, most glass-like hedgehog he ever knew.
And finally, even if he was disorientated, disarrayed, he spoke, and he spoke clearly to the Fay monster, as he could remember his brother’s laughter, his joys and happiness still in his mind, and he thought he might’ve done anything to bring him back, no matter the cost the creature would tell him to do.
His brother. His light, his sun, his star. He wanted him back with him. So close to his heart, so close to his eyes that were swollen with tears, to his fists that were white and shook so much he thought they would fall from his arms, he wanted him back so he could be at peace. He wanted him back because he thought he couldn’t live without him in this boring, gray, icy life.
“What do you want me to do? I…really want Wind back. He was one of my…one of my greatest moments when he was born. Me having a little brother to look after, especially one that was as great as him. He did got more attention than me, but I can understand why, because he was so sick all the time, and he wrote all these stories that I could never tell even if I was the smartest hog alive…”
The binder was near him, as the seagulls began to investigate it, pecking at it to have a little taste of plastic, to see if it was edible. Sonic drove them away, as he picked it up, and cradled it near his heart again, his brother’s tears and warmth near his. Thump. Thump. Thump.
“Your brother is the god of stories, the god of tales, the god of webs of truths and webs of words that intertwine to make that very same story I see in your arms, that is so close to your heart, and you may have loved your brother, Anansi, very much. And we loved him too, except the raven god, who cannot stand stories and truths, and even if he is sitting on the pier, watching us as we speak of our deal, he wants to bring the revival of your brother to an end. He wants to bring your life to an end, Sonic. Because with this deal, I will make you into a god like your brother, your brother who wished for me to give him the gift of storytelling. So it’s a small world after all, isn’t it Sonic? That your brother knew all about the gods and their little games, while you’re about to be sculpted into one too. I say you can be a very special god, one that can revive people and bring people to life with the touch of your hands, and…
“And the price?” asked Sonic. He didn’t entirely trust the creature, who even with his innocent looks, may have been trying to sucker him into something he didn’t want, a lemon life that he never asked for when he would make the deal. He knew he had to be careful. All contracts had lemons. And they weren’t exactly the kind he would taste in his mouth. They were bitter and sour, but he couldn’t eat them.
“I know these deals. There’s always at least something in these deals that make it backfire. Unless you can assure me that this deal is without loopholes, without any schemes to make me lose everything in the end like I always see them on television…”
And the Fay laughed, with his guillotine teeth that could stretch across and devour his entire face, laughing with so much gusto that Sonic thought his insides might burst from all the laughter he kept inside from so many generations, generations of men and women messing up while he was in the clouds, looking for yet another suitable client for his business. His business was a very tricky one, one that required careful hands, ones not too big or too small, one that required also of a mind not too big or not too small, and a strength that was very large and not small at all. His eyes that were very the same color of goldenrod flowers that he saw so much around this Seattle city were imbued with great vitality as he looked up at him, his wings that looked the same as an insect’s flapping so fast and so quick, as he held his contract aloft, along with a white pen with the tip in the shape and color of rubies. Such a high-quality pen for signing my name on a contract that seems to be so minor to this creature…or maybe it isn’t. This whole thing seems suspicious, but if he really does promise to bring my brother, who used to been a god, back to life, then I might have no other choice. I feel like I can’t live without his heartbeat, without his stories, without his eccentricity and his black and white emotions…
Thump. Thump. Thump. He clicked the rubied tip to see a point fashioned out of the finest gold, and he looked at the small, glowing type, to see if there were any loopholes. But all he could decipher was that he would have great power, he would gain a nearly omniscient sight, and he would hear the voices of the hopeful and the sad and depressed inside his head as he fought all the evil things in the world, on the cost of the one wish, the wish that his brother, Wind, Anansi, whatever they wanted to call him, that he would be brought back to life.
“Basically Sonic, my friend,” said the fairy creature, “you will become a god on the very wish to revive your brother. You will join us in the fight against the demons and all the dark lords and creatures of the planet. You must become a good god, a strong god, and you shall fight alongside other gods with you, to make the planet pure and righteous, lest you will become a dead, never spoken of again in folklore, and you will be forgotten, forever. Even your brother, who you decided to fight for, won’t hear of you again if you fail the duties you will swear to uphold. Once you sign the contract, your brother will be alive, and he will continue spinning his web of stories for you and your family, much like the book you have in your arms, and you will become the Christian God, very much like me, granting miracles to people, listening to everyone’s prayers, making sure the world doesn’t fall into darkness, making sure everyone believes in you. Gods need people to believe in them, after all, Sonic. It’s how they function. And if you don’t sign the contract, you can go back to your miserable life, one without your brother, one without believing in all of these myths and going back to your pitiful suicide attempt because you can’t seem to live without your brother, and it’s either grant a miracle or don’t. So do you want your brother back, or not? I will only allow you ten minutes to come to your decision. I saw what you could do so long ago (as I have these omniscient powers myself my friend, and I both watched you and your brother with very careful, sympathetic and wondering eyes), Sonic my friend, and we need a god like you to protect us. Not like the raven god, not like the one who would rather watch us as we suffer, standing on the pier there, with its opalescent eyes.”
The raven god continued to watch, and stare. It stared at everything, it stared at both the fairy creature and Sonic, it stared at the sunset as it left its blood-scarred body from the silver skies, it stared at the seagulls, who were beginning to fly off into the distance, as the night called, and seagulls did not roam at night, so said the gods who Sonic thought about being. So said the raven god, and the Christian God that Sonic might become, before he would even have a voice to control all his creatures. His creatures without much of freewill.
“So what will it be, Sonic?”
Ten minutes seemed to pass without so much as a blink or a notice.
His brother. His life, his breath that he could feel on his muzzle before he died, was beckoning to him, and he could finish his story, the one about the raven who lived in this apocalyptic society, one where humans had no ears and no eyes. Blind and deaf and dumb. And he could guide them. He could make them have clay ears, clay eyes, and clay senses. He could become the great molder like his brother, to become a claymaker who could bring to life so many wonderful things that he knew would make life so much better, this gray, February life.
And he decided. He decided, as much as how blind, deaf and dumb he was too. He wasn’t much different than the humans in that regard.
He held the jeweled pen between his thumb and forefinger, clicking it every so often, the gold peeking in and out. He couldn’t decipher much else on the contract. Only that he would become a God, and fight for all of the deaf and blind and dumb humans who needed help on this planet. Much like the raven god, who decided to help them, but for some reason wasn’t a favorite with this fairy creature.
He wrote a big cursive S on the paper, until the raven god cawed, it flapped its great stormy weather feathers, and it soared off into the sky, towards the blood-hurdled sunset, and it plucked the pen from Sonic’s hand, as much blink and notice as the ten minutes that suddenly passed between them. And the raven god cawed again, and it flew off into the far reaches of the Seattle city, gone, with a precious pen that could’ve so much as made Sonic into a breather of life and a dealer of death.
The fairy creature took care not to curse when he almost had someone sign his life to work for his will, and he knew that he much hated the raven god, the god that he signed with so many years ago, the god that continues to rebel against him, the one that took his sun and stars away as he carefully planned and pinned them in the sky, and he wished he could make him dead, strip him of all his godliness much like stripping the skin away from the prime cut meat that laid bloodied and thick with juices of what the body used to be in, but he could only laugh, with his teeth made of thorns, with his cotton-tuft tail protruding away from him, and he told them that he now had more time to think of it, as pens he made for the contract took a day to make, and he couldn’t make them so quickly as he had to mold them into shape much like a claymaker creating all the animals and all the people (who were blind, deaf, and dumb as he planned them to be) as they were imbued with all the things that made him into a god, imbued with ambrosia and mead, and he told them that now because of the raven god, the god that he so much hated when he gave him everything that he needed to make his life a torturous hell even though this fairy like creature had everything and anything that could make him happy. He had more time to think of bringing back to life his brother, Anansi, the creator of stories, the webber of fiction and reality, the constructor of lies and truths.
He wasn’t sure of how long the bitterness between both the raven god and this Fay creature began, but he assumed it was so long that every time they met there was a fly of spit and teeth and cursing as the raven tried to get him to sign as little as people as possible, as if he was…protecting them. Protecting them all of a fate that they couldn’t face. Not even if they were the strongest god of all. As if the raven itself knew of a world that was coming down to its very last threads, and only he knew, and not these blind deaf and dumb creatures like him.
He didn’t assume the raven god was necessarily a bad god. He must be good if he was his brother’s favorite animal. He seemed to know about him and the death of his brother somehow, as if the entire world was connected via web, much like his brother has done with his stories.
Maybe he worked with him. Anansi and the raven god, working to fight off all the evil in the world…
He clutched his book even tighter. The satyr like god could only sigh, and tell him, “Come back near the shores tomorrow. I cannot do much else if the damned raven god takes my pen and flies away with it. It is the pen that makes people into gods, and unless you can get it back from the raven god (which will be a really tricky maneuver as the raven god has a limitless list of tricks) then we cannot bring your brother back to life. I realize that becoming a god means so much responsibility, and you Sonic, still cannot handle the burden of your brother’s death. But if either you find the pen or I make a new one (which will take a while, as it is fashioned out of mercury and rubies and gold and silver…oh did I say mercury? Hopefully you don’t get the poison in your brain. It is a very nettling toxin that will make you insane but enough about that), and we can come to a deal. Or you can just pretend this whole thing never happened. Never meeting us, never seeing the experience your eyes have cradled upon, never having almost limitless powers and never dying of either disease or age…unlike your brother. You will become a mightier god than that. Because I have more faith in you. Your brother fancied too much on the arts and was never much of a fighter…”
He frowned, as he looked at the binder. The fairy could only smile, as if he knew exactly what he was thinking in his mind. As if he was his little lamb about to fall for the wolf’s costume.
His life was boring. Except for the death of his brother, nothing happened for around 16 years. He was getting around to graduating high school, but he never found much of that a major accomplishment. It was expected of him. Then there was college. He didn’t much care for it either, and in fact, wasn’t exactly sure on what he would major in. He wanted to no longer be bounded and pinioned by society and the educational system and the fact that everyone around him wants him to have a job and a life and a wife and kids. What if he didn’t want to live like everyone else with their vanilla and white lives? What if he wanted chocolate? What if he wanted it to be black or any other color he chose? He wanted to be free. Much like his brother. Writing whenever he wanted, doing what he mostly enjoyed, being free from the restraints of high school and college since he was too sick sometimes to even attend classes…even if he was clutched by the throes of illness, he respected his brother for living a carefree life, and if he was alive, and no longer sick, he wanted to live that life with him too.
To live a life of no boundaries. Nothing that told him “no”. Nothing that told him to stop. He loved his brother’s stories because they all were adventures in themselves. And he wanted to live a life of adventure. He wanted to feel the wind moving through his veins, he wanted to feel it gush past between his teeth and mouth and tongue and devour it like he was starved for so long…he wanted to be a free man, out of this social prison, and if he could find the pen that the raven god stole, then maybe…
Maybe he could give it all up, to live a life that was basically crime fighting. To do nearly anything he pleased. To no longer live the life of wretchedness without his brother, the brother that he held in his arms when he was an infant. The brother that he promised to love and take care of for as long as he could live. And he thought his brother’s life was cut too short, by Fate’s scissors.
He smiled, a small smile that seemed like a thin pencil line to the artist as he drew his caricatures. He still held onto his story, the little black plastic binder near his heart as he said, “I’ll be right back.” He could feel the story becoming one with him, nearly attached to his chest as if it was his second heart, as the sky turned violet, hues of blue and black and red. He could see the stars shining on him, the gods that beckoned him to join them in their constellations, to be with Taurus, to fight the galaxy eating dragons with Orion, to drink from the Big Dipper with much zest, to sip the stars and the black night sky with his parched lips that he knew that he had to be a god, there was no other option, it was written in black and white inside his brother’s stories, and he would bring him back, and they could live among the stars together.
Because that was what brothers did.
The moon was blue, as blue as him, as it casted down on the black icy sea, the sea dragon’s one eye peeking as he ran across the pier, into the outskirts of the city.
He was going to set himself free.