The Hotel Suite
The Hotel Suite
He rubbed the knuckle of his right forefinger across his mustache and looked quietly into the mirror. Standing beside the handsome mahogany desk, in the spacious sitting room of his hotel suite. He seemed somewhat overshadowed by his imposing surroundings. The windows had such a clear view of the sea, and the beaches were lined with fruit trees. Everything about it, in both style and size, was suggestive of appropriate surroundings for luminaries.
In his long experience as a married man, he had come to learn that it is the man of undistinguished appearance, which does not stand out from the crowd at any gathering, and is frequently the most to be overlooked, or forgotten.
The movement of his hand was slow, but deliberate. He selected a sheet from the stack of engraved note paper before him. Took out his own pen and started to write his thoughts down. What he wrote down was swift, definite and without waste of effort. He placed the note on the bed. Moved it around a little bit, and then was happy to lay it directly in the center.
The chair by the window looked comfortable. He moved toward it and sat down. He stretched his long legs, leaning back, pressed his hands to his head as if exerting a great pressure on his temples.
Conversation in his suite was lagging a little. He wanted to keep his thoughts racing so he wouldn’t think about what he had planned to do. The silence was an inward irritation and the quiet was an absolute mistake. He had to have noise. There had to be someone talking. He ran over to the television and turned it on manually without the remote control. He wanted to watch the news, but he didn’t change the channel. He couldn’t get total control over his sanity. This has meant a complete readjustment of plans for his suicide. His sanity held some inevitable arguments about it. It only made matters worse, for he turned around, smiling broadly, and spoke to the image in the mirror in rapid incomprehensible French. And yet he never took a French lesson in his whole life.
After shouting and screaming at his reflection, he saw a disturbing image. It was a man’s head, blood coursing from the torn neck, the eyes wild with insanity, the hair matted and wet with blood. The image was like shimmering needles in his eyes. He turned quickly around and slumped over the comfortable chair.
He slowly lifted himself up like a man with dignity. He turned around to face the mirror again, and the image was still there. He didn’t understand, but he displayed no fear. There were circumstances which indicated that the dead man did not come to an end from natural causes. The injuries looked too severe for natural causes. It looked like he jumped from a window and landed on his head.
He lit a cigarette and stood with it between his fingers, watching a crowd gather below his window. He pressed his lips closely together and looked closer. He dropped the cigarette and looked back at the mirror. There was no haunting image, and there was no reflection looking back. For a moment he felt alive, but then realized that he had already jumped.
© 2011 Frank Atanacio
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