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The evening of life.
'Twas by far the chilliest night of the year. A cold breeze rubbed itself
bitterly against old Mr. Vandark's dry wrinkled skin. He hurriedly pressed his
folded hands against his chest and jogged indoors hoping for some warmth.
Surprisingly, after a while, sitting on his furry couch facing his old unkempt
window, it started to become unpleasantly hot. He decided to open the
front door, which was at a considerable distance so he knew it shouldn't become
He merely sat there for hours, his thoughts seemed so vague sometimes, even
to himself. He expected it had something to do with old age. He decided to let
the darkness come and go that night. Starring out at an old Banyan tree that
came with the house he now lived in, his mind wandering to all his past homes
and then to his now gone family whilst the untampered darkness of a moonless
night crept through his windows and blinded whatever remained of his sight.
Less than an hour later, he felt the darkness not only creep through his window
but also penetrate his brain, pushing away all his recent thoughts and findings
and bringing in new thoughts of hopeless despair to fill in their place. The
darkness induced insanity amplified by his weakened old mind made him completely
incapable of summoning up any manner of proper thinking he possessed.
He closed his eyes but unfortunately it didn't make any difference. He
struggled in the total blackness knowing that the only exit was to miraculously
fall asleep, but for hours all he was able to do was shift uncomfortably in
his chair a few times. He began to see things. Absurdly colourful shapes mocked him from inside his own head. As the rest of the world began to slumber, his
ears started to deceive him as well. An unremitting high pitched note dragged on
as though it had always been there like the stars. Everything in the world was
asleep then why wasn't he? He was tired and longed very much for a nice long nap.
Even time itself seemed to have retired for the night, or at least it didn't
seem to go at its usual pace.
Above all he felt terribly lonesome. At his age he should have had children and
grand children to help him with such situations but unfortunately his only son
had passed away just after he started schooling. So here he was; a childless
widower. All alone and humming tunelessly just for something to distract him
while waiting for sleep to come.
Mr. Vandark got his sleep that night. It was the sleep he had been expecting
ever since the death of his beloved wife. A sleep that never ended.
© 2013 Marianne Hingert