Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: End Times (02/27/14)
TITLE: A Hard Ending
By Ken Grant
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“What happened?” Darren cried out to a universe that seemed completely unconcerned with his pain.
Even the neighborhood seemed to sense that this was a holy moment; a time of change where nothing would ever be the same. He was standing in the very place where fifteen years ago he had carried his bride across the threshold. Those were times of optimism. They believed in each other and in the future. Two girls and a boy had been born and were growing up within these walls, but now he would no longer be an integral part of their lives. He would see them like old friends who came to visit for a few days before moving on. Their lives would diverge and there was nothing that he could do about it. Darren knelt down and prayed.
“Father, I’m really hurting here. There is a pain in my heart that will not go away. I never wanted this to happen. I hate this. Please help me.”
Darren rose to his feet and brushed some dirt off of his pants. Slowly, one hard step at a time, he walked down the path toward his car. The weight of the end was upon him and it grew stronger with each step away. It would never be the same again.
“Hello, Mr. Anderson,” A young woman waved as she pedaled her bicycle down the sidewalk and on to her destination.
Darren gave her a half-hearted wave before getting in his car and starting it up. The reality of the end was upon him. He looked over at the home that was no longer his. He put his face on the steering wheel and allowed the painful tears to roll down his face. Finally he had nothing left to give. The finality covered him like a shroud. He pulled his car onto the familiar street and drove away. He had heard all the talk about it being for the best. He had heard his wife explain how they had merely grown apart. It all seemed so cold and clinical. It had felt far too easy. Their lives had begun with such hope, but it was a hard ending. He held on to hope for the future, but this hard ending would take a very long time to overcome.
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