I felt the grains of sand slide between my toes and stick to my bare feet as I walked across the beach, the shallow water curling around my ankles and beckoning me into the dark abyss. I stopped and stared at the ocean, taking in the inky depths that must surely be underneath. I imagined what it would be like to simply walk into those depths and never return again.
I ran my fingers along my itching wrist, feeling the bumps from healing wounds under my fingers. I rolled up my sleeve to see the numbers tattooed beneath the red that decorated my skin like some sort of sick lattice. I couldn’t help but run my fingers over the cuts that were supposed to rid me of that cursed clock in morbid fascination.
3 hours, 25 minutes, 10 seconds.
I tore my sleeve down back over the clock, wanting once again to try and cut it off of me. With nothing to do so, I shoved my hands in my pockets, feeling the pain of jostling the still-healing cuts shoot up my arm. I leant my head back and sighed in relief, feeling the sharp, yet reliable embrace of pain once again. It didn’t help me any, but it was familiar. I embraced it.
It subsided, though. It left me, like everything has before. I stand alone on a beach with a clock ticking away on my wrist, endlessly remind me of how long I’ve been on this world, and how long before I stop.
I berated myself for delaying. If I wanted to beat the clock, I needed to get a move on. Damn the clock. I was going to do this my way.
I strode across the beach, feeling confident about something for the first time in years. I walked away from the beach and along the side of the road that lead up to the top of the pristine white cliffs nearby. Cars flew by me, most telling me I was crazy, but some asking if I needed a lift. I looked at my clock, 1 hour, 49 minutes, 34 seconds, and politely declined. I was almost to the top anyway.
My feet settled on the grass at the edge of the cliffs and I stood, feeling the sea breeze against my face and the salty air assaulting my senses. I glanced at my clock. 20 minutes, 12 seconds.
I still had a little time to spare, and it would be so simple. I sat down on the edge, crossing my legs and staring out into the endless sea. It would soon be my home.
A warm sense of finality rushed over me, and I closed my eyes to let it settle over my soul, finally feeling a sense of peace. It would be last thing I feel - I’d make sure of it.
I opened my eyes again, hearing a car driving up the road behind me. I looked to my clock.
I gasped and scrambled to my feet, seeing the slick spot in the road where the car would undoubtedly slip on and hit me. I turned back to the cliffs, hearing the screeching tires. I would beat this clock. I would have control over this one part of my life.
I spread my arms wide, taking what I knew to be my last deep breath.
I leaned forward.
I heard the driver of the car shout.
And I flew.