Short Story Contest Submission: Ierra Miole – Time’s Up

This is the last submission for the Short Story Contest. VOTING IS OPEN NOW!

Time’s up!

by Ierra Miole

            It was an ordinary day for me. I woke up and cleaned my house. Every day has the same happenings and what will happen next was predictable, a daily routine. If only my father is here, at least that daily routine would change. But it has been three years of not seeing him and the last letter from my father that says he will come back, was three years ago. And until now, he is still gone.

The boredom that we always feel is like a virus that loses up our energy. Maybe that’s the reason why people always have a complaint because every day, they have the same things to do. And because I am one of them, I’m used to it. And maybe that’s the reason why I am very conscious of time.

But I didn’t imagine that this boring life would end up so soon. I am just walking in the mall when I met a man. He bumped me and my pouch fell. The guy picked it up and smile at me as he gave the pouch. Then one woman shouted from my back.

“A thief!! A thief!” she said.

“What happen?” asked the security guard.

“That guy took my wallet!” the woman replied, pointing to the direction of the guy who bumped me.

The guy ran and hid at the back of the cashier when the security guard ran towards us. And when the guy, or thief, get his gun and shoot the security guard, I hid. The security guard shoots back. Every one was shouting. Then one boy runs. Her mother tried to stop her little child because it was too dangerous. But she is in the direction where the gunman, the thief, is shooting. I quickly shield her but unluckily, I got shot. I fell down and I saw the thief looking at me and run quickly.

I stood up and every one was shouting. When I look down, I saw myself lying down with blood all over. I am dead!! I was so shocked and I closed my eyes, when I opened my eyes, the great light lead my way to somewhere. The place was great but I am afraid that it was heaven. Then one man from behind told me,

“Don’t be mistaken, Charm. This is not what you’re thinking. Don’t find someone and don’t complain. Just listen to what I say. Do you understand me, Charm?” he said. I nodded anxiously.

“Charm, what do you remember about what happened to you?” he asks.

“I . . . I got shot in the mall. Here!” I said pointing in my chest. ”I got shot here. But what’s happening? . . . I want to know what I’m doing here and where I am.” I added.

“You are dead . . . about ten minutes ago.” he replied.

“What?! Dead?!!! I am dead? No! That can’t be!! I am still alive. Here I can feel my heartbeat! I don’t want to be dead yet. ” I complaint, crying.

“Then give me one good reason why you want to live again.”

“I have many reasons why I have to stay. My father said he will come back soon.” I replied, still crying.

“I am not convinced with that reason.”

“I have many things to do in my life like having a husband, a child and a family. I don’t want to be dead yet.”

“Do you think that would happen if you live again?”

“All I know is that many beautiful things will happen in my life. I just want to live.”

“That will only happen if you accomplish this mission. Find the boy that wears a cap with a white skull in it. Know him well. Your mission is to change his personality in just three days. If you didn’t change it, you can’t live again…This is your first day Charm. . .”

When I close my eyes and open it again, I saw myself in the middle of a street, finding the boy with a cap and a sign of white skull in it. I look at all the man that wears a cap if it has a sign of white skull in it. Then I saw a boy that was being bullied. He wears a brown cap with a sign of white skull. When I am about to run towards him, the man from the great place informed me.

“Charm, He is Noel. The one who shot you.” he said.

“But the one who shot me wasn’t a boy, I’m sure and I still remember his face.” I said, insisting.

“Ten years from now. You will meet that boy again and ten years from now, he is a criminal already. And now you have the chance to change him.” he said. I look to the boy and when I’m about to ask again the man, he’s gone.

I followed the boy and when I saw him talking with his friends, or with his siblings maybe, I called him.

“Noel! Noel!” I shouted.

“Why? Who are you and why do you know my name, huh?” he asked.

“I just want to be your friend.” I replied

“Wow. Cool. Why, because you like me, huh? Sorry I’m too young to have a girlfriend.” he said.

“I just want to be your friend, all of you!” I said, smiling.

“If you want to be our friend, you must eat like this—” He bit the stem of sugarcane he was holding and discard the chewed stalk. “Here, try it.” He gave the stem to me and I tried what he had done.

Then a group of boys came, Noel quickly go in their direction. I asked his friends,

“Who are they?”

“Those are the GG Boys and that boy that Noel is talking with is Bernard, their leader.” he said. Then the GG Boys together with Noel was gone in my sight.

I found Noel holding a broken bottle of beer. He threw it when I go near to him.

“For whom is that beer? You are drinking alcohol already?”

“Of course, not. I don’t want the taste. That beer is for Bernard,” he answered.

“Well, you know, alcoholic drinks are dangerous to one’s health.”

“Well, I don’t care!” he replied and runs quickly inside the cemetery. I followed him. Then he hid in one of the tomb there and surprised me. In my surprised, he accidentally kissed my cheeks.

“If you agree, I wanna be your boyfriend when I grow up because I like you!’’ he said. I smiled. Then he quickly runs. I stopped him.

“Hey! Where are you going?” I said.

“In our condominium,” he replied.

“What?”

“Why? You don’t know what a condominium is?”

“Of course I know, but a condominium inside a cemetery?”

“Wew!” he said then he runs again. I followed him again.

I get in a house and there I found Noel’s picture with her mother. Then a man came. He was drunk so I quickly got out. I found Noel walking towards me. He told me not to follow him anymore. When I’m about to tell my story why I have to follow him, the GG boys came and Noel went with them.

The next day, I sought for him again and I found him stealing some food. He said it is not for him, but for the GG boys. I paid the food and allow Noel to go again somewhere.

After some time, I saw him again, crying with his mother’s picture and a wound in his hand. He told me that he fought with his father. He told his story and I also told a little story about my father. Noel hates his father for driving his mother away. He cried and I hugged him for comfort. But the GG boys came. I told Noel not to go with them but I can’t stop him.

That night, I stay outside their house, waiting for him to come back. But I found his father and talked to him. His father said that Noel‘s mother have another man and Noel is not his true son but he still love Noel as a son. I asked him to help Noel to change and he agreed.

I went out and search for Noel. I found him in the middle of arguing with Bernard. I scolded Bernard.

“Why? Who do you think you are, young lady?!” Bernard said.

“He’s my friend!” Noel replied.

“Okay, But remember what I said to you last time because when you didn’t come, you will never be a part of our gang!” Bernard said then he goes away.

On our way home, Noel was so quiet. I told him to go home early because his father is waiting for him. He got angry to what I have said and didn’t believe in it. He also told me not to follow him anymore but as he goes away from me, I hugged him and let him cry in my arms. I told him that his father loves him and all fathers love their children. Because of what he heard, he ran away. Then a voice from heaven said,

“Charm, today is your last day.”

I quickly went to their house and found there some food. Noel’s father is waiting for him. He said that he already sought for Noel outside but he didn’t find him. I went out to his friend’s house and sit to think. Noel’s friend sits beside me and said something.

“Miss Charm, I just want to tell something about Noel.” he said

“What is it?” I replied.

“Noel is going with Bernard in the grocery. They will steal something there and sell it. That’s what Bernard does and he want Noel to be like them so that Noel can be a part of the gang.” he continues.

Then Noel came. I quickly went to his direction and told him to go home because his father is waiting for him.

“Oh, you’re here. . I must go.” he said in low voice.

“Wait Noel, listen to me. Don’t destroy your life just because you hate your father. He didn’t drove your mother away, she left.” I said.

“Liar! He drove my mother!”

“If you didn’t change, your life will be destroyed. Do you want to be a criminal just like Bernard? Huh? And kill someone…like…m… Noel, stealing is bad! If you continue doing that, your life would be miserable! You still have a chance to change, please Noel do it for yourself.” I said, crying. Then Noel ran away from me.

I went to his friends and said goodbye to them. Then, a voice from heaven said,

“Charm, I’m sorry but your time is up.”

I went to the light and accepted my destiny.

“I am sorry I didn’t accomplish my mission. I did my best but it didn’t work. I will accept now my death and I already forgive Noel,” I said, “anyway, I’m prepared to die.”

Then the place turns to white again. I found myself in the mall, hiding for safety. I saw a woman cried for her child that ran and I shield her. Then I felt someone pushed us downward to avoid the bullet. The thief was killed by the security guard and when I stand up, I saw Noel, an adult Noel who saved my life. I was shocked, and then a voice from heaven said,

“Congratulations! You deserve to live.”

In my last night with young Noel, Noel went home and said sorry to his father. Noel didn’t come with Bernard, instead, he lives peacefully with his father and so, I am, with him now and with my father who finally came.

Many things could happen in life that we are not expecting, even in the last hour, and in the last minute.

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