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THE WAY HOME

"Home is not a place, it's a feeling." - Cecelia Ahern

By C.B. VisionsPublished about a month ago Updated about a month ago 3 min read
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(photo taken by Clive Oliver, used with his permission)

The digital clock above the subway station flickered, signalled the last minute before midnight. Jack Weary walked among the tired crowd, eager to catch the last train home after a long day’s work. As he glanced at the clock, a sense of urgency washed over him. One minute left to get to the platform. He needed to catch this last subway or risk being stranded in the city overnight.

With a quickened pace, he maneuvered through the throng of people, dodging shoulders and briefcases as he raced towards the platform. The distant rumble grew louder, the telltale sign of the approaching train.

Once again, the escalator leading to the platform was out of order, forcing him to walk down. Many times, this escalator had saved him and even today he really could use the extra speed. But there was nothing that could be done and he had to climb the steep stairs on his own.

Half the way down, Jack could see the subway’s headlights emerging from the darkness of the tunnel.

Thirty seconds left…

His heart pounded in his chest as he sprinted down the escalator, the echoes of his footsteps reverberating against the tiled walls. Again he realized that he should give up on fast food and his smoking habit, instead he should spend more time in a gym. His poor physical constitution became a risk that he could ignore for any longer. In his age, the risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke potentially increased.

Jack reached the platform just as the train screeched to a halt, doors sliding open with a mechanical hiss, unloading its human cargo. Within seconds, the platform was filled with a real hustle and bustle; people tried to push for the exit, while others tried to get on the train.

Jack Weary was no exception, and pushed his way through the crowd. With some difficulty, he got closer to the open doors of the subway.

As he leaped into the carriage, relief flooded through him. He finally made it, just a few more stops till he reached home now.

But as the doors began closing, a figure emerged from the crowded platform. It was Emil, Jack’s ex-girlfriend. Their glances locked for a fleeting moment. A torrent of emotions crashed down on him. Regret. Longing. And he felt not a small amount of guilt towards her/him. Emilia had never made a secret of the fact that she had been born in the wrong body and preferred the name Emil. However, he had dismissed it as nonsense until she actually started to transform more and more into the man she was today. Something he could not handle at all.

Jack hesitated, torn between the quick return home and the unresolved feelings that still lingered in his heart.

Fifteen seconds left…

Time seemed to stand still as he debated his next move. Emil’s lips parted, as if he wanted to say something, but no words escaped him. Instead, the slight smile on his face turned into an expression of sadness. Emil took a step forward, as if he wanted to reenter the subway, but then paused again.

Ten seconds left…

Jack’s mind raced with indecision. Should he stay or should he go? The train hummed beneath him, vibrating with the promise of escape. However, the more he looked into his eyes, he realized that certain things needed to be said.

He could no longer count the nights he laid awake, racking his brain about it. No matter how hard he tried, he could not ban Emil from his heart. At the same time he knew with absolute certainty, he was not gay. So how should a continuation of the relationship work? Their separation was the best for both of them, wasn’t it?

Five seconds left…

The doors were already closing. With a leap of faith, Jack jumped forward, back onto the platform.

“Emmy, wait!” His hands reached out to grasp Emil’s hand. Their fingers intertwined the moment the carriages doors finally closed. His fate was sealed now.

One second left…

Jack and Emil stood on the platform, watched the subway slowly departing. The clock struck midnight, ended a minute of fate between two men, who truly loved each other, despite the obstacles that life forced upon them. Neither of them knew what would be next; however, they were willing to figure everything out together.

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Thank you for reading. Every feedback is welcomed, so feel free to let me know, how you liked what you just read. And if your time's allowing it, be welcomed to check out my other creations here on vocal.

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About the Creator

C.B. Visions

An author, who writes tales of human encounters with nature and wildlife. I dive into the depths of the human psyche, offering an insights into our connection with the world around us, inviting us on a journeys. (Christian Bass)

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  • Kelli Sheckler-Amsdenabout a month ago

    Loved the countdown...great idea and well executed

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