The Plane

Posted: August 19, 2014 in Writing
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Amber sits, belt latched and hands clasped, as the plane prepares for takeoff, “Please lord let this plane take me to my destination safely.” she whispers. She never changes the routine. Don’t fix what isn’t broken, isn’t that what they say? As the plane lifts off a man jumps into the seat next to Amber, grabbing and buckling the seat belt.

“Hello. I’m Gio.” he states extending his scarred rough hand to her. Amber, who is looking out the window, peeks at Gio. “Hi.” says Gio, waving his hand a little. Amber turns and looks back out the window, hoping Gio will get the hint and go back to his seat. As the plane reaches cruising altitude Amber turns to face front. Gio is still sitting there, with his hand out.

Amber turns, “What do you want?” she states coolly.

Gio stares into her eyes, “Just wanted to say hello. I noticed you said a little prayer before takeoff. You believe in god?”

Amber takes a closer look at Gio. He has translucent white skin with a scar running diagonally across his face and some smaller scars on his neck. His hair is short and dark brown with silver streaks. “I don’t think that is any business of yours.”

“Just an observation, you seemed a bit nervous, that’s all. I also believe.”  says Gio.

Amber looks out the window and rolls her eyes. Oh god I hope he doesn’t start preaching to me she thinks. “That’s nice.” she says matter of factly.

Gio squirms in his seat. The captain comes on the intercom, “We have reached our cruising altitude of 35,000 feet. It should take about 2 hours to reach our destination. Bermuda is 70 degrees and sunny. Please sit back and enjoy the flight.”

Gio unbuckles his seat, “Do you want a water? I’m going to get one.”

“Sure.” Amber says absentmindedly.

Gio walks to the front of the plane and speaks with the stewardess for a couple of minutes. She hands him some drinks. Gio comes back to the aisle seat in Amber’s row. “I got water and peanuts! Always be courteous.” he smiles and holds out the water and peanuts for Amber. She looks over, “Thanks.” Amber takes the snacks.

“No problem.” says Gio, smiling. “I think we can maybe get a free beer or whiskey if we are very nice.”

Amber opens the bottle, takes a sip then rips open the bag of peanuts, spilling some. She grabs the loose nuts, puts them in her mouth, then dumps in the rest of the bag. Her cheeks bulge slightly like a chipmunk while she chews. When she is done Amber washes the salt and peanut bits down with her water.

Gio looks at her, “I knew you were a peanut person, I can tell these things.”

Amber looks over at him, “Really, how is that?”

“It’s one of my talents. I can figure things out about people. Some say it’s a gift, but I think it’s mostly a curse.” he states.

Amber looks at him quizzically.

“The one thing I am really good at figuring out isn’t the cheeriest news for anyone to hear,” Gio states, “It’s actually rather morbid.”

Amber leans toward Gio slightly, he now has her full attention, “Go on.”

“I really don’t think you want to know. You won’t be happy.” Gio says.

“Try me.” Amber challenges.

Gio looks her in the eye, then turns and looks around the plane to see if anyone is listening to the conversation. Most passengers appear to be engrossed in a movie or listening to music. He leans close, there is a faint odor of lilies as he whispers, “I know when people are going to die.”

Amber almost laughs, “What? That’s just silly, now I know you’re just making stuff up.”

Amber looks out the window. A couple of rows in front of them the stewardess is pouring drinks and hands out small bags of pretzels. When Amber turns back to look at Gio he isn’t smiling. “Now might be a good time for that beer,” Gio says.

“Better make it a whiskey.” Amber smiles politely.

Gio nods and turns to speak with the stewardess who has just stopped the cart in front of their row. “Anything to drink sir?” She asks.

“Yes please!” Gio says charmingly, “One lite beer for me and a whiskey for my friend.”

The stewardess looks over at Amber who nods. A beer and a whiskey are delivered to Gio and Amber. “Thank you very much Amy.” states Gio, reading her nametag.

“It’s on the house.” says Amy with a wink. Gio smiles large. Amy moves the cart to the next set of rows.

Gio leans in to whisper again, “Ha! We did get free booze, Cheers.” Gio touches his beer can to Amber’s plastic cup of whiskey and takes a sip. Amber slams the whiskey feeling the burn in her throat as it disappears. She coughs a bit, and sets the empty cup down on the tray-table.

“So,” Amber says, clearing her throat, “Is there a reason you are on this flight and talking to me.”

“Well, there is, but I’m not allowed to say.” Gio says.

Amber looks out the window. Tears begin to flow from her eyes. As she cries her body begins to tremble a bit. “We’re going to die, aren’t we? Who are you really?” Amber asks.

Gio gently touches Ambers shoulder, “I am the angel of death, I escort all to their final destination.”

Amber looks at him, wiping the tears from her eyes. “I don’t understand. Why? Shouldn’t you, I mean don’t you just come and…” Amber’s voice trails off.

“I sometimes appear to a select few to ease them into the afterlife, give them comfort.” Gio says softly.

The plane lurches, shakes violently, and begins to lose altitude quickly. Passengers around Gio and Amber scream and begin to cry as the plane continues its plunge. Airbags drop from the overhead compartment and people begin to put them on. The captains voice comes over the speaker. “Stewardesses, prepare the cabin for crash landing.”

Amber leans forward and grabs her knees. Gio grabs Ambers hand, holding it gently. “All will be fine, you are loved,” he whispers. Somehow Amber heard him clearly over the roar of the plane. As the plane hits Amber looks at Gio, the plane begins to break around him and a piece of metal shears off the back of his seat passing right through him.

When the plane stops smoke and fire begin to fill the cabin. Amber sits up and looks around, “I survived?”

Gio nods his head. “But, you said,” Amber begins to protest.

Gio holds a finger to his mouth, “shh,” then fades away.

Amber unbuckles and begins to move toward the nearest exit away from the fire. Behind her she hears the scream of a baby and a mother pleading, “Help! Help! I can’t…save my baby!”

Amber stops and looks behind her, no one else is there, she takes a step forward then turns and moves quickly to the back of the plane.

The baby and mother are sitting midway back, the baby is sitting in his car seat crying. The mother looks at Amber and then down at her lap. The seat in front of her has pinned and crushed her legs, “I can’t move.”

Amber tenses and pulls, but is unable to move the seat.

“Please just save my baby.” pleads the mother.

After unbuckling the belt around the baby seat, Amber takes one last look at the mother, then turns and races out of the plane as flames begin to engulf all of it. An explosion knocks Amber to the ground, the baby and seat tumble and end face up staring at Amber. She tries to move, but is unable.

“He’ll be fine, it’s time to go.” Gio whispers.

Amber turns her head. Gio has beautiful large white wings and a pale but unblemished complexion. He holds out his hand, “Time to see your grandparents.”

Amber smiles.


Copyright © 2014 J. Power

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