‘ when i was a kid, whenever i’d feel small or lonely, i’d look up at the stars. wondered if there was life up there. ‘
‘ tens of thousands of lives were lost. ‘
‘ this was just the beginning. ‘
‘ to fight monsters, we created monsters of our own. ‘
‘ we got really good at it. winning. ‘
‘ hey, kid. don’t get cocky. ‘
‘ please, after you. age before beauty. ‘
‘ you know what i’m thinking. ‘
‘ worry about yourself, kiddo! ‘
‘ ___, listen to me! ‘
‘ suits and ties, flashy smiles. that’s all they are. ‘
‘ bad news: three guys died yesterday. ‘
‘ well, orders are orders. what else am i supposed to do? ‘
‘ took me a while to find you. ‘
‘ i can’t have anyone else in my head again. i’m done. ‘
‘ haven’t you heard? the world is coming to an end. ‘
‘ so where would you rather die? here, or ____? ‘
‘ oh, no, call me ___. only my mother calls me doctor. ‘
‘ he was 2,500 tons of awesome. or awful. you know, whatever you wanna call it. ‘
‘ shut up. i don’t love them, okay? i study them. ‘
‘ things have changed. we’re not an army anymore, we’re the resistance. ‘
‘ i didn’t know it was this bad. ‘
‘ sorry about your brother. ‘
‘ you haven’t told me what i’m doing here yet. ‘
‘ numbers do not lie. politics and poetry, promises, these are lies. numbers are as close as we get to the handwriting of god. ‘
‘ politics and poetry, promises, these are lies. ‘
‘ and this… is the point where he goes completely crazy. ‘
‘ fortune favors the brave, dude. ‘
‘ they won’t give you the equipment, and even if they did, you’d kill yourself. ‘
‘ she’s one of a kind now. ‘
‘ i think you’re unpredictable. ‘
‘ you take risks that endanger yourself and your crew. i don’t think you’re the right man for this mission. ‘
‘ wow. thank you for your honesty. ‘
‘ one day, you’re gonna see that in combat you make decisions. and you have to live with the consequences. ‘
‘ you promised me. ‘
‘ vengeance is like an open wound. ‘
‘ to me, you’re dead weight. you slow me down, i’m gonna drop you like a sack of shit. ‘
‘ i’ve raised him on my own. he’s a smart kid, but i never knew whether to give him a hug or a kick in the ass. ‘
‘ it’s a dialogue, not a fight. ‘
‘ better watch it. ‘
‘ i’m not crazy. you felt it, right? ‘
‘ this is worth fighting for. ‘
‘ if you’re listening to this, well, i’m either alive and i’ve proven what i’ve just done works, in which case, ha ha, i won. or i’m dead and i’d like you to know that it’s all your fault. it really is, you know, you drove me to this. in which case, ha, i also won. sort of. ‘
‘ are you gonna say anything? ‘
‘ you look good. ‘
‘ like when you blink your eyes over and over and over again and all you really see are like, frames. it was emotion. ‘
‘ i’m okay. just let me control it. ‘
‘ you are a goddamn disgrace. you’re gonna get us all killed. ‘
‘ why don’t you just do us all a favor and disappear? it’s the only thing you’re good at. ‘
‘ so, what, you’re grounding us? ‘
‘ one: don’t you ever touch me again. two: don’t you ever touch me again. ‘
‘ now, you have no idea who the hell i am or where i’ve come from, and i’m not about to tell you my whole life story. ‘
‘ you know, you live in someone else’s head for so long… the hardest part to deal with is the silence. ‘
‘ well, that’s classified. so i couldn’t tell you. even if i wanted to. but it is pretty cool, so i might tell you. i’m gonna tell you. ‘
‘ jesus, we can’t just sit here and watch them die. ‘
‘ let me in, i’m a doctor! ‘
‘ we have a choice here. we either sit and wait, or we take these flare guns and do something really stupid. ‘
‘ as harsh as it sounds, there is no time to celebrate. we lost people. no time to grieve. ‘
‘ how sick are you? and why didn’t you tell me? ‘
‘ i haven’t exactly had a very good day, okay? ‘
‘ we’re gonna own this bad boy! ‘
‘ by jove, we are going to own this thing for sure! ‘
‘ today, at the edge of our hope, at the end of our time, we have chosen not only to believe in ourselves, but in each other. ‘
‘ today we are canceling the apocalypse! ‘
‘ as for you, well, you’re easy. you’re an egotistical jerk with daddy issues. a simple puzzle i solved on day one. ‘
‘ i just don’t want to regret all the things that i never said out loud. ‘
‘ well, my father always said, if you have the shot, you take it. so let’s do this. ‘
‘ all i have to do is fall. anyone can fall. ‘
‘ i can’t find his pulse. i don’t think he’s breathing. ‘
‘ no. don’t go. please. ‘
‘ you’re squeezing me too tight. i couldn’t breathe. ‘
An impossibly large log floats in the water. It floats independently from the direction of the current. You wonder dimly where it came from and where it’s going.
You take a walk down the beach, your dog trotting by your side. You set your destination for a dock in the distance. You walk for hours, days, years. You keep walking, your dog no longer by your side, your body no longer young. You briefly wonder if your family misses you. The dock seems to taunt you, the distance unchanged.
Trees shake and groan in the forest. Birds scatter away. You hear the sound of root systems being ripped from the earth. There is no wind.
It has been raining for years. Rain hits windshields with such force and volume that drivers can no longer see. The drivers faces seem relaxed, almost happy. They are being driven, not by themselves, but by a force they cannot even begin to fathom. Occasionally their cars hydroplanes. It does not matter. They are not in control.
You see a woman in jeans and a hoodie tentatively touch the water. You see her flinch back. You see this woman wade into the water. You see her teeth chattering from the cold. You see the woman walk uneasily into the water, immersing herself fully. You can’t see the woman any longer.
A man at the beach is feeding seagulls from his car. He throws bread and seeds out his window, a flock of bird gathering. His eyes are unfocused, his brow furrowed into an emotion that borders between concern and fear. If you were to approach him, you would hear his breathless murmuring. You do not approach him.
In the distance you hear a train horn blaring. You hear it get progressively louder, accompanied by the deep rumbling of the earth below you. When was the last time you saw train tracks. When was the last time you saw a train.
All the fire pits at the beach are occupied. Families are gathered around, sitting on beached logs and rocks. They sit for hours, their smiles large and eyes wrinkled with mirth at the corners. The fire has long since gone out. They sit, eyes glazed over, staring and holding their hand over the cold, ashed earth.
You pick up rocks at the beach. You pick up rocks with no purpose. Occasionally you spot dozens of crabs scrambling from under it. You put the rocks back.
You see your friend wearing socks and sandals. “They’re comfortable!” they say, more to themself than to you. Their eyes are dead, their smile white and empty. At least they are comfortable.
It is 65 degrees out. There is no sun, there is no breeze, there is nothing but the croaking of an infinite amount of frogs. With every breath, the noise seems to be drawing closer. You are frozen to your spot.
It is raining and you are alone on the beach. Where did everyone go. Where did the sun go.