PaulWADE - PulpKult By PaulWADE - PulpKult, 5th Dec 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Short Stories

A man (Peter) is working too hard. Getting nowhere. He takes a break, but is HE broken?



A (Very) Short Story.

Peter sat at his desk, with the two computer screens illuminating reflections off his reading glasses.
He had so much to finish today, but his mind was elsewhere.
Finding moments when he could work without distraction were becoming more and more rare.
This evening time was no exception.
He stopped bashing away at his keyboard and quickly read what he had written.
Crap, he decided. Absolute rubbish.
Peter looked around the room and saw that there were jobs he had been meaning to do all week, still untouched. Even his ashtray was still full. This he usually emptied as matter of routine each morning. What on earth was the matter with him? He was becoming either lazy, or totally preoccupied by anything and nothing.
It was the book, he knew that his mind was being diverted because the story was not writing itself, as other stories he had written had done.
“Welcome to world of the writer,” he could almost hear his friends saying this as he realized he too had been bitten by the terrible blank mind syndrome.Better to call it by its proper name, writers block.
“Damn it to hell.” Peter was quickly losing his temper. “Some fresh air may help,” he decided. So he left the desk, left his office and wandered around the apartment looking for ways to both be helpful by doing the odd job around the place and to divert his oncoming irritation.

The jobs were obvious, he went back and collected his ashtray, emptied his ever growing stack of discarded notes and took them to the kitchen, where the rest of the garbage also needed taking to the recycling bins.
“Ah well, it'll get me the air I needed,” he thought. So, grabbing all the little garbage bags he stomped off to throw them all away.
The late evening air was indeed very refreshing, “bloody cold actually,” he thought. He hadn't bothered with a coat or a sweater, the bins were not very far and he lived on the ground floor in any case, so it was just a few minutes job.
“It would do him good he,” decided, to be cold for a few moments, it wouldn't do him any harm at all.
“Perhaps it would kick start my sputtering brain.”

Having dutifully put the right bag into the appropriate bin, he turned to walk back to the rear entrance of the apartments. Something caught his eye. He was looking right into his own office as he walked back.
There in the office, staring at the work-board notes, was HIMSELF?.
“This is bullshit,” he said out loud. “What the fuck?..”
He stepped forward a few more paces, while the himself in the office turned toward the desk, sitting down at the computer.
As taken aback as Peter was, he didn't panic.
He thought that perhaps he was seeing someone playing a joke on him.

Many thoughts raced through his mind; “whoever it is, is wearing exactly my clothes.”
“No;” Peter decided, “this is bull,” he stopped where he was, watching a little longer, the person, himself, was at the computer, at his desk, now typing quite quickly.
It was too far away for Peter to read what was being written, but he could see the blackness of the typed words creeping across the stark white page.

Peter then ran toward to the entrance hall of the apartments and let himself in. Running up the three or four steps, he reached his own apartment in seconds, bursting through the door as if he was raiding the place.
Without even thinking, he continued directly to his office which was at the far side of his apartment.
He burst into the room.
Empty! there was no one here, not himself, not anybody.
He looked around the room and tried to make his mind concentrate.
Had he imagined it? Well, the fact is, he must have done.
“After all, its not exactly an average occurrence,” Peter chuckled. “I really have been working too much, I should pace myself better in the future. Thinking about fantasy worlds and wild characters is obviously getting too much for me.”
Peter turned toward the window, staring out onto the courtyard, the pathway he had just been walking along; there, right there, from where he thought he had seen himself in the office, was himself.
Standing exactly where he had been standing when he saw himself in the office from outside.
As he stared, the himself from the pathway gave him a small wave, as if he was a friendly neighbour. Peter knew there was no point running out to confront this person, as when he did so, he would probably be in the office, as soon as he got outside on the pathway.
At least he expected that is what would happen.
Finally, Peter sat down in the chair at his desk, turning his back to the window and the whoever, himself, it was outside.
The idea that then struck him, was to write down what had just happened, so that there would be something, not proof exactly, but at the least, a third element to this this ever increasingly unnerving drama.
As Peter began typing and the black words marched across the page, he realized that this is what he had seen, when he had been outside, looking at himself typing on the computer from the pathway.
For the first time real fear grew inside Peter's mind. “Am I going crazy?”

“I obviously am going crazy he thought angrily. Normal people do not see themselves anywhere except in a mirror, this was not a reflection. I am looking at a person doing something entirely different to that which I am doing.”
“Assuming” he thought horrified, “that I am actually me and the person outside right now, isn't me. In which case, who then, is he and who am I?...”
His thoughts trailed off.........

Peter was still trying to rationalize the entire process.
“I must be me, because I am doing the thinking from here. Of course, so whoever it is outside, can not be me because I am doing the thinking.” For some unfathomable reason this pearl of wisdom made Peter feel better.

Without giving any of it further thought, he raced out of his office across the apartment and out of the main door, to the same pathway as he had taken before.
“Ha ha!!!” He cried, “I knew it;”
No one was there.
He had obviously just been indoors too long and the cold autumn air had momentarily mixed him up a bit. “Silly bastard. Now pull yourself together and go inside have a coffee and take the rest of the evening to relax. The wife will be home soon, her being home will make the reality return.”
Peter was already feeling better, he turned to walk back, when he reluctantly looked up toward his window, there he was, again, standing right up against the window glass, staring at HIM, with a confused horrified look on his, my face...
Not normally given to such physical weaknesses as fainting, Peter hit the path like a dropped school bag.
Everything went black.

Peter had no idea how long he was out.
He remembered all too quickly, what had made his head spin and had made him lose himself.

“Thank God.” He realized he had simply rushed outside into the cold air too quickly. It must have made him dizzy. He got to his feet, shaking his head slightly and laughed at himself for being such a girl.
“I do feel a little better.” He admitted to himself.

He looked toward his office window, he saw his wife entering the room.
He then noticed that HE was sitting in the chair, slumped over the keyboard. His wife was shaking him by the shoulder.
He could see that she was saying something to him.

He watched as he stood up from the chair.
Together, he and his wife looked out of the office window.

As he continued to watch, two men entered the office. Both he and his wife turned as they did so.
Each man took an arm and led him out of the room. His wife followed directly behind them.

Peter, ran across the lawn and barrelled into the entrance of the apartments, up the few stairs and crashed through the door into his apartment.
“Where have you been” His wife asked in a calm and casual tone.
Peter stared at her, “How long have you been home?” he asked.
“Just came in, a few moments before you came bashing through the door.”
She smiled at him, “I thought I had lost you.” She said with a grin...

Peter did not reply, he walked over to the front room and looked out of the window. He could see the street from here and there, on the other side of the road was his wife, two men and Himself being pushed into a small van.

He called out to his wife.
“What is it?” She replied from the kitchen.

No. No, no, no, no, Nnnnooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

The End Kinda!!!


Humour, Humourous Story, Losing Your Mind, Sanity

Meet the author

author avatar PaulWADE - PulpKult
Poetry, observation on a fairly long life of changes and events.
A Novel is (I hope) in the making, I shall talk about that more, later on no doubt.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
5th Dec 2012 (#)

It can possibly happen when we leave this world! Interesting story and quite gripping from beginning to end, Paul - siva

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author avatar Retired
5th Jan 2013 (#)

Thanks for the insight, success for your article

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