Have you noticed that even on the darkest night you can still see something in all the blackness? You know, vague shadows, deeper tones of grey contrasting with the black, or is it just my mind?
I was dead tired. What an appropriate phrase to use. However despite my need to have my eyes closed there was also that need to have them open too. I like to know what’s going on. I am always aware, on the look out in the darkness. I am not your usual old fogey, all befuddled with age. Why can’t I give in, let go, throw in the towel?
No, I am always alert; waiting. In all those unfathomable shadows near to pitch black as one could imagine, I feel as if I am being watched. Now I am an old man, I have seen everything, certainly everything I need to see. Well almost everything and what I haven’t seen I can imagine. As I did just then.
“I know you are there. You don’t frighten me.” Was that really me saying that or was that bravado on my part in the likely face of an intruder, after God knows what. What have I got to steal, except my memories perhaps? And what of those, who would want them? I haven’t made up my mind whether they are valuable or not. Can you sell a heap of rubbish?
There was a slight chuckle in the darkest corner of the room, or where I thought the corner was. “I was told you would be difficult”. A voice whispered. “Don’t worry I haven’t come for you, I am just sizing you up”.
“I thought that is what undertakers do.” I replied. “So you are the advance party are you?” I tried to discern a shape, a movement in the Stygian gloom.
This time he laughed outright.
“Have you thought that your life was better than you thought it was?" Did he say that or did I? If he said it I would have to agree with him. But if I said it I would argue with myself and say I hated every time that I made a mistake; every opportunity I missed; every time I never said I love you to whoever I loved at that time and was too vain to bare my soul, to show my true self.
“No, you can stay a little while longer” he said, "You still have a lot of work to do."
And so I had.
Yes, the room was certainly empty now, except for me that is. I didn’t need eyes to know that.