I stared at the page.
The darkness and I were old friends, but this was a mockery. The words were screaming in my ears as unintelligible rubbish. Some language I had never studied or heard continued to echo in my mind. No real words came except that small sentence at the top of the page, “The icy hand reached for my heart…”
A few hours ago, I was excited, even elated, with ideas flying through my mind like a sickle in the wheat fields. Oh, what a harvest it would have been. I knew that this would be the story, the play, the book, that would end all books. I had seen the words fly through my mind as though they were not even mine, but they were. There they were, calling to me, and I began to write. Only the first sentence came, “”The icy hand reached for my heart…”
After I had written it, the words seemed to jump from branch to branch like some unwieldly spider monkey, reaching for me then running. I am laughing at the thought of the banana being held to me only to be snatched away as I reach for it. I know the story, I felt it, I heard it in my mind, I saw it in my minds eye, the urgency I feel is palpable. Tension is ripping at me inside and out. All I can hear or see or feel now are the words, “The icy hand reached for my heart…”
“Why, why, why,” I actually say out loud. I know this, I know this story. I knew it, I know it, I can write it like I have so many hundreds of others. The words can flow from me like water from a fountain, no, like water from a waterfall. I know this, I know it will be fine, I know the words will come and I begin to type. Crazed with the passion of feeling the words flow I begin to type the story. Words fill my screen and I am feeling good again. The feeling is short-lived as I begin to read my words and find nonsense. Anger fills me as I backspace over all I had just typed and still the few words remained, chanting to me with near insane gibberish, “The icy hand reached for my heart…”
I took a deep breath, the anxious fervor was calling to me, I knew not how it knew my name, but I felt it there, calling, laughing, even giggling. The silence I so adored was there as well. The simmering words bathed me in their cold embrace as I tried so hard to reach beyond the edge of reason, the edge of my feelings, the edge of that thing inside writers that pushes out the creative talents that so many cannot begin to fathom. Still I was alone with the words that sat on the screen, “The icy hand reached for my heart…”
I was alone, I felt alone, I could not break this bond that was so strong over me, what was it? Why was I vexed so thoroughly? Why was this massively wonderful mystery of a story before my eyes but unable to talk or call to me. Why was I being punished? I felt my anger well up to the extreme levels near madness. “I am done!”, I screamed knowing no one could hear my voice, “Just take it”. I sighed, closed my eyes and as the darkness closed in I heard the voice whisper, “The icy hand reached for my heart…”
“Max, the coroner wants to see you, something about that writer thing,” the suited patrolman said.
“Sure,” Max replied chomping on the edge of a two day old donut. Coffee in hand he walked the stairs down three floors to the basement. The lights seemed dimmer here even though they were the same on every floor. Max had been here more times than he could easily count, still, it was a necessity of the job. The stainless steel door rolled open as he pushed on it. The hinges were silent as a quiet night in the snow.
“What’s up?” Max asked the ashen faced bald man hovering over yet another body. “That the guy? Smirkens?”
“The writer, yes,” Stan Herks replied. Stan was one of those men who was timeless. No way to tell how old they were. Stan could have been 20 or 70, it just was one of those things.
“Yeah, so, open and shut case,” Max laughed as he took another bite of his stale donut. “What did you need?”
“Well,” Stan began, “It sure isn’t as open and shut as I thought. This was routine. You know we were not sure of a cause of death. He was just dead. A man in his shape. Its like in his books, you know he wrote mostly mysteries and thrillers? The detectives and sleuths are never sure why the victim would have died.” Stan paused, “I was stumped. After all he is 42, a little overweight but no family history, he should sit up right now and walk away. At least I thought that until I looked closer.”
“OK, so, I got too many cases and Halloween is coming up, why are you making it harder than it should be?”
“Look at this,” Stan said removing the carefully cut breastplate from the mans chest. Inside there were lungs and the outline of other organs. They surrounded a gaping hole.
“What is this? I can see there’s something missing?” Max said as he looked on, “Is this a joke or something?”
“No, no joke. His heart is missing. Stranger yet there was no blood. It looks like every connection to his heart was frozen shut as it was removed, but he had no scar. Not even a mark. There was nothing when I opened him up, his heart was just gone.”
Max turned a little ashen, “Like it was frozen you said?”
“Yeah, I have never seen anything like this,” Max was shaking a little. He walked to the wall phone, hit speaker and a button to the side.
“Carson here,” came the voice.
“Yeah, Jim, Uh, what was it that was on that writer guys computer. You know, it had some words on it when we found him.”
“Really?” Carson asked.
“Yeah,” Max said, “Can you look it up, I just need to know.”
“Don’t have to,” Carson replied, “Was the creepiest thing I ever read. It said The icy hand reached for my heart….”