Running Late

“You are going to be late.”

“I’m not going to be late.”

“You know the clock is two minutes slow, right?”

“It’s…  Of course I knew that.”

“Why are you bothering with that outfit?  What was wrong with what you were wearing?”

“It’s tradition.”

“I think it’s even more traditional to be on time.”

“Listen, cat.  What do you know about it?  You sleep all day.”

*     *     *

Nathan saw the car headed towards him too late to get out of the way.  The force of it knocked him several feet before he landed heavily on the pavement.  The only thought running through his mind was “I’m dead” repeated over and over.

But he wasn’t.  He stood up, stunned, but apparently unharmed.  That was impossible, though.  He knew the blow from the car would have killed him.  It certainly should have.  So how was he still breathing?

People around him seemed just as confused, but they expressed relief that he was alright.  The driver had even rushed over to make sure he wasn’t dead.  It appeared to be a miracle.

“Damn it.  That stupid cat is never going to let me live this down.”

Nathan turned around to find the owner of the voice.  There was no doubt it had come from the tall figure in the hooded, black robe.  No one else in the crowd even noticed it.

“Who are you?”

The crowd turned a collective puzzled look in the direction of the space he was addressing.

“I’m sorry I’m late.  Thought I had time to get here.”

“But I’m not dead, see?  So there’s no need for you.”

The crowd backed up several spaces.  Maybe he had hit his head and was hallucinating.

“Ah.  That’s where you’re wrong.  You died.  But since I wasn’t here to sever the connection, your soul is still dragging your body around.”

“So I’m really dead?”

“Yes.  I can cut you free.  Do you want to lay down first?”

“And if I don’t want you to?”

“You don’t get a choice, I’m afraid.  I can finish this with or without your cooperation.”

Nathan turned and ran from the robed figure.

“Dammit.  Why do they always run?  I’m not wearing the right shoes for this.”

But it did not take long before he caught Nathan and severed his soul.  Nathan went quietly after that.

The coroner suggested that a rush of adrenaline had kept him alive for a few minutes before the extensive damage shut everything down.  While very unlikely, there had been a few cases before.

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