Comfort Zone By D.I. Jolly
The first thing he thought of as the fuselage split and he was sucked out of his chair into the night sky was that he didn’t want to go outside, because he was scared of the dark and that he’d paid a lot of money to have a comfortable seat on the plane. An irrational thought and an irrational fear, his mind trying to comfort and distract him from the truth of his situation. His muscles all tensed and he opened his mouth to scream, but the rushing air caught the sound in his throat and he stifled. Then images started to play in his mind, so vividly that he almost lost sight of the ground rushing up to meet him. As if dreaming his mind hopped from idea to idea, memory to memory, to the faces of people he’d known. For an instant, he settled on thinking about all the women he’d been with over his life, the ones that he’d loved, that ones he grew to hate. He thought about the times they’d spent together, the mistakes that had been made, the fights, the sex, the love and the pain. He thought about crying, then he thought about calling out for help which led him to think about his mother. If he was about to see her again and what she’d look like now. Then he thought about his father and his brothers. He wondered who would get the news first, who would have to deliver it to the others. How would they respond? Would they cry, or shout, or break things. His mind then jumped to thoughts of his friends, and their reactions, and then back to his ex-lovers. How would any of them, or all of them respond? Would they all find out eventually? And how? Would his friends know that he was on this flight? Would his favourite barman just think that he’d started drinking in another bar? His thoughts lingered on people, on their feelings towards him and how they might react to what was happening to him in those moments, what was about to happen to him in another few moments. Then all at once, those thoughts vanished and he thought about how he felt, and how he wanted to react to his life, and loves and friends and family. As the ground came ever closer, he found himself feeling afraid, but not of the ground, of what happened afterwards. If anything. He knew he was about to find out, but was scared of that knowledge. Then as the tops of trees came within touching distance and the light of his life was about to go out, he wondered if he’d miss the people he loved, or would they all be there waiting for him on the other side. At last, his muscles relaxed and his throat unlocked but he didn’t scream, he just breathed one last breath and thought.