I'm All Ears - Chapter 1

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I'm All Ears

by Strange, The

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Short Story - From an interesting view of a blind, mute's daily life in the subway. Only today, is different.

"And I was there, bleeding, leaning against the wall, of the subway station."

I still smell the blood, the gun powder. Even though they took my sight, and my voice, I can still accurately depict every moment of those days. I've seen things I hope nobody ever has to. Women and children, tortured. Barbed wire strung between their legs. Fingers and toes cut off. Have you ever seen a man have his own eyes carved out, and been forced to eat them? I have.

You learn to lean on your ears more than anything, when your other senses have betrayed you, fled from you in fear, cowards. The slight grinding noise of the rails was present, moving farther and farther up the spectrum, I could hear it's echo. The flickering of the lights got more intense as the train engaged. I could hear their buzzes. Passengers seemed to flood toward the border of the platform like a school of fish. People-fish. So unaware of the world around them, to stuck in their own minds to realize that there are people that suffer from right beneath them.

"Thank you." I nod my head as the change hit the bottom of my empty bottle. No real words come out, mainly due to the fact that, my vocal cords had been removed, non-surgically. Really, I'm not even sure if they had dropped change in, or taken some out, but I didn't really care, or have the energy to reach down off my hardly solid home - a wooden bench desperately in need of repair. What could an old, blind, mute do with money any ways? I hate myself, what I am.

Several minutes had passed, fish had entered the stream, and were on their way to the coral beds of corporation. Economy, dreadful word, one that changes lives in an instant; fueling our hatred and our passion. The rainbow of sound has dimmed, to the coughing of the homeless man huddled in the corner, and the sipping of his rum. Often I wondered if he has chosen this fate, like I have chosen mine. Often I wondered if they forget about him, like they forgot about me, a lot changed because of what we did, a lot.

Voices. At first I think I am going crazy, I pray I am going crazy, then It'd be done, and I wouldn't have to deal with this shit any more. But no, I am perfectly sane. I can hear them skipping a long the tracks, careless evil. It was a party of no more than six men strong, no, a young lady's voice. It was only five men strong, approaching towards the platform. They do this every Friday. They run around the tunnels like rats, getting into everything, then they find some poor person to pick on. After that they usually find a nice, desolate corner to smoke up in, then proceed to be louder. You have to be gentle with these ears.

They jump out and climb up on the platform, one by one. Calling and yelling their random comments. They need more security down here. Then again, most people favor the idea that the homeless, the weak, are insignificant, that we might as well not be living. I don't. Can you really put a price on life itself? A price on something that you don't even understand?

The lady youth and one of the males in the group proceeded to grope and kiss as they walked away from the main group, while the other four maintain a constant pace towards the homeless man, sipping, lonely in the corner. They practice their strong voices and weak vocabulary on him, spitting out words that made remote sense. I ignore them for the first couple minutes. Their comments are becoming more and more agressive. I'm not sure if I should interfere or not. Then again, what could I do? Think at them?

I can hear the bum's mumbling and waving precisely. But soon, they became crys, and screams. The shattering of manufactured glass. Flesh. These sounds, accurately depict memories in my head. Being part crazy, wasn't helping at all either. I flinch and jolted as the intense images are forced into my head. I inch up, on my broken body. I start to March over to them, thinking. But once you've seen the cruelty, the brutality of choice, you think on a much different scale of reason and belief, of understanding, action. So I began my crusade, my blind, mute, crusade, "Where am I going?"

"Hey, look at this dude! He's about to walk into the fucking wall," one laughed, his voice was deep. I stopped walking, for fear that I actually was going to walk into the wall. The teenagers are now dancing around me, but they have left the bum alone. I'm not sure what I was doing, or how I was going to get out of this situation. I was sure it was going to end badly, for me. "What's your name, eh?" the deep voice poked at me. "C'mon, what's your name guy?" Again, with the poking.

I start to wander around, unsure of where I was actually heading, until I bump into a clothed object. I wasn't really scared of what, or whom I ran into, just glad I hadn't walked off the edge of the platform. "What the fuck, get off me!" The deep voice shouted as it pushed me to the ground, I could hear my body breaking inside. It was a different kind of sound, the kind you get from clicking your teeth together inside your mouth, the kind only you can hear. That only you can feel.

"This guy has to be nuts or something." I initiated my own motion of starting to stand. "Hey, you gonna talk, blindy?" At first I wondered how they knew I was blind, then reminded myself that I had a blindfold over my eyes, and that I was an idiot. "Hello? Anybody there?" They started to assume with their tone that I was some kind of aimless vessel, with no real conscience, that I just walked into walls on occasion. Then the shoves began again. And the laughter. My tolerance was weakening.

The lady's charming voice. "Hey, leave him alone, c'mon." She cared, not for me, but she respected the serenity of peace. "Shut up!" It wasn't the deep voice this time, it was the sound that bonded itself the lady. A strike, and a girl's cry, she had been hit, and their bond had been broken.

The final shove. I actually summed up the anger inside of me, seemingly channeling it to my fist. I didn't want to, but I did. I swung, at nothing in particular. It just so happened, that the once bonded voice's head was in the way. A rush of pain surged through my knuckles, and clearly through his jaw by the sound of his screams. "What the fuck, what the hell, I'm gonna fuckng kill you!" The footsteps tried to comfort him, but the he forced them away. Then a sound, that'll I'll take with me for my remaining years. My eyes had given me images to haunt my mind, and my voice had given my an opinion, for others to hate. Now my ears, give me a single sound, of anger, and silver. The sweeping cut of the air, as a thin piece of metal was sprung from its stainless cage. A scream of anger, and a thrust into my body.

I felt my life flow out of me. I could see it. Followed by an echo. At first I didn't understand, but as the lights started to flicker, and the silent grinding began, I started to notice. A train was coming. Out of random thought, almost as an act of superiority itself, I gave a dying forward push to the origin of the blade that was still inside of me. It slid out, and a thud farther down then where I was standing. I collapsed from the wound.

"Holy shit, there's a fucking train! Get off the tracks!" Footsteps scurried around me. Even the young ladies voice was screaming out to save him. I never understood people like that. You think you care about someone so much, that even after they hit you, beat you, you still go back to them. People are stupid.

The train had arrived. So had panic. The young lady cried out her callings of denial. The captain of the train hastily sped out of the train doors. "What's wrong, what's wrong?" He was extremely concerned, and disoriented.

"He's dead..." She cried. Then I had realized what I had done. I killed him. It was sick, I almost had convinced myself the train had killed him for a moment. I had fallen against a supporting pillar on the platform. "Who's dead?" the captain asked. I could almost hear her pointing, as her tears crashed against the tiled floor. "Dear lord.." The captain began to gag and vomit everywhere, I assumed he had just seen my artwork. It's funny how he failed to notice the beaten homeless man, and the bleeding hero the entire time. People only seem to care for, what society has labeled, "significant."

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