The Fallowing – Interlude III, Part II
by Steppen Sawicki
Novel: Occult Adventure
The train sped along between the towers, people milling about beneath its tracks and holding platforms. Atsel was wearing a twilight blue trenchcoat now, over a wool sweater and black jeans. It was not unlike Amnon’s outfit, since he had been the one to pick it out. But Atsel hadn’t noticed the gripping cold and the piles of snow he tripped over in his new boots.
The watch had been stopped 500 years ago. Cars hadn’t been invented yet. He had been trapped in slow motion nigh stopped, most of that time spent in Cain’s apartments, often covered in sheets or carted around in boxes like just another statue. Watching the world flash by too fast to comprehend.
Now he was peering out the window of a train. He shrieked as it pulled away from the station and he was caught off balance. The other passengers – a middle aged well-to-do couple and a sleepy not so well-to-do man glanced up before grumbling deep in their minds about drunks.
“Oh please,” droned Amnon. “It’s the same damned thing as a horse carriage. Only taller and faster. You should have seen the ones in New York. Underground, the whole thing.”
“But I saw no horses at the station,” Atsel said. They were speaking Aramaic, giving the couple the chance to discuss those damned foreigners again. “Is something pushing it?”
Amnon rolled his eyes. “I didn’t schedule any time for teaching mechanics. This,” he stretched his arms out, “is your lesson in how the world has moved on. Get used to it, quick. As in now. I don’t want you getting stupid on me later.”
The train was going faster now, and as the buildings flew past Atsel was reminded of how everything flew past him for 500 years. He shrank away from the window and screwed his eyes shut.
“Open your damned eyes and look. Otherwise what are we doing here.”
Atsel opened his eyes, slowly, but didn’t return to the window. The view made him sick. He tottered on his feet.
“I don’t know,” he said tonelessly, as if reading from script. His voice sounded far away to him. “What are we doing here?”
“We’re continuing from where we left off. In particular, from where you left off. Or has your time imprisoned reformed you?”
“Not at all,” Atsel growled through clenched teeth. “I still desire to kill every one of you. If not more now than ever.”
“See how you separate yourself from us.”
“I never said I didn’t include myself in the group.”
“It interests me not how you end the spree. I only have one request, one target, and then you can do whatsoever you want.”
Atsel looked at him through eyes narrowed in anger and hatred, his sickness at the view out the window forgotten. “And why would I do as you ask?”
Amnon leaned forward, that easy smile still on his lips. “For revenge, of course.”
The train took a curve, and Atsel was jolted to the side. He swung his arms to regain balance and grabbed desperately at the overhanging hand holds. He glanced wide-eyed back at the window. The buildings flew by.
“You know,” Amnon continued, “who has held your watch all this time. Demanded to hold it, he did.”
Atsel shook his head and, grimacing, stormed to the window. He clapped his hands against it and forced himself to stay there with his eyes open and taking in the towers and streets and people and other things the people rode that he didn’t understand.
“I can’t kill Sam,” he said. “No one can.”
Amnon laughed, quietly, as if he were attempting to explain something to a child who just wouldn’t understand. “Oh how times have changed.”