Sunday, April 8, 2007

Clara and Charlie, Episode 1

"I'm dropping Astronomy." Michelle said, then disappeared. She didn't make a popping sound, there was no sparkle of lights. One moment she was there, the next she wasn't, like a light being turned off. Jibes evaporated from Clara's mind as she watched Michelle's hollow jeans and Wheaton sweater, crumple over suddenly empty shoes. She jumped when a metal-bending crash came in through the open window. A Cheshire smile grew over her lips. She knew what had just happened. She knew exactly what had happened. Clara pressed her eyes shut in ecstasy, waiting for the light.

And she waited. After half a minute she became aware of her head and chest throbbing with double pulse beats. Her stomach started constricting in on itself. Where was Jesus? She broke her pose and sprinted out into the hallway, Michelle's sweater traveling with her, tangled around her left Converse. A scatter of college wear lay in a heap outside Maria's door. Silence swallowed her whole in one massive gulp. They were gone. She was not. Jesus had gathered the righteous, He had assembled the flocks at his side, he had brought in the faithful. Michelle was raptured, Maria was raptured. Clara clutched the guilty flesh of her painfully solid wrists. Could God be late for her? Was he still coming? She fell to her knees, blood red fingernails seized in a desperate claw of prayer.

"Hello?" She screamed. Nobody answered. "Hello?" Nothing. Was anybody else here at all? It didn't matter, she knew it as soon as she thought it. There was no point looking. She wasn't worthy, she was abandoned. She knelt in place until she couldn't feel her knees anymore. Between the carpet and ceiling tiles, her sobs didn't so much as echo.

1 comment:

Nenya said...

Chilling. And would be more effective even to the target audience (who believe in the rapture) than what LH&J actually wrote. *shivers*