Growing up was interesting. Everyone else had these incredibly sweet nothings to look at, to look forward to. Mine was nothing like that. John, my best friend from middle school, his arm read “you’ve made my life complete, and there is nothing I would trade in this world to not have you. Thank you John, I’ll always love you.” It was easy to know what that meant, it meant that he was going to live a happy life eventually, no matter what he did. When it comes down to it that’s what these scars in the shape of letters were. The last words from your true love. A prediction of your future. When it comes down to it we all want to know we’ll be happy, right?
Some people show their words off, some hide them. People believe that long sleeve shirts were invented for that purpose. I myself could care less. I like to believe that my future isn’t set in stone, or skin if you will. Each day I constantly go against what the normal individual would do, take bigger risks, fight what some call destiny, in the hopes that I may conquer. I do this because when it comes down to it what’s the point of living if you don’t feel alive?
Thats likely enough information for you to get the gist of my story and who I am. Don’t think too far into it, there’s really not much. Nowadays I spend my time in what some may call a hermetic life. Most others are in the world desperately trying to connect, connect to their one. I almost don’t want to, well no I’ve decided that I am not going to. I go to work day in and day out doing everything I can to make the most of my existence. While making the most of my existence I get paid pretty well, firemen are in short supply, people are too scared to live.
One day we got the call, it was down in a school house, a middle school, a pyro in the bathroom. The few of us hurry to get our gear on and board the truck. The sirens blair and rubber turns as we barrel towards the corner of 6th and Davis street. We pull up to what looks to be nothing too bad, even though all fires are bad. Outside the school is a large group of children and adults standing in separate different smaller groups. One teacher is flagging me down waving her arms and yelling. I jog to her.
“She’s still in there with half of her class”
“Whats the room number?”
“132, first floor, near the back”
With this information we set off into the school, rushing down the hallway with almost reckless abandon. Schools were the worst, the idea that children are dying keeps anyone awake into the double digits of the morning. We climb over beams and smalls fires to reach 132. The door is pinned shut and there are small childlike sounds coming from inside. Andrews drops his shoulder and puts his 230 pound frame through the door into the class. Near the center is a group of kids in a circle, in the middle is who I assume Ms. Johnson. Debris from the building had pinned her down and punctured the lower right side of her chest. Blood was seeping slowly from the wound, which was somewhat a good sign. The children were herded and taken outside by half our team. The other half, including me stayed with Skyler.
“Now Ms. Johnson what we are about to do will likely hurt, a lot.”
“Please, it’s Skyler to you”
“Alright, Skyler, we’re going to attempt to lift this beam off of you, in doing so the piece that is inside you will come out. We will have to put pressure on it and get you out extremely quickly”
“As long as the kids are safe”
“They are. On three. One, two, three.”
Steven, Matt, Gary, and I all lifted as one. Pulling the debris off of her and to the side quickly. At this point we used a towel to plug the wound and I applied as much pressure as I could. For such a situation Ms. Johnson, Skyler I mean, was extremely calm. Maybe she was trying to help keep me calm with casual conversation. Questions. Such as where are you from, what do you like to do in your free time came up. We did this little conversational dance all the way to the ambulance. As the EMT’s put her in the back I told her everything was going to be alright.
“I hope so, nonetheless, I wish I met you sooner.”
Something sounded oddly familiar about those words, something poking me in the dark reaches of my mind, a place a I hand't visited in a while. I looked down at my arm.
Maybe you can’t fight destiny.