Author : Roi R. Czechvala, Staff Writer

“You’re dead.” She said. Her voice was ice. Her eyes held no emotion.

“So you say.” I lit a cigarette, exhaling blue smoke towards the ceiling.

“That’s illegal you know.”

I snapped the antique lighter shut. “What are they going to do? Kill me?” I barked a laugh, which startled her back to reality.

“I don’t understand,” she choked back a sob. “Why do you do this to me? I loved you, I’ve always loved you, and you only keep coming back to hurt me.”

Poor kid. I really should never have done that to her. She never deserved it. She was too good for me. But hey, I’m a prick.

Or used to be. I’m dead now. Or at least the part that used to be me is dead; the essence, the being, the divine spark, the soul if you will. Whatever you may call it, the ghost in the machine fled, and all that is left is this unfeeling automaton. The memories of Gerry Carter are still here, that’s a certainty, but I….he has moved on, leaving only a morbid, morose creature behind.

“Why are you doing this? You were my world. I gave you everything, our children, my very life to save you.”

She was beautiful. Forty five and three children later, she was still beautiful. Long dark red hair and longer legs. She always kept dinner for me. Always greeted me at the door. Whenever she discovered my indiscretions she forgave me, and asked what she did to make me stray.

She turned on me with sudden venom. “You’re dead Gerald. Why do you keep rising again to torment me? What have I done to deserve this?”

“Nothing… I don’t know…,” my voice cracked. I violate the very laws of Death just for a few minutes with her. Just to see those clear blue eyes, those auburn tresses.

“I love you I guess,” I said, shrugging like an embarrassed little school boy.

“Love me? You love me? You fucking bastard. Don’t you dare use that word with me. A corpse can’t love.” She spat in my face.

“Look, can’t I just…,”

“What you can do is end this farce. Leave me alone. No more resurrections, please. I can’t take it anymore.” Her shoulders slumped. Her voice, shrill only moments ago, was now empty and without hope.

“Is that what you really want?”

“That’s what I want,” she said, her voice flat.

She didn’t say a word as I raised the pistol and pointed it at her forehead. She stood before me defiantly, proudly. Her shoulders thrown back and her head held high.

The .45 slug made a neat round hole in her skull. I was amazed every time that there was so little blood from the wound. She crumpled straight to the floor, as if she was standing supported, and then instantly those supports had been ripped away.

As always, I stood over her wondering what I could have done differently. What I should have done to begin with. What led me to kill the only women I had ever loved. Or thought I had at any rate.

I shed not one tear as I bent to pick her up, her fragile body almost weightless in my arms. I placed her body in the Jesus tank. The rejuvenating fluids glowed ivory around her. She would be ready for resurrection in another year. The anniversary of her death. She had taken her own life rather than embarrass me with a divorce.

She was right; is right, I am a heartless, soulless individual, a ghoul.

I am dead.

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