The Last Step

It was a cold day. 
Since it was only 6 in the morning, it was still dark outside. 
Silence all around him as he walked out of the front door, into the cold Autumn air.
Most people were still asleep.
Most people.
He took the bus to the station. His usual routine. The same people as every other day got on the bus as well.
He was listening to his iPod, like every other day.
It all seemed so familiar, so normal.
When he reached the station, the song ‘how to save a life’ by the Fray was playing. He put it on repeat. 
Slowly he walked to his platform. Platform 4.
He waited. The song still playing. The lyrics forming an image in his head.
“The train to Ghent-Saint-Peter’s of 6.52 a.m. will soon arrive at track 4”, a voice gently said through speakers.
He lifted his head and looked at the end of the tracks, where the train would soon become visible.
A light appeared, it was like a light at the end of a dark tunnel. Sudden, intense. 
He smiled, as he felt the light shining on his face, more and more brightly by the second.
The train was only a few meters away now.
He took a few steps forward, stood waiting for a second and then jumped.
As he was flying in the air, he could hear the noise the train was making. The honking of the horn. But it was too late now. Useless.
He could see his life flash before his eyes. His happy childhood with loving parents, the day they were taken away from him in a terrible car accident. How he grew up with his aunt and uncle, who had tried their best to make his life as pleasant as possible, but they were never able to fill up the hole that was in his heart, ever since the day his parents died.
How he grew up to become a fine man, even though he was tortured inside. 
The day he had met his wife flashed before his eyes. He smiled. She was the most beautiful girl he’d ever seen, and she had rejected him a few times, but eventually she agreed to become his girl. He loved her so much. Three years later they married. He was 23, she was only 21, but they were madly in love.
Two years later, she gave him a beautiful son, the dream of every father. He couldn’t have been more proud of her.
A year later, their son died.
Apparently he was born with a very weak heart, and didn’t have a long time to live from the start.
It broke their heart. His wife cried all the time, talked to her friends, became very religious, … he, on the other hand, choose to find his consolation in whisky, vodka, scotch, … 
His wife, religious as she had become, saw the dead of their baby boy as a punishment for sins that they had done.
And with a man with a drinking problem, she was committing an even bigger sin.
So it wasn’t long before she left him. Alone with all his misery. While she herself, had found comfort in the arms of an other man. A man she had met in church.
Friends couldn’t bear his whining and depressed talking anymore. Even his family couldn’t stand being around him anymore.
So he was left completely alone.
Since he had a drinking problem, he lost his job.
No more money.
It was not long before the bailiff came to take all of his possessions. 
Tonight, he would get kicked out of his house.
All of this flashed through his mind as he was floating in the air, the lights of the train coming closer.
He had been thinking about doing this for a couple of weeks now. Just never had the courage.
But now, everything would be fine. Everything would be alright.
Everything would be – …


The train hit him hard. His body got crushed under the enormous weight.
Bystanders could hear the screeching of the brakes as the train slowed down, and eventually stopped.
People rushed up to see what had happened, but all they saw was a broken body, lying on the tracks of platform 4.
It was impossible to make out what body parts were still complete.
All they could see was a smile on the face, with blood smudged around it.
A smile, as the person lying there, broken, gone, had finally found what he was looking for.
What he had lost.
Smiling, as if he was finally at peace.


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