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At rainbows end (standard:horror, 1022 words)
Author: Lev821Added: Oct 21 2007Views/Reads: 1873/0Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
Sometimes it is best not to discover what's at the end of the rainbow.
 



He absolutely hated meetings. They never seemed to have much point to
them, but each week he would find himself in two or three which always 
descended into a beverage sampling, back slapping jamboree, as too many 
of his colleagues for his liking spent most of their time on golf 
courses and in restaurants rather than actually doing any work. T hey 
earned more money than they could spend. For Philip Drake, a public 
sector accountant for a large housing association, these meetings were 
unnecessary because usually nothing ever resulted from them, but still, 
he was not in a high enough position to refuse to attend, but he didn't 
mind the odd jaunt or indulgence in certain meetings, especially with 
people he knew. He was guilty of that, guilty of enjoying it sometimes, 
but there was work to be done. The initial purpose of the meetings was 
to discuss the matters at hand, but most of the time, no-one felt like 
discussing them, but did so reluctantly. Philip, it seemed, was 
becoming a rare commodity within his business circles. He was work 
focused, and when the job was done, he could relax. Yet, nothing was 
ever completed, just added to and modified, which meant more meetings, 
and more money spent. Sometimes he thought of giving it all up, but in 
the end, his conscience would remind him that the perks of the job 
weren't that bad after all. Despite his colleague's love of excess, 
together with their aversion to work, he couldn't give it up. 

Today there was a meeting in one of the cities branches with several
external auditors to discuss cash flow and expenditure, and he was 
late. In his brand new BMW Coupe, he sped along a country lane, knowing 
that it was a shortcut that would take him to the outskirts of the 
city. From there, it was only a ten minute drive to the meeting, but he 
still had around twenty minutes of driving through countryside for the 
meeting that started in fifteen minutes, so he floored the accelerator, 
not really sure why he was nervous about being late. No-one would 
probably miss him. He had, however, set his own standards high, and it 
would not look good to the auditors to be late. He had thought of 
phoning in to say that he couldn't make it, but couldn't think of a 
good enough excuse to use. He had never used an excuse before, and was 
not about to start doing so. 

Philip was 48 years old, wore white and cream suits, and sported a white
beard of around one inch in length. He had receding hair and wore a 
choker with a small polished seashell. He also sported that most 
abhorrent thing that all information regarding how to go about a job 
interview warned against. A tattoo. A tattoo that could not be covered 
except partially by sunglasses, but they were not practical. 
Twenty-eight years ago he had a tear, tattooed to the side of his right 
eye, and age had not worn it well. It was slightly blurred, and a shade 
lighter than what it used to be, but it was still distinctively a tear. 
Two years after it had been etched, he had regretted it. It was one of 
those moments where it seemed like a good idea at the time, as he was 
in a ‘rocker' phase, wearing leather jackets and sporting long hair. 
However, college and education took over, and he literally got down to 
business, cut his hair, hung up his jacket, sold his motorbike, and 
even a few years afterwards would look at photographs of himself in all 
his gear, sometimes holding a guitar, sometimes with a cannabis 
cigarette, and he would shake his head in embarrassment. Did I really 
look like that? he would say. What was I thinking? He had thought of 
getting the tattoo removed, but abhorred the idea of a laser going 
anywhere near his eye, so it stayed, and it was only his credentials 
and the fact that he knew somebody in the business, that made people 
overlook it. They had found their prejudices to be wrong, and that 
appearances are not always an instant judge of character. 

As he drove, the windscreen became speckled with fine rain, but it
wasn't enough to use the wiper. Further up ahead, he saw a rainbow 
arching into the clouds, and wished he could just pull up and relax in 
the serenity, instead of speeding along with a worried mind. After a 
few moments the road curved around to the left and he found himself 
surrounded by a kaleidoscopic array of colour. He realised that this 
was the rainbow's end. It exists, he thought, it actually exists. He 
slowed down, and looked around. The pot of gold's been nicked, he 
thought. Typical. He then realised the car was no longer driving on the 
road, and that he was in fact, going up. The car, as did he, slowly 
vaporised as they travelled up the rainbow. 

Then suddenly he was back driving again, as he was, towards the city. He
frowned. Not really sure what happened. He was still speeding along the 
curved road when he realised that something was wrong. He was on the 
passenger side of the car, and he discovered he was left handed. The 
steering wheel was in front, as normal as it would be, and he also 
realised that the road was now curving to the right. He felt as though 
he was driving in the opposite direction. Everything appeared reversed. 
A car emerged from around the corner ahead of him, a familiar looking 
car, with a familiar looking driver. As he stared in shock at himself, 
he swerved to the right to avoid a collision, but his other self, in 
the mirrored, parallel world, did the same, swerving to left. The 
vehicles smashed into each other, metal crushing into metal, glass 
smashing into glass. Both tears beside Phillip's eyes struck each 
other, and flesh crushed into flesh. Like a tear, or rain drop, both 
cars, and both Philip's evaporated, along with the rainbow.


   


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