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|The Exit (standard:non fiction, 622 words)|
|Author: Lady MacKenzie||Added: Jan 27 2001||Views/Reads: 2024/1||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|Love: falling into it, losing, and picking yourself back up only to jump into it all over again.|
The Exit 1/26/2001 The camera flashed just as the man put up a “wall,” bared his teeth, and pushed forth a vague smile. He was surrounded by hundreds of people, young and old, milling around him like ducks in a pond. He held a tube close to his side, seemingly protecting it from any harm. Inside the tube was a recently autographed picture of the actor who played Darth Maul in the hit movie "Star Wars". The air outside the building had a brisk and bitter chill to it. Chicago almost always had that blustery cold feel about it, even in the springtime. There was something eerie about the way the wind hit people's faces as they walked the streets on a dark Chicago eve. All it took was to be outside for a couple of minutes. Then, after entering a heat-infested establishment, everyone's cheeks would bleed wind-chapped red blotches. "Are you ready to go?" Jared shouted to Dale over the hundreds of squealing Star Wars addicts. Dale, still squinting his eyes to recover from the camera's flash, quietly said "Sure," and sauntered behind Jared still clutching his tube as if he were holding on for dear life. As the two plowed their way through groups of teenagers, singles, couples, and older fans, the doors seemed farther away than ever. In Dale's mind, all he could think of was getting home, crawling into a warm bed, and falling asleep. He could care less if he woke up the next morning. I mean, it was just his life. Still, they trudged forth through more crowds...crowds that seemed never-ending...crowds that seemed as if they were purposely stopping them from getting anywhere. Both men seemed almost lost; however, Dale seemed to have completely spun off into his own world somewhere in the deep, dark void. Jared's eyes darted aimlessly about, searching for a closer exit. Dale’s; however, looked only down, watching Jared's feet plod onward. Left, then right. Left again, then right. It seemed a never-ending game; something that, to Dale, had nothing to do with getting out of Chicago, but had more to do with getting out of that which was his life. So many times in the past, Dale searched to find someone, the other half of his soul, to complete him. Over and over again, he failed. In his heart, this was what he felt, and so on that dark night in Chicago, him and his best friend Jared had went to an autograph signing. Little did Jared know that deep within his friend was a longing to get away from everything he knew. This was the best friend that Jared had known all throughout high school. The friend from band class. The friend to which he had confided. The friend that was secretly dying inside. No clues on Dale's exterior gave anyone any idea about the feelings he kept locked up inside. Everyday he would get up, go to school or work, and put on a happy face for the world. Never would anyone guess what was really going on inside. He was afraid of getting hurt...afraid of giving his heart fully to another only to have it ripped out and stomped on. Still, Jared and Dale kept pushing through the crowds. Dale's mind further entrenched itself in its loss, trying to push away the hurt, but clearly only wallowing in it, unable to break free. *Months later* Visually imagining being back in the building in Chicago, Dale's eyes lifted. He was no longer staring at the heels of Jared's shoes, seemingly wandering circles looking for an exit. Instead, now he held his head high. His eyes seemed brighter. And with a clear path, a few feet away, was the exit. Tweet
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