“No! No! No! No! They can’t be dead. They can’t be.”
The hospital. My son and daughter-in-law are in ICU. The car wreck. They survived, but my grandchildren…eight year old Patrick, 2 year old Sarah…they’re dead. They’re dead.
I’ve been a failure all my life. I’ve been a failure as a husband, a father, a provider. I’ve tried to live a normal life, to keep my family safe, to keep anyone from finding out about me. But that was a mistake.
I had the power to save their lives and I let that bitch tell me I wasn’t worthy of using it.
“You can’t do that, Michael. You were born with those powers, but to use them would mean disaster for reality.”
“So I’m supposed to let some alien bitch tell me I can’t save those children? I can’t imagine living another day when they aren’t with me. Without them, I can’t breathe, I can’t think, I am nothing without them. I was a crappy Dad, but so help me God, I will not fail my son’s children.”
“If you honor time and space you must.”
“Fuck you, Raven. Fuck time and space. Fuck reality. You can’t stop me this time. I won’t let you. I’ll kill anyone who tries to hurt my grandchildren. Even you.”
“Then let the battle begin if you care more about two small human beings against all reality.”
“Without them, there is no reality.”
It was like being trapped under a tremendous weight, say a locomotive. It was like being trapped, looking down, and seeing the two most precious people in your world bleeding to death. It was like saying, if I can’t do the impossible, if I can’t push up, lift 35,000 tons of steel above my head, and free them, they’ll bleed out and it will be all my fault…all my fault.
I’ve been a failure all my life because I was afraid to succeed. I was intimidated by Raven, by her kind, I failed to use my abilities to do good.
No. Not one more time. Never again.
The weight shuddered. It began to move. It’s just a metaphor. There is no weight, but there is an effort. There is a tremendous effort. There is a battle, a battle I swear I’ll win.
They won’t die. I promise you that you won’t die. I’ll do anything to save you. I don’t care what it costs.
“But what about the world, Michael. Will you sacrifice a world to save your grandchildren?”
“I won’t have to, Raven. There’s only one sacrifice I’ll make for them.”
Michael is dying of cancer. He’s in hospice. He’s asked for the two people he most loves to come, to say their goodbyes, Eighteen year old Patrick and twelve year old Sarah.
“Grandpa, don’t leave us.”
“Believe me, Patrick, it’s not by choice.” It was a terrible lie, but I couldn’t tell them the truth, that I did choose to leave them rather than let them die.
Sarah couldn’t talk. She held on to Grandpa as tight as she could and cried and cried.
Patrick patted her back. “It’s okay, sis. It’s okay.”
“No! It’s not okay. I love my Grandpa. Don’t go! Don’t go!”
“Oh, sweetheart. I’ll never be gone. I have always loved you, and if God grants it, I will always love you, always and forever, beyond time itself.”
This was the price, and it was well worth it. They’ll live full and fruitful lives. Only I need to know that I traded my life for theirs.
I will always love you. Always.