Whiplash

He didn’t know what to write. He would’ve thought writing his suicide note would be easy-but it wasn’t. It wasn’t possible that you could justify killing yourself in just half a page.


The muted yellow light in his room gave it a sterile atmosphere, like his room had been an operating theater earlier, where hundreds of people had died. As he looked around his small and sparsely furnished room, he wondered why he paid as much rent as he did. The only good thing about it was the view he got from his window. He could see the whole city from there and it allowed him to feel as if he was a part of it, an important cog in a perpetually moving machine. Or at least it used to. Eventually he had gotten tired by the false sense of connection that he felt with millions of other strangers in the city as lonely as him. Still, he had to admit, as he sat there at his table and lit his cigarette next to the window, that the view was good. It allowed him to feel ok with the fact that he was being ripped off by his landlord.

He was sure his parents would read the note, disregard it and blame his death on themselves. That’s what any parent would do. The only way you could justify not taking the blame for your child’s suicide was if your child’s name was Adolf Hitler.

He pondered what to do. He had been so excited that he would be committing suicide. But all he felt now was a void. There he was, sitting alone in his room, about to kill himself at 32 years of age, and he did not feel anything. For the past 3 hours it had become more of a chore than a liberating experience. But he had to get on with it.

He signed his note and read it again to make sure he hadn’t made any spelling or grammatical mistakes. He put down the note finally and closed his eyes, glad that the end was near.

When he opened his eyes, he saw himself. He saw himself sitting in front of himself.

 

There was somebody who looked exactly like him and was dressed exactly like him sitting in front of him, but he was considerably older. Possibly, twice his age.

“WHAT THE FUCK!” was his first response.

The Carl Graham sitting in front of him had done nothing but smile since his surprise appearance. He looked smug and particularly pleased with himself. Carl realized now why a lot of people thought he was a jackass. At that moment, he didn’t blame them.

“Well, now that the initial shock is gone, let’s get down to business” said Carl 2.0

“What business? Who are you? What the-?” stuttered Carl.

“Now listen carefully here, I’m not going to repeat myself. I am you from the future. I have come here to stop you from killing yourself. Later on in your life, you play an important role in the invention of time travel so you cannot die right now. And since I am you from the future, if you kill yourself, I will cease to exist and I’d rather I exist than I don’t.”

“What do you mean cease to exist? Will you die?”

“I cannot speak from personal experience, but apparently it will be as if I never existed. That’s all I know. And I’m not too eager to find out what ‘cease to exist’ means.”

“What if I want to kill myself? You can’t force me to live.”

“I’m not here to force you to live. I am here to make sure that you don’t kill yourself. Big difference. This loop has been carried out many times. I was saved by my future version, he was saved by his future version and so on and so forth. Hopefully you go on and save your younger self from killing himself. You see-”

BAM

Carl 2.0 was in shock. He had been shot. By his younger self. Of all the ways to die for fuck’s sake.

“You’re too boring, just like me. The only difference between you and me is that I don’t have to beg others to keep myself alive. You see-”

BAM

Now it was Carl 1.0’s turn to be in disbelief. His older self had taken out a gun from his jacket while he had been busy ranting and shot him. He had been shot. By his older self who had come from the future to save him. Of all the ways to die for fuck’s sake.

But as his consciousness slowly slipped away, he felt a question forming at the back of his mind- if he was important for the invention of time travel, who had come to save him the first time, before time travel had been invented? Who had started the loop?

 

Krjvy woke up. Something had disturbed him. It took him some time to find out what was disturbing him. It was those fucking humans again. He swore to himself that this was the last time he would get involved in their shit. He was a watcher but these humans made him intervene too much.

He was too old. When you were immortal, time was your biggest enemy. Therefore he preferred to sleep most of the time. Every time waking up became harder. He cursed himself for his predicament. The first time he had come across humans, he had revealed themselves to them. He shouldn’t have meddled at all. But he had been too curious, too naive- now he had been exiled by the other Celestial’s and was forced to correct the human’s embarrassing failings.

He tried to see what had happened. Finally he saw it- the time travel invention loop had gone awry. Thankfully correcting that didn’t take much- he would just rewind time and let the events play out again. He would have to keep doing this until the correct sequence of events was not achieved. It was a thankless task but somebody had to do it. Some day they would thank him. Till then he hoped they would just leave him alone.

 

 

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