A crowd gathered at Davenport, Iowa Train Station. Murmurs and hushes traveled through the peering heads. The attention of about a dozen pairs of eyes was caught by the argument taking place down on the train tracks. From above, the silver full moon stared down from a starless sky painted pitch black.
“Someone call the police. Please, I don’t have a cell phone.” Squeaked a skinny old lady with close-set eyes, a long beak-shaped nose and a green and white feathered hat; the latter only added to her bird-like features. But nobody paid any attention to the bird lady’s plea. The small crowd of travelers had their attention paid elsewhere.
“Quiet down lady,” a gladiator-size man barked to the women’s suggestion. The man wore size 15 work boots and seemed to have stolen the hands of an adult ape. “This is the city, crazy people are a dime a dozen!” He said.
A wave of shushes cruised through the audience of about a dozen or so people. Elbows were nudged, and shoulders were squeezed in to make room. Crowds are always a curious bunch. Immediately people began to whip out their cellphones. More than half of the onlookers had turned on the camera or camcorder. Watches were currently forgotten about, which just a minute ago had many of the owners glancing at the hands of time.
“How’d he get on the tracks over there?” a teenage girl with short pink hair asks.
“Shhhh” a Spanish woman with too much perfume on says, poking a tan finger to her mouth.
“Hopped the gate.” Someone said.
Meanwhile, about twenty feet down from the end of the waiting dock a heated argument grows louder from between the train tracks. The man screams, “What are you gonna do More? Huh? Run again? Get on that train? We almost got caught last time!”
The other man barks back, “I know… I fucking know all right!” Morrison screams at Thomas, his small stature barely reaching five feet, is shaking with nervousness and even more so with fear. Morrison lowers his voice, “We didn’t hide the body good enough man.” He looks toward the dark empty tunnel and then glances back down at Tommy’s trembling hands; he could tell Thomas was scared too. He knows he is because he knows him all to well. Morrison has known Tommy ever since the first time they “Played” with a girl… played until she had to go home... and go to bed, the painful thought cuts across his mind like a knife.
“We should have buried her,” Morrison hisses through his paper-thin lips, then, as if speaking to himself, “like I said too.”
Back up on the edge of the waiting platform, a businessman shoves his way to the front of the crowd. “Come on, come on,” he growls and taps the right toe of his Steve Maddens, “B-seven, B-seven. Let's go!” He says and keeps glancing back and forth from his gold Rolex to the tracks in anticipation of his train. His watch reads five to eight, and according to the electric display hanging behind him from the station’s ceiling, Train B-7 is set to arrive at 8:01 p.m.
From the back of the small crowd a man with a pinstripe suit on says, “What is going on down there, why’s that man yelling for? Is he arguing?”
“Because he is a dumbass.” The construction worker, fit to be in the Spartan army, cursed.
The nosey crowd listens in on the heated conversation that is taking place on the train tracks.
The bird-lady convinced a teenage girl to stop taking a video and call the police. The only other noises that can be heard over the yelling is now the blaring of sirens.
The snooping mob squishes closer to the end of the waiting station’s concrete ledge, trying to hear the commotion down below. High heels and dress shoes are well over the yellow warning paint with the bold red letters advising to STAY BACK.
From below, “You get on that train, it’s over for good! Do you get that More? You and I are both over! What I created is over. You’ll destroy me too. Don’t you get that? No, no Morrison, don’t you step on that track. We have to agree on this!” He screamed. Greenish-blue veins palpated from the side of his neck as if to emphasize what he was saying. He needed to convince Morrison to stay put when the train came.
The crowd moved in even closer trying to figure out what would happen next. The screeching sirens grew even louder as eight o’clock ticked into existence. From the distance of the dark tunnel, speeding wheels could be heard howling. Faces with an expression of puzzlement etched most of the gathering. The assembly of travelers watched the argument carry on, as it began to boil.
“Her face won’t leave my fucking head. It’s gnawing through my brain like a fucking termite!” Morrison screamed right by Tommy’s ears so loud it could be heard over the cries of the police sirens and the screeching of steel wheels.
Thomas responds, “I know what you're thinking. You think you can just jump on that train, and it will all go the fuck away! Huh! That it?” He yells and reaches for Morrison’s head. He grabs a hold of his skull and pushes his palms hard against his ears. “Listen to me More! More, I don’t want to die on the run! Not here man. Not now, Morrison. We can still get away, it doesn’t have to end dammit!”
Thomas takes a step away from the tracks.
But then Morrison takes a step closer.
Meantime, two Davenport police cruisers skid to a stop in the stations parking area. Four cops come dashing out, three males and one blonde-haired female. The heavyset one of the cop quartet wobbles over while spitting words into his radio fumbling to press the Mic button.
Back by the tracks, the crazy show is about to come to an end.
One step forward.
One step back.
Thomas continues his attempt to wheedle his partner in crime, “Don’t forget that I made you. What you are, the reason you’re alive is because of me. You can’t control me! I created you!” He shrieks as loud as his small body is capable of. Much louder than how his old man used to holler when he came home drunk or high, or—often—both.
But Morrison only shakes his head, slowly. Then turns away from Thomas. Again as if speaking to himself he says, “No, I control us now. I’m done killing, I’m done running away, it’s over. No more Thomas. No more Killing.” And with that Thomas leaves. Now it’s only Morrison waiting for his ride, the ride that would take him away.
A robotic female voice comes over the loudspeakers above. “Please step back from the yellow line. Please step back from the yellow line. Train B-7, non-stop to Rock Island Illinois.
The cop quartet makes their way up on the stage finally. They scream and yell, but Morrison isn’t listening. Train B-7 has arrived on time. Morrison thinks, no more running.
The giant, vibrant eye of the big steel machine blast through the darkness of the tunnel. “WAAANK! WAAANK! WAAANK! WAAAAAANK!” The horn roars, warning everyone to get the hell out of the way.
“He’s gonna get hit!” The girl with pink hair screams. Morrison hears this; he can hear all the chatter from the crowd above him on the stage. He hears one of the male cops commanding him to, “Step away from the tracks. Stand down sir!” A female cop is ordering him to, “Put your hands in the air! Now!” He hears, too, the warning robotic voice from above. Morrison can hear all this. But what he is concentrating on is the rattling of the steel wheels vibrating on the metal tracks. The termites will be gone soon… no more bugs… no more Thomas. Morrison thinks as he digs the tips of his toes into the stone gravel floor getting ready to jump.
The silver, steel snake shoots sparks of spittle as it puts on the brakes. But when Thomas Morrison jumps on the nose of the locomotive, Train B-7 is still coming at killing speed. Like a fly crashing into a car’s windshield, SPLAT! Bloody chunks of raw meat spray the windshield of Train B-7. Thomas’s blood is sprinkled all over the gawking crowd. Morrison’s bones and flesh explode like fireworks over the waiting platform. The businessman’s slick black shoes are now speckled red.
For Morrison, the voices of the crying girls are erased for good now. His mind is lost amongst his splattered brain. With no more Thomas, Morrison can finally be at peace. No more murders, no more running. No more hurting those innocent girls like Thomas made him do. It is over. No more.
Overhead, the moon peeks out from behind an ebony cloud, still looking, still watching as a silent witness to the pandemonium that is mankind.
The Davenport Daily
Last night at the Davenport Central Train Station a middle age man (Thomas Morrison-37) jump onto the front of a speeding Amtrak passenger train. Four Davenport city police officers that were called by one of the bystanders were at the scene when it happened. A large group of civilians witnessed what the authorities are calling a suicide. Harriett Cladzick, who was traveling to visit with her grandkids, witnessed this bizarre act, she told reporters, “That crazy man kept screaming at himself like he was having an argument. I had a young gal call the police. That man was holding his head, hands going wild, taking steps back and forth and then, well oh dear ... he just ... oh my, he just leaped.” She wasn’t the only one who claimed that Morrison was mentally disturbed. Officer Nancy Duncan of the DPD reported that Thomas Morrison was yelling at himself and going back and forth in two different voices as he argued with his split personality. Police searched the mobile home of Thomas Morrison, and what they found is stomach twisting. A young teenage girl— (Continue pg-6)
Trevor Abbud is a first-time author writing speculative fiction. Developing a taste for literature as a young child, Abbud took a serious interest in writing. His work has been published by Short-Story Me and has placed in the Sixfold Fiction Contest. Working as an at-home writer, Abbud is currently developing a novel and a collection of short stories.