A Short Story on the Website of
the Red Dirt Writers Society

A Grave Situation
by D. J. Russell (Sep 2007)

          Droplets of blood traced their way down his fingers like rain on a pane of glass.  Though the earth itself was soft, fragments of rock bit like small daggers into his cuticles.

          Though he kept his clawing at a frenetic pace, his intake of breaths became less frequent and more labored.  No matter how he tried, he could not seem to keep precious oxygen within his lungs.  He paid no heed as his lungs burned and begged for relief.  He could not stop his digging or else he would die. This was a fact clearer than his need for breath. Beyond this wall of earth was his salvation.

             All he needed now was to break through her wooden prison. Rain, now falling in fat drops, sizzled against his skin. He knew that if he could but reach her, he could save her.  If he could but brush his hand against her cheek once more, impart his last breath between her lips, then she would rise again. If he perished in the act, he would be no worse off.

          For if she could not live, then he must die.  His love was such that he could not and would not allow the veil of death to separate them.

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Revised September 2007.