raspberryfool: (Raspberryfool)
[personal profile] raspberryfool
He'd spent more than an hour entering the bunker, climbing down rubble-strewn staircases and corridors to find the control room; it was still partly intact but huge slabs of concrete lay across the desks and consoles. No light, no power, no people... just as he'd expected.

The old man flashed his torch around the room to illuminate the mess. An icy wind blew in through collapsed roofs and walls, stirring up piles of leaves blown in during the countless autumns since he'd last stood there. Even here, the elements had found their way of erasing the past and reclaiming their own. Quite against his once-iron will, an eerie chill ran up his spine. It looked just as he'd imagined it would.

A sudden movement made his heart jumpstart like an ancient engine. "Who's there?", he called into the shadows, but no reply came. The man raised his gun and cast his eyes slowly about the bunker. "Come out or I'll kill you where you stand". His torch picked out another movement in a far corner, startling him again. He ranged his gun with his finger poised on its trigger, then the creature showed itself.

A feral cat. It hissed and screeched and ran across the room in fright and disappeared from his view. Relieved, he lowered the sidearm and stepped aside to the open floor of the central room. Through his aged eyes he viewed the scene that had inhabited his nightmares for forty years... years he often wished had not been his. A boot sole here, a once-shiny trinket there... time and the wind had erased almost every trace of what had occurred there; now the leaves and dust covered everything.

"I'm glad you came", said a deep voice from somewhere in his memory. "I was beginning to think you were dead". Casting the torch around revealed the absence of any life; even the cat had deserted him. But he answered the voice anyway with his customary chill: "I am dead".

Walking slowly back to the abandoned consoles, he noticed something strange; a solitary red light was blinking. "Power", he said to the wind. "But where from?" He bent over and his hands, gnarled and rough, started flicking switches and turning knobs on the long-dead equipment. Then the light died. "Nothing. Nothing but ghosts", he mumbled and stood up again. Almost smiling at his unwelcome sentiment, he said, "I should have left you in the past where you belong". He surveyed the scene again, rubbed the dust from his hands and turned to go.

Behind him, a screen suddenly flickered into life. The old man turned back and raised his gun, his heart pounding again; his mouth dry and dusty... "Who is it? Show yourself", he demanded. The static resolved into a picture... it was of a young man, scarred and rough and dishevelled. The loudspeaker crackled and hissed and buzzed. "Avon. Is that you, Avon? Can you hear me?"

"Blake. You're dead. You've been dead for forty years. Who is this?" Avon's voice faltered.

"Avon, it's me, Blake. I set this up. I was waiting for you. Avon..."

Then the screen went dead.
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