I was traveling along life's highway in the universe one cold winter day when all at once, I came to an intersection. It was a crossroads, consisting of three different paths. Each path led off in a different direction to a different destination. It had gotten dim, like an evening twilight before a heavy storm. The wind blew, not hard, but enough to blow a hat off your head. It was eerily calm. I couldn't see where any of the paths led. I couldn't see any more than a few feet in front of me. I turned and started down the left path. It looked the less stressful. But, after a few feet, an enormous boulder appeared and blocked the path. I tried to go around and continue, but there was no way off this path. Walls had appeared on either side preventing me from going around. The boulder was too large and smooth to climb over, so I was forced to turn back.

I went back to the crossroads and decided to try the path in the middle. It was a little more rocky, not as smooth as the left path had been, but it was still an easy walk. I got a little further down this path, but just as I was getting comfortable, spikes pushed up from the ground blocking the path and any way off it. So again, I had to turn back.

I made it back to the crossroads and noticed that the path I had taken to arrive here had disappeared. Now, I had no choice but to go down the right path. I hesitated. It looked very foreboding. I could hear a storm in the distance getting closer. I hesitated still. I didn't want to go down this path. I would have rather just stayed where I was than step one foot on that path. But it had been chosen for me. The storm got closer. It was a big one,exceptionally dark. An unseen force pushed me from behind towards the path. The fog thickened. The calm twilight had been broken, the last fragments of normality broken with it. I tried resisting the force pushing me, but it was too strong. I was forced to put one foot on the path and that's all it took. It was the event horizon, the point of no return. The crossroads disappeared. I could now see the storm. It was coming rapidly. But I had to go forward. There was no going back no matter how hard I fought and tried. I started denying that I had to go this way. Everything I had known, my whole world, was starting to change. It couldn't be, I didn't want it too. I stopped, just staring, in denial, the horrible storm approaching quickly.

All at once, without me really realizing it, the storm was on top of me. The winds howled fiercely, blowing things over and away. The lightning struck continuously, shredding everything it touched, ripping apart the space-time fabric of my world. How could I endure this? It was too big, too much. Then a hole started forming in the path. It grew bigger, engulfing the path and everything around it. I couldn't escape it. I tried to run, but there was nowhere to go. My mentality was starting to fracture. I cried out for it to stop. Why was this path the one I had to travel? Its a despairing path, full of heartache and grief. The hole continued to grow. From within its depths, I could hear screams of agony. What was down there? Then I froze in horror as I realized the screams were my own. frantically searched for a way out, but there was none to be found. I tried to cry out, but couldn't. My voice was lost in the roar of the storm. Then the hole's perimeter reached me and I fell into the abyss. The storm seemed to follow me. I cried out with everything in me. Every now and then, the walls would seem to come within reach, but then expand again before I could stop my fall. From them, I could see something seeping when they came closer again. I realized it was tears. My tears. The walls were dripping of my tears. I continued to fall. I tried to convince myself that this wasn't happening. It was all just a nightmare. Why couldn't I wake up? Somebody wake me up PLEASE. "Its real", a disembodied voice said. I cried out harder, louder. Why is my world being turned upside-down? As I fell, I started seeing old memories, of family and friends. They would float past and then be gone. They were painful, but I was forced to watch. My mental strength started to wane. "Somebody help me, I don't understand this", I thought. I continued to fall. Somewhere, back on the surface, a part of me, a part of my heart, was ripped away by the storm, carried off, along with the world I had known. I sunk lower into the abyss, my mental state shattered. Would the pieces ever be put back together correctly? How could I be happy in this abyss? I felt so many things, I couldn't really make sense of them. I want out of this void. When will the freefall end?...

"Kid! Where are you? Help me, I need you!"

"Heyes…..Heyes!" Kid Curry shook his cousin a little violently. "Wake up Heyes!"

A pair of dark brown eyes opened fast and wide as Hannibal Heyes shook convulsively. He raised up from his bedroll onto his elbows with a look of pure fear on his face, his chest heaving. He eyes quickly scanned the horizon, looking, searching. They finally settled on Kid who was sitting on his own bedroll to the right and slightly behind Heyes. "Kid?"

"Its okay Heyes. I'm right here. You're safe," Kid reassured him, placing a hand on his shoulder. "You had the dream again didn't you?"

"Yeah," Heyes said, trying to slow his breathing. "It was so vivid this time. I hate that dream. And I hate the fact that I always seem to have it after we've been talking about…" Heyes trailed off, running his hand through his dark hair. He turned his eyes to stare out at the dark expanse of the rocky outcrop where they had camped for the night. "When we talk about that day. That horrible, unfair day our families…."

"I know Heyes," Kid said, cutting him off.

"Sorry Kid. I just,…..that dream, it just makes me feel angry, and alone. No offense."

"None taken. I know what you mean." Kid laid back down with a slight, understanding smile, turning on his side to stare off at nothing in particular.



"Thanks for being there."

"Now Heyes, don't go gettin' all mushy on me," Kid joked. Then after a few seconds, "You know I always will be cousin."

Heyes laid back down, staring up at the stars. He couldn't help but wonder, as he stared up into the vastness of space, if his parents were up there staring back at him. With that thought, a silent 'goodnight' escaped his lips as he closed his eyes, hoping for pleasant dreams and a better tomorrow.