The Twilight Zone is of course the creation of Rod Sterling. All copyrights and property belongs to him.
This is a short tale of an older man who has to deal with the ghost of his past. Violence and language.
Wind and rain swept the Canandaigua fishing pier as he turned off from Lake Shore Drive. The man drove to the end of the pier and shut the car off. The man got out and took a look around. Things had not changed much, the boat houses still looked the same, just a different coat of paint on them.
He looked off toward Squaw Island is still looked like it was sinking. "Not much has changed, except me" he said to himself. And that was the problem, he had changed and not for the better.
He glanced around as the police car drove around the circle and stopped next to him. The cop rolled the window down. "Evening Sir." The cop said. The man nodded to the cop.
The cop glanced to his car "You're a long way from Virginia." The man glanced to his car. "Yeah, it's been a long time since I've been back." Gesturing around him. "Just taking in the scenes." The cop looked the man over "Well you have a good night sir." He rolled up his wind and drove away.
The man watched the police car drive away, and then he looked around and waited.
After a time the fog grew more dense almost as if it wrapped the pier in a misty blanket. The man grew tense, more alert looking into the gathering gloom knowing that the other man was coming. He reached into his overcoat, felt the hilt of his sword, solid comfort against the fear that was stirring in his soul.
Then at the barest edge of his hearing a slight sound. "Malo mori quam foedari1" he said to himself
The sound faded and then he heard it again. The sound on metal scrapping on metal slowly growing closer, then the sound of someone softly singing coming out of the mist and fog. He knew the song well for he had sung it many times when he was younger.
The other person came into view. He was much younger, dressed much the same as him. He also had a sword. The katana was already in his right hand as he strolled up under the street light where the man stood. The young man stood for a moment looking at the older version of him and laughed. "Come Death, Come" he sung.
They both looked at each other as the fog and mist seemed to gather even deeper around them.
The young man laughed "What, no words of wisdom?" he sneered "Nothing to say after all these years." They both started to circle each other.
The older man glared at his younger self. "Like what?" He said waiting for the attack that he knew was coming. "You have been stalking me for nearly 20 years. From London and Toronto all the way back to Waikiki." He did not reach for the blade just yet. He wanted to speak to this younger self and try to reason with him.
The younger man waved his hand. "I tried to tell you!" he shouted "There is no other world for someone like you, like me. Look at you." He gestured "You are an old man. You tried to settle down, wife, house in the burbs, and what did it get you in the end?" The older man grimaced remembering the pain of an empty house. "Nothing." He whispered softly "Not a goddam thing." Turning to the other "But at least I had a life, what do you have? One scrapes after another? Waiting for your luck to run out? Jail or dead in a back alley somewhere?"
Now it was the turn of the younger man to frown. The older man tossed his coat, the katana in his right hand. "Now I'm tired of talk." He said the sword comfortable in his hand. "You want my life? Come take it!"
Both men lunged at each other, locking blades. They fenced for a bit feeling each other's skill level. After a few parries and hits. The younger man said "Not bad, you still have your skill." Then with an evil chuckle "But how's your endurance? You're already whizzing like an old goat."
The older man replied by taking a swing at the younger man's neck that barely missed. "I still have a trick or two left, bastard!" as he lunged again. The younger man retreated from the attack; they were both against the guard rail as the wind from the lake grew stronger and louder as the battle continued.
The older man's guard slipped and the younger man slashed at his chest slicing open his shirt drawing blood. "Well, well first blood." he laughed. He charged again and the older man barely deflected the attack.
Now the younger man closed for the kill as his older self fell to the ground, the sword falling from his grip.
He looked up as the younger self walked up the confident smile on his face that he used to have looking down on him. "I got to admit" he said as he prepared to administer the killing blow "you still have skill, but you lost the will to win."
The older man looked up at him. "Is that what you think? I didn't come here to die, I came here to kill!"
The younger man looked astonished "Really?" Reading the killing strike "Any last words? Maybe "Malo mori quam foedari." The old man smiled as the sword swung down as he rolled quickly out the way taking up his blade and driving it through his younger opponent.
He drew the blade back with a vengeance; the younger man stared at the growing pool of blood in astonishment, looking up at his older self.
The older man looked down with a smile "No." he said "Actually I was thinking of more like Job tvojemadj2
The younger man spits blood and curses "Go to hell!" he screams
"You first." The older man says as the sword fall taking the younger man's head.
Then there is silence as the sounds of the wind and waves take over. He looked around as the body of his younger self slowly faded away. He looked to the wounds he had received as they too faded away. He took in a deep breath as real peace began to filter through his very being. He gathered himself together as he walked to the Malibu with the Virginia plates and started back to Lakeshore Drive. He turned right and drove off into the night.
What the man did not notice was that from behind the dry docked boats at the marina, another car was parked that he would have recognized as one he drove many years ago. The battered old red Mustang pulled onto the street. His younger self looked down the road that the Malibu had just went. "Well." He said to him "At least you found peace again." Then chuckling to himself "For now anyways." The he started down Main Street toward the city and the future.
Most people never find peace in their lives. They sometimes have to have their past catch up to them and they have to beat it in one form or another. A small tale in the Twilight Zone.
1 Death before dishonor
2 Go home and fuck your mother: Russian curse