" Please allow me to introduce myself
I'm a man of wealth and taste
I've been around for a long long year
Stole many a man's soul and faith "
- The Rolling Stones
Nick yawned and started to
undress himself. He was very tired and exhausted
by yet another long day of hard work. He decided to go
straight to sleep,
not to continue to read his new book tonight. He yawned
again while he was
changing into his pj's. As he did every night, he kissed
the framed picture of
Julia goodnight. He looked forward to the delicious
drowsiness of sleep. He
didn't know that this night would be different from
everything he had
experienced before ......
Nick woke up suddenly in
the middle of the night. He was a very light sleeper
and had sensed that he had heard a sound. He was alert at
once and tried to
look around in his room, but it was just too dark. His
eyes met the shining
numbers of his alarm clock: It was 3 a.m., way too early
to get up, even
for Nick. After a while, when he was just starting to go
back to sleep
again, Nick heard that sound again, he quickly sat up up
and switched the
lights on. He looked up with a start and saw a man
standing at the end of
Nick wanted to pull his
gun at him, but found out very quickly that he
couldn't move. "Damn it !" he said quietly and
tried to calm himself down.
He took a good look at his late visitor, who didn't say a
single word. The
man looked extremely strange with pitch dark hair and
features. His eyes were black,too and seemed to pin Nick
to his bed. It
gave him the creeps. The stranger wore a long, dark coat
which made him
look even more scarier.
" What do you want
from me ?" Nick finally asked.
" Well, actually I'm
here to give you a precious gift. " the man said in
soothing voice and smiled.
Nick started to get
interested in this guy, it was obvious that he wasn't
any "normal" friend who had decided to drop in
for a little meeting. But he
was also sure that he had never met this man before, he
remember that !
Nick thought about
screaming for help, but he didn't want to get Derek and
his other friends to get involved into this strange
incident before he knew
how dangerous his visitor really was. And he had to admit
that he was kind of
curious what this guy wanted to tell him.
" It seems that you
won't just disappear again, so let's talk !" Nick
surprised at his own calmness.
The man seated himself
next to Nick and groaned as if he was just at the
beginning of a exhausting matter.
" I finally found
some time to visit you and tell you about my offer
" And what offer
would that be ?" Nick asked him.
" I give you the
enormous chance to eliminate everything you've ever did
your life," he said as if this would be the key to
" And why should I do
this ?" Nick asked amazed at this man's madness.
" I think we both
know why. There were several ... uhm ... incidents in
your life that you and your friends would be really
better off without. "
he said slowly, choosing his words carefully.
" So wait a minute.
Do I get you correct that you offer me to pretend that
I've never lived ? Really great but, no thanks, I think I
have to turn
that offer down !! Oh, and thanks for dropping by !"
Nick said sarcastically.
" No, it wouldn't be
pretended; It would be as if you have never lived.
Everything you've done would be erased," he
answered, not showing that he took note of Nick's
" Again, thanks, but
I think that you're a complete flake," Nick said.
His visitor didn't look angry at all.
" At first sight, it
may seem so, I agree. But you'll realize that when you
take a closer look at it, that it really isn't such a bad
deal, but quite
the opposite !! " he tried to assure Nick.
" So let's get
started right away ! I'll show you how the lives of your
friends and family, how they would have turned out
without you. " he said.
" This is rubbish.
Let me go or I'll scream for help !! " Nick warned
The man smiled like a
lunatic: "That would be pretty useless, my friend.
Just relax and look at what I have to offer !"
Nick knew that he was
right and tried to relax his muscles. There was just
no way out for him. He'd never involve his friends in a
this. And he also knew that he has been through a lot of
and he had always find a solution !
" So let's begin with
your first big mistake that was the trigger for all
your later wrong-doings," he said. Nick shivered, he
had a slight idea what
this guy was talking about ...
" You were five and
your little sister was two and a half ... " he
" No !!" Nick
wanted to scream, but he could only get a hoarse sound
" You dirty son of a
bitch !!" he said intensively.
" This morning,
you'll be so thankful for opening your eyes, " the
said, pretending not to hear Nick's insults.
" Let's continue: You
were five and she was two and a half. It was on a
beautiful summer day."
Nick looked at the wall
facing his bed. A film was projected there, like in
a cinema. He saw himself hand in hand with his with Faye,
sister. They were joking around. And he saw his Mom,
saying this words he'd never
forget, no matter how much he tried to repress it.
" Nicky, please take
care of Faye for a while. I've forgotten something.
she said and stroke the hair out of Nick's little face.
He smiled proudly
because his mother gave him so much responsibility. He
nodded and his
mother went back to their home to get something for their
picnic. She had
surprised him and his sister with this idea this morning.
They had gone to
this wonderful meadow, not far from their house.
Faye started to annoy
Nick, she wanted to run around and look at stuff.
" Let me go !" she screamed with her little
shrill voice. Nick, still
watching this scene, knew what would come next: "
No, no ... " he said quietly.
His visitor smiled at him:
" Now you start to understand, right ? "
Nick tried to ignore him,
then he turned back to the screen.
" Faye, stop it ! " he said as a young boy to
" Mom told me to wait here and watch over you !
" he boasted.
Faye just started screaming, this was her usual answer to
didn't agree to. She just screamed very loudly and Nick
got nervous. He was
afraid that someone would hear his sister's crying and
blame him. Maybe
that person would even think that he was a bad brother !
" Ok, ok, you little
whiner ! But don't run to far away, you baby !" he
said and as soon as he let go of her hand, she was gone.
He watched her
running down the meadow.
" No ! At least tell
her that you love her !! " the "old" Nick
said, " You
idiot, tell her ! " But of course, the little boy
didn't, he was now on an
adventure of his own. He had found a strange looking
piece of glass laying
in the grass and started examining it. He was still
completely in his own
little word when his mother returned.
" Where's your sister
? " she asked him.
" Uhm, she wanted to stroll around a bit. " he
said, still playing.
" Didn't I ask you to take care of her ? " his
mother asked angrily and
started to call out for her. But Faye didn't appear
" I look for her and
you stay right here. " his mother insisted and gave
Nick a fierce look. She continued to look for Faye, but
couldn't find her.
She searched all hideaways a little girl would find
fascinating. A little
bit later, she started to get really nervous.
" Nicholas, come and
help me ! " she said to him, pulled him up from the
ground and pushed him with her. He was about to start
crying when his mother
suddenly shouted: " Oh my God ! The lake !!!! "
They hurried towards the
peaceful little lake that lay behind some trees. They
could see her even
from this distance, she lay facedown in the lake, not
moving. Her white
skirt was all dirty and messed up. " NO !! "
Nick's mother screamed and ran
towards her little girl. She was able to get her out of
the water because
it wasn't very deep. She hold her tightly and then spoke
to her frightened
son: " Run home and go to the Millers, tell them to
call 911 !! "
Nick tried to realize what
was happening but everything was just spinning
around in his head. He hesitated for a second, then he
starting running. He
ran faster than he had ever run before. It felt as if his
burst and he was afraid that he would die, too. Back at
the lake, there was
Mrs. Boyle, now on her own, still holding Faye tightly.
With this, the scene ended
and the wall became dark again. Nick was silent,
still in a shock about what he had to relive. He
remembered the funeral
only a few days later. He was supposed to be with some of
friends, but he had somehow managed to sneak away and
watch the funeral for
a short time, standing behind the iron graveyard gates.
He'd never forget
how that cool iron felt on his face. He remembered that
tiny, tiny white
coffin with the white lilies on top of it. Until then, he
didn't even know
that children died. He thought of himself, as every child
does, to be
immortal. But from that day on, he knew that he could die
in a snap of a
second. This was the day his sleeping problems started;
He was afraid to go
to sleep, afraid that he would die, too. He felt the
tension between his
parents and the looks of reproach from them. It was never
said aloud, of
course, but in his heart, he felt that he was responsible
for his sister's
death. He learnt to live with guilt.
Shortly after Faye's
death, his father quit his job and became a member of
the Legacy. And from then on, everything got worse with
The visitor interrupted Nick's thoughts: " And this
is what would have
happened if you would have never been born. " he
Another film started
playing on the wall. Again, it was at the meadow, but
Nick could only see his Mom and Faye. They were laughing
and joking around
while they packed they stuff and got ready to go home
again . Nick
shuddered. Then there were different scenes, each of them
growing up. He saw her growing to that beautiful woman
she was never
allowed to become, he saw her at college and finally at
her wedding. The
last scene was Faye, saying hi to her children after
coming home from work.
Children that were never born. This was just too much.
" Stop it, stop
torturing me, you freak ! " Nick tried to yell, but
he was only able to whisper. The visitor smiled again:
" Hush, hush, my
friend. This is only the beginning, Nick. There is one
more thing: Do you
remember what happened to your Dad after Faye's death
?" he said. Nick
closed his eyes as he remembered the rapid changes of his
" Exactly. We both
know that you are to blame. Right after the wedding,
your parents drifted apart and your father developed a
" That's not true !
He was a drinker and violent even before my sister
died. " Nick protested.
"Well, that's true.
Kind of ... But he was never as violent as after her
death. You are responsible for your own scars, buddy.
" he answered.
" Stop telling me
this crap ! I mean it's just not true ... right !!?
Nick said, not sure what to think. Everything got mixed
up in his head. He
had spent days of his life thinking about these things
and now this freak
said it aloud. So could there really be some truth in it
? He realized that
he developed a severe headache.
The stranger sensed his
insecurity and decided to continue his show.
" And voilą, here's your next big mistake ! "
he said and yet another film
Nick lifted his head
slowly. He saw himself years ago as he met Liz for the
first time. There was a short sequence of their happy
surprising her on her birthday by driving to a beautiful
beach house. Then
he saw Liz telling him that he was the only one for her
and that she wanted
to spent her whole life with him. And then, Nick
remembered his feelings
when she said this. He was scared to death, scared
because he didn't want
to lose his freedom, but also because he was so scared to
turn out like his
father. So he decided just to leave her in the morning,
silently. He didn't have the guts to face her and to see
" What's wrong with
you. you idiot ! She's such a beautiful woman ! And see
what you did to her ! " he said angrily and showed
her Liz on the next
morning while she was reading Nick's short note that he
had left in the
kitchen. She broke down, crying, grasping for something
to hold onto.
" You might want to know that she didn't have a
relationship in the next
two years, she just couldn't trust any man. Without you,
she wouldn't have
to go through all this torment. " he told Nick.
" But let's just go
right on. "
Nick saw himself, way
back, crawling through the jungle.
" Boyle, you'll go
ahead and look for enemies ! " Richter said. Nick
and went to his position. Nick watched himself as he
struggled through the
deadly jungle. He couldn't close his eyes, although he
knew what would come
next. He was sneaking between the green trees and
then,suddenly, the noise
behind him started: The enemies were everywhere, bombing
the jungle behind
him. Everything turning to flames. He took cover, but he
couldn't hide from
all these screams behind him. They chilled him to his
bones. The next
scene showed Nick as he returned and found all his fellow
some could only be hardly recognized as humans.
" Any beginner would
have smelled that ambush ! These men didn't have to
die. They died because you weren't paying enough
attention. They all had a
very bright future in store, but you destroyed it !
" Nick's visitor blamed
him. Nick felt that everything he said was like a little
needle that hurt
him. This guy seemed to have find a way into Nick's mind
and all his hidden
memories. And he didn't mind exposing him to the
daylight. The man showed
him a short synopsis of how the lives of the men would
have turned out if
they hadn't been killed in the prime of their lives. Nick
felt as if his
heart was just a cold lump in his chest, he started
shivering: " Why don't
you just leave me alone ? " he asked angrily.
" Damn it, I thought
you began to understand. You can give all these people
their lives back again, Nick ! Even Julia ... " he
" No ! Leave Julia
out of this ! " he warned him.
" How could I do that
? This is one of your biggest, and let me add this,
most stupid mistakes. It wasn't Derek's fault, it was
yours. She was your
gift and you didn't cherish her. Man, you seem to be a
real serial killer,
Nick ! " the man said and smiled his creepy smile.
He took a bow to the
screen and said dramatically: " Connemara, Ireland.
Nick and Julia were
sitting in a cafe. Nick knew that he just wouldn't have
the strength to face this once again. This was just too
much. He saw them
split up to do some research, then there was that field
again, that bloody
field. Julia was crucified and her dead eyes looked blank
at him. He saw
himself kneeling down beside her and screaming, screaming
up to the sky, to
a God, he couldn't any longer believe in.
" You know, she had a
wonderful life in front of her, too bad you never
allowed here to live it. And do you know what is ironic
about this ? I
don't think that you really grieved about her, you
grieved about yourself.
You never told her that you love her, you lost the big,
and only love, of
your life; You grieve about your lost future with her.
Isn't death an
egotistical thing ? What about her future, her plans ?
" he said, stepping
closer and looking Nick in his eyes. Nick backed up when
he saw that his
eyes were completely black, they had no pupils.
" Well, there were
also some recent mistakes by you while your working in
the Legacy, but I don't have that much time ! " the
man said sarcastically.
" So what is your
exact offer ? To relive my life ? " Nick asked, too
to protest in any way.
" No, no, that's more
the deal of the Other Side. My offer is to make it
able for you to erase all these mistakes that you have
done in your
pathetic life. All these people could still be alive ...
" he said.
" So it would feel as
if I have never lived ? " Nick asked.
" Yeah, right. I
admit, that's the bad part for you ... You would have to
uhm , sell me your life, ok ? But every contract has its
fine print, right ?
" he said jokingly. " But you have to remember
that all your friends would
be alive and kicking, and you have said yourself more
than one time, that
you would die for them. " he added.
" And why do you make
me such an offer ? " Nick asked suspiciously.
" Well, let's just
say that I have the power to do it. I've done a quite
good number of deals all my life. I'm a really good
businessman. " the
Nick closed his eyes and
all these scenes he just saw haunted him again.
All this guilt he had lived with all his life came back,
him. He saw Julia in his mind's eye and his dead buddies.
He knew that he
was to blame for all this, his doubts came true. He often
felt that he was
unable to deal with this guilt, he would think that it's
gone, but it just
needed a word or a gesture and it was back again,as vivid
as ever. It
didn't stop nagging inside him. Suddenly, Nick felt very
sure and calm. He
knew exactly what he had to do: " Ok, I think that's
a fair deal,"
he said to his visitor.
The man smiled: "
Perfect. I have a contract with me, just to make sure
both get what we want. Just sign it and we're done.
" he said and presented the
paper to Nick. He took the suddenly appearing paper and
took a close look
at it. " Do you have a pen ?" he asked, almost
failing to speak aloud
because of his dry throat. The man smiled at him. "
We have to sign it with
our blood or it won't work. " he said. " Those
are the rules ! " he added
Nothing could surprise
Nick any longer, so he just nodded.
The man handed a knife to Nick, but just as he was about
to cut himself,
Nick's door opened. Kat entered the room: " Nick,
whatever it is, don't do
it ! " she screamed and ran towards him. She grabbed
the contract and tore
it apart. Nick looked confused at her, not knowing why
she appeared so
suddenly. The visitor stepped toward Kat, obviously
angry. But Kat faced
him: " Leave ! " she ordered him. Nick wanted
to interrupt her, but she
gave him a look to stay where he was. He was happy to
have someone taking
the control, even if it was just a brave little girl.
His visitor backed up and
started to vanish: " I'll get you sooner or
later, Boyle ! I need people like you in my kingdom,
strong-willed, but also loyal to
death. " he shouted before he was finally gone. Nick
looked puzzled at the
spot where his visitor stood just seconds ago.
" Kat, you little
angel !!! Thank God ! But how did you know that I was in
danger in the first place ? " he asked, still amazed
at the skills of this
" Nick, don't be
stupid ! You know that I can see things. I just woke up
and knew that you were in terrible danger. " she
" Kiddo, I almost did
a big mistakes . I've forgotten to think about my
living friends ! " he said, relieved it was all
over. Kat didn't know what
he was exactly talking about, but as he opened his arms,
she hugged him
tight. She looked out of the window: " The sun's
rising, Nick. You've
promised me that we would get up very early and make
everybody ! " she reminded him.
" Ok, you get dressed
and begin to set the table, I'll just take a shower
and get dressed, too. Then we can get started, huh ?
" he told her. She
nodded and went back to the room she usually stayed in
sleep-overs in the Legacy House.
After Nick took his shower
and got dressed, he sat at his desk and took his
" Tonight, I've
almost done the most stupid thing you can think of. I
almost sold my soul, and my life with that. Now, I can
say that it was
completely stupid and that I was a complete moron. But
earlier today, it
all made sense to me. I was raised with guilt and shame
and when this kind
of behavior was planted in you, it grows and grows and
can't be easily
I thought that I could
sacrifice myself for something that is already far
far away. It's hard for me to learn that you can't play
tricks on your own,
or other's people's, fate. Whatever happens, happens. If
you live your life
with questions like "what would be if ... "
you'll kill yourself, slowly,
but surely. It's easy for me to write this down, but
living like this is
very hard. They are still days were I'd love to give
everything up, but
they become fewer and fewer.
It was also a hard
lesson for me to learn that hey are people who really do
care for me, that I mean something to them. I can't live
like I used to
because of this, but it's a wonderful change.
And there's another
thing I've found out: Even the devil can't harm you
when there's the pure and innocent love of a child to
protect you. And
that makes me believe that, after all, maybe the world
" Nick, come on,
we're late !! " Kat shouted impatiently. Nick
closed his diary and went downstairs to join her.
- The End -
A big thanks to my
best friend Steffy ( I look forward to that apartment
and also a very, very big thanks to Alyssa. Without her,
this story would
still only be in my mind !! She was always very patient
and not tired to point
out all my mistakes. Now, I even know how to spell