Self Destruction – A Short Story

Simon retired to bed earlier than normal, for no other reason from boredom. He had been to the gym and had spent the rest of the day milling around the flat watching the usual scheduling on television. As Simon drifted of into a deep sleep he found himself walking down a street towards a cliff.

Below were the jagged rocks that the white waves crashed over, behind him was the path. Surly he had not taken a wrong turn, he was sure of it, he had followed the trail and should have arrived or at very least be continuing along. But he was stuck, he was stationary. Simon was thirty and had not achieved a great deal in his career, he had set himself certain goals and ambitions and had always felt he should have reached them by the time of his thirtieth birthday. With only months until that engagement it was now Simon had begun to think about the goals he had not yet scored.

Has he circled the spot where he stood, Simon knew there were three options open to him, one to carry on over the cliff, who would miss him, who would know? There was no one about to witness his downfall, he had in real life managed to alienate his friends, those close to him, the one who cared. but there were other options, he could stay in this rut, and remain stood and make a life for himself here, or, he could trace his steps and find an alternative path. But the light was fading and it was fading fast. Simon knew that if he failed to find his location by nightfall then all would be lost.

In the real world Simon stirred as his imagination carried his dream forward. Simon had now been out of work for several weeks. The past four years had seen him succeed at being self-employed even with no hope from making his first million you could always describe him as comfortable. But the recent banking crisis and his indecisive nature and ever-growing dislike for the job saw a sharp fall in his income. While still being able to feed and house himself the comfortable life was nowhere to be seen.

The sun was setting faster now, and Simon knew he had to make his mid up. There was nothing here. It was desolate, but it could be like that at the end of any path, and if he did trace his steps that would be a chance he would never make his destination. The fear of being stuck on a path to nowhere caused Simon to curl up like a sleeping baby. Simon was scared, he knew that what decision he made, would be the wrong one some how.

Simon had gone to bed in his usual affair. Hot chocolate and his laptop watching some documentary on BBC Four, half way though Simon would find himself rolling over and slowly the power of sleep would fall on him. Simon would never normally dream, not that he knew off anyway. Tonight was special and unbeknown to Simon the action that his dream character carried out, would affect Simon when and if he woke the next day.

Simon had carried out his operations the same way for the last ten years. He was hoping that surly by now he would get the phone call or the big break. The little jobs that would keep him enthused in the industry were no longer coming along and the love that had once possessed him was loosening her grip. It would be a matter of months till the love affair was over. There was no fork in the road, it was now straight on to self-destruction or fast track back along the road, to find another route, another passage, or a road, or a lane anything that would lead to a different ending. Simon looked up, and saw the sun was hovering above the horizon, he knew one thing, and that was he could not stay here.

He stood up and looked left to the cliff edge, he slowly walked to the crumbling edge, and forced himself to peer over. He had to steady himself as he felt his stomach lift to his chest and he fell backwards taking deep breaths from the thought, from the shock, from the realisation of what he could have done. He stood again, and looked behind him, to the long straight road that vanished into the clouds. He turned around and positioned both feet so the his toes were hanging of the cliff. He turned his head round as the wind blew and felt a rain drop land on his forehead. As it ran down his nose, Simons head turned back to look at the rock below. The rain drop hung before it finally descended to the water below.

The alarm abruptly woke Simon. With a swift fluent motion he grasped his phone and switched it off and went back to sleep.


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