“What is your greatest fear?” the man sitting not so far away from her asked.

she was lying on the chair, facing the ceiling  , her hands clasped together on her tummy, her legs crossed over each other,  her eyes closed.
“Why death?” he says, one hand holding a pen and the other a jotter , he was wearing glasses and the name on  his crested vest was written “Dr James Jedieh”
“I fear getting old, I fear when I see how a once strong and healthy person , who could jump and run and scream , who is so energetic suddenly becomes old and grey, so weak, can barely move without help, can barely talk sometimes and then they literally  become a liability to their family. I fear the moments when no one is there to cater for them, and they become like a child, sometimes their bowels are released unpon themselves, they eat and spill food on themselves ,they have to be bathed and cleaned . I fear old age and then. .I fear that moment when they are too weak to do anything..so weak that the bed becomes their skin ..and eventually…that the earth becomes their bed.. I fear that Doctor…dying!  Total nothingless..I fear not able to see , feel and touch ..and what lays behind the living walls and that if truly there is a heaven or hell and that maybe it was all a lie, a ramblings of a mad man that had jotted it down into words and a book and called it the bible, I don’t know….but I fear death and nothingless and total..blackness. ”
“You only fear something when you don’t know about it?”
“Don’t you know about death Doctor? haven’t you felt it, haven’t you seen it?”
“How do you mean? if you are speaking in metaphors ofcourse I don’t know death,  I haven’t felt nor seen it even in the context of which you speak”
she smiles, while her eyes remained closed, she smiles “Well I have Doctor.., I have …And death , death is more than a word, it’s a darkness ..its a man”
He shifts in his seat, leaning forward he writes in his jotter
“Explain what you mean Tina, why do you say death is a man and that you have seen him, what does he look like..this death you speak off..?”
she opens her eyes and turns to him..
  “Yes he is a man, with eyes and ears, with skin and a heart, but he is also a shadow, his hands becomes claws , his eyes becomes a deep hallow sucking you in… that is what he looks like,darkness , because he is a sillohette of a man but he is a shadow and all that he is and about is to take you.. take you”
“to where?”
“To the mountains , where the water and the land don’t meet, where the earth is soft and hard and the water within is neither white or black…where the land never sleeps and the eyes continues to see”
“hmmmm” ? the doctors says , writing again  , he jotts ” inability to separate reality from fantasy , troubled  childhood, speaks in metaphors , disillusioned . Needs to be evaluated, book another appointment , not a danger to self or others around her at the moment, ”
“Doctor ?”
“You know…the bible says that one should always put their houses in order, you know, before the end. that is why here, we have lawyers , you write your will, make sure your family is okay ..knowing that when you get old, really old and sick you eventually die and  your wife and  kids  are taken care off you know”
“Yes, I am not a christain though , I am an atheist but yes, you are correct Tina, one should put one’s house in order before the end.”
“Do you fear death Doctor? ”

“Well, I suppose but…all men would die ..someday. I suppose one should be scared of dying.”
“have you kept your house in order doctor??” 
he frowns , and looks up, she is lying down and staring at him, her hands under her right cheeks as she rests on it turning to face him
“One must always be insured , we insure our cars and houses and everything, and-”
‘I asked if your house is in order doctor??”
His frown depends , unsettled ” Why do you ask that Tina?'”
“Because your family, they would be taken care off when you are gone”
“What do you mean? my family is being taken care off now that I am alife and it would be a long time before I die …years and years to come and by the time I eventually die, I would be soo old and grey and lived so much that I may even welcome death and..they might cry a little and miss me but their lives would go on because what I left behind for them would be okay for them” he smiles
“Good then Doctor, good . Then you are ready to die”
He  blinks… “Ready to die?” he looks at her “Are you speaking in one of your metaphors Tina?”
She laughs “Oh no doctor , I am not. never have been . I say things as they are and as they ought to be..you have done the most important thing doctor,  you have kept your house in order, it is important that little detail,order, so now ..you are ready to die, because death, the man ,he is here, ready to take you.”
he jotts “Exhibiting insane tendencies , possible state of delirium.  ”
“Doctor … You must prepare yourself doctor ” She says, but it wasn’t what she said that freezes him, it was how she said it,and the way her once soft tone had turned into something more. .as though she was sneering …

He felt a sudden chill, as though someone had suddenly opened the windows and a gush of cold air baths his skin,he rubs his arms dropping the pen and book at the same time..

“Tina..are you cold.?”
“No, I never get cold. ..not when he is here”
“who..when who is here ?”
“Death.. he is here ” She whispers, staring at him
Now,he knew what he felt was not cold,it was fear, the hairs at the back of his head stands…
“Whe- re..where..is.h..h..he ” ? he asks , it was ridiculous,  but whatever she was saying and how she was saying it was making him unsettled, .. now he felt his head growing big, expanding , and he felt a presence  , towelling behind him…
“He is behind you..Death is behind you..And he has come to take you doctor, to the Tree where it never sleeps, and do you know why..? Because you had taken a life before it began to breath. ” 
And then he saw the shadow like a cloak covering him and then he turns , standing up he turns to see a man who isn’t  a man, he turns to see a shadow who is a man..
And soon as the shadows stretches out his hands towards him, he saw its claws …
“No no no no” He screams kicking the chair away trying to run away….

but the shadow holds him, grabbing him he hugs him to himself…and then he holds his face , casing Dr James to stare into his face that isn’t a face , but a shadow of a man who isn’t a man…
“Relax doctor …And stare into its eyes…For where he is taking you ,  paradise woulld be far from it” Tina says, standing up behind him she urges him,  while the doctor who had been forced by the claws of hands to stare into his face began to scream and scream and scream
The hallowed holes of the shadow’s face sulks him in,taking all of him in untill what was left were nothing but Death and Tina standing close to the chair  ..
then Suddenly she slumps to the ground. .and the shadows evaporates, living nothing .
“Tina..wake up, wakeup ” Her husband shakes her up,


“What..I am awake . stop I am awake , what is wrong ??”
“You were talking in your sleep..and making sounds and ..moving your hands ”
“I was? ”
” Yes,” her husbands says Sighing , he rubs his eyes and puts on the bedside light. it was still dark.
“Yes. Where you having a bad dream,because you seemed so”
She frowns …”I don’t remember. .I don’t remember what i was dreaming off” She confessed..
“it’s okay, just go back.to sleep..” he tells her pulling her back to him , pulling the covers back over them, hugging her back to him,he puts off the light and they fall asleep.
“Don’t you want to have breakfast baby before you leave for work??”
“No babe, I am already late. .over slept ” her husband says
“I am sorry baby, guess it was my fault, ” she says handing him a cup of coffee , which he takes and kisses her lips, then he takes a sip of the coffee. ., grabbing the remote he puts on the TV as Tina places a plate of food before her.
“it’s okay baby, ” he tells her focusing on the TV as a woman pops up,and a picture of a man pops up behind her.

Tina frowns “Wait, turn it up baby,  the man’s face looks familiar,  what are they saying about him?”
he turns it up.
“Dr James Jedieh was found dead this morning in his office , time of death was put around yesterday , mid afternoon. his secretary had said he went in with his last appointment for the day,a woman who had fixed an aporitnment with him personally instead of going through the normal Secretary, but it wasn’t something that was new. Patients who didn’t want their problems public knowledge always did that.
Dr James Jedieh was found , dried to his bones , without a visible areas to show that he had bled to death and even if he bleed to death,  the blood should be visible but there is no blood not in his office , on the floor and not even in his veins , and the strangest thing was that…he didn’t have his eyes , what was left was just am empty hallow shell in his head. .where the eyes used to be.
investigations are on going , to find out who the last patient was with Dr James and if she had anything to do with his death which..is strangely impossible. Dr James was a healthy man, a comfortable man and what ever was the cause of death  made him look from a young and vibrant man to that of a old greyed sickened man, he looked like a dried wood. it is safe to say that everyone is as shocked as I am, this isn’t possible. 

Dr James Jedieh is survived by his wife and two kids ”
“Oh my God ..that  is horrible babe, did you see his picture like. .how possible is that, doesn’t make any sense ” Her husband says,


Tina is silent, she is blinking rapidly,..

Her husband turns to look at her 
” Tina? baby are you okay??”


she is speechless , that face..that face looked farimilair , that face …so farmiliar like that she could hear his voice, smell his perfume and can picture the way he jotted down and advised her…
how..how ..
Her husband is shaking her ” TINA !!!”
“Yes yes..Charles , why are you shaking me like that “?
“I lost you there for a second. , you zoned out on me. Are you okay? these days you seem like you are not even here..”
“I am here..”
“No I know you are here but you seem like you are elsewhere , ever since. .ever since the accident you haven’t been yourself.  Should we go back to the hospital, ?”
she frowns “I am okay Charles I am, we don’t need to go back to the hospital. we lost a child Charles, it’s normal for me to…not be myself some times but I am here.  I am fine. ”
he goes to her and hugs her “I am sorry babe, I should just put this off, I guess even the story on the news is upsetting enough ” he turns the TV off and stares at her
“Sure you are fine babe? you would tell me if you are not right ?”
she manages a smile and nods “Promise”
“Good” he places a kiss to her forehead “Have to go to work, let me know if you need anything and please go out babe, you need to start going out , meet friends , have fun, don’t be at home all day, i worry ”
“Yes…I will..now go” she pushes him out of the door.
” Oh my goodness. !!!! wow!!!!! Hi Tina, how are you? haven’t seen you for. .ages, how are you?” the red haired woman who had just come into the supermarket where Tina was shopping sights her and rushes to hug her
“Oh Mary hi??” Tina is taken aback

“Oh wow!!! you look…you look unwell are you okay. I heard you got married and that you were..pregnant.  where is the little bundle of joy, I am sure she or he must be beautiful just like you and that your amazing cute ass husband of yours..you guys dated all through college and I knew that you guys were going to be forever and everything.  I am so sorry I couldn’t attend 

the wedding but I was out of state, travelling the world and all of that..but..hey, where is the little one..?” She is looking around ..
“There is no baby”
“I am sure he would have such beautiful eyes you know I always loved your eyes and then I am sure your kid is going to love chocolates like you as you did in school,  and…”
“I SAID THERE IS NO BABY!!”  she shouted 
“Whoaaa what??” Mary stares in shock at her… “What do you mean..like. ..There is no baby?”
‘”I lost it, in an accident. a few weeks ago. ..and ..”

Mary pulls her into a hug  “Oh dear I am so so sorry..forgive me” she hugs her , Tina pulls away.. 
“Its fine. look ..I have to go ..its nice running into you but..I have to go..”
“No..please..let me take you home”
“No Mary,it’s fine ”
Tina is standing infront of a small tomb, where it was written..
“Our baby sleeps here.

Gone before living ” 
she bends , placing a flower on the tomb she places a kiss there..
“I miss you Mine..because that is what you were to me..to us. I hope you find peace in the warmth of God’s arms baby, mama and papa loves you” she says
“I love you too” 
she turns , wondering if she actually heard that voice or it was her in her head.

then she turns back to the tomb..  she screams backing sway. .
A baby, a baby sat on the tomb, dangling her legs and playing with the sand of the earth.
“Mama? ”
she faints 
“Tina..Tina baby wake up?” Her husband shakes her awake..
“What’s wrong.. What’s wrong ??” She is startled..
“You were having a nightmare,  what’s wrong babe? ”
she holds her head , it’s aching “I ..I didn’t remember ”
he sighs pulling her to him  “baby,  this nightmares,  you need to go to the hospital ”
“I am fine really..I just want to go back to bed” 
“Okay baby, come here” he pulls her in, and they go back to sleep.
“What did they want Charles ?” She asks him as he puts down the phone and turns to her , it was the evening of the next day.
“Someone had dug up our baby’s tomb and removed it’s body…who who would do such a thing..??” he says
“Someone ..who baby who?? ”
“they don’t know. it was just the tomb touched,  and they didn’t see anything ,the securities like….I don’t know. I have to go there.  I have to.. they said the coffin was empty …and our baby gone..I mean….who..what. .” he sinks to the chair
Tina is standing there, her vision blurs.. she slumps to the ground 
“Tina, Tina? ? ” Charles rushes to her, shaking her , grabbing the bottle of water on the table he sprinkles it on her face 
“Tina please wake up.”
They were driving to the hospital , she was in labour, she was screaming in the car, and he was trying to concentrate on the road and then on her..
A car comes out of nowhere and swerves them off the road..

by the time paramedics came , the child was already in distress, by the time they got them to the hospital..and she pushed..he was dead as soon as his head touched the nurse ‘s hands. 
it had broken them, she had had a nervous breakdown .
they buried the child a week later, inside a white small coffin, `amongst family and friend.
She had cried and a cried. 
Ad then one day, she just stopped crying , her eyes refusing to shed anymore tears..
The person who had swerved them off the road, was a man,  he was a doctor,  he had been drunk, a hit and run. he never stopped.
She remembered his face,  and the name on the crested vest he wore…

He knew that because she saw him, she saw him when he didn’t see them, she was screaming, trying to get the man’s attention waving for him to stop,  calling out for her husband’s name, but it was too late.. but she saw him and he didn’t stop when they swerved  off the road by him and summersaulted.
And when she had woken up in the hospital..she had woken up with his name on her lips..”Dr James Jedieh ”
She had left home, going to her graveside everyday. To cry for her child.
She didn’t return home that day, falling asleep there.
it was the cold breeze that woke her up, and the rustling of the leaves .

Her tears had dried on her cheeks, and it was dark, but the errie sounds of night gave her goosebumps. 
but something was wrong… there was a tree in the middle of the graveside,  it wasn’t there before.
it was pulling her,  pulling her to it and then she had gotten up and began to move towards it, each step her fear increases but she couldn’t stop.
“mama!!” She heard it again.
“Who is there..who are you?”
“WHO ARE YOU? ” She screamed..
“Why are you scared, I would not harm you..”
she turns around to find him, him that she couldn’t describe. , she backs away.., falling down and backing away  , her back hitting the tree “What. .who ar. .are you? ”
“I am the taker of life, life’s that had been cut too short, or stayed too long, life’s that ought to be cut short and removed from the earth.  I am known as many things but you can call me..Death”
Cold sweeps through her body, she bags to scream.
“Do not scream, if I wanted to kill you i would. I have come here to take life..life thay belongs to me, and I have seen you,broken, sad and I was pitiful and I know I am a life taker and I thought…what if there was something I could do for you…to make your miseries lighter even if you cause more miseries..tell me and I would do ..it.. Sssshhhh be calm” he says, suddenly calmness came unpon her.. “Speak. ”
she had found herself talking to a shadowed man, about her husband,  her unborn child , the accident , the death …the hit and run ..everything .
“What do you desire ..to see your child again even for the last time or to know where they are being kept,  the dead ones or to have the one who have  done these to be where the others are….what do you desire. .”
“To see her..where she is ..to know that..she or he is safe..at peace ”
“it was a she…and look behind you.. ”
 she does, but all she sees is the tree
“Look behind you again, stepping away from the tree ” 


And she does…. backing away..away from it in peace…’No no no no no” she backs away .
the tree, which had been nothing but a tree became alife..
Alife with eyes, ……
“Your daughter is alife there…dead but alife..dead to the physical but alife to the sprititual. You had seen her…just now. see had bee sitting on the tomb side. .she called you mama”

she is shaking her head…”I want to see her again..I want to see her again”
“you can’t.  but all you have to know that…she is here..dead but safe, those blinking eyes is because …she isn’t at peace.  that is why you saw her..that is why she would remain here…in that tree and when she finally have peace…she goes to the Hills, to the land of peace ..of darkness…of nothingless. .but the tree…the tree is where she would remain till then. The Trees of eyes,”
“Tell me… do you desire to let your daughter have peace ”
she is speeches ..
“Do you desire to let your daughter have peace ??”
“Yes…Yes ” she screams out…”I do..I do”
‘Then. ..let me..let me give it to her..”

“How. ..??”
“Gimme a name”
“Whose name..”
“You know…the name. Give me his  name ”
“DR JAMES JEDIEH “!!” She breaths 

Then we shall pay him a visit. and I will give him what he deserves..
“Then what happens to my daughter. ?”
“I will give her a befitting burial.  I will dig her from the earth..and place her in the hills. she would find peace. . away from the tree of eyes. ”
Then he …the darkness. .the one called death, came closer to her..closer to her till all she felt was a cloak of nothingless. 
A few weeks later, She had found herself booking an appointment with a doctor over the phone..
A few days later she had gone to his office , knocked on the door and he had opened it…
“Yes please…Come in” he says opening the door wife for her to come in , she enters with a smile on her face, and when she sat on the chair and stares at him..
He sees the shadowed man standing behind him..
“Tina..Tina. .open your eyes? ?” Her husband shakes her awake..
“Are you okay??” he gathers her into his arms..
“Yes..Yes I am ” she says.
While he hugs her,she looks out the window.. there he was..standing beside the tree..the trees that had eyes…and the shadow that isn’t a man.

And then he and it was gone..
“I am  okay now”






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