Bernard and the Shadowy Figure

Below, you’ll find a very short story. I hope you enjoy!



Shadowy Figure: Oh, I think you’re wrong Bernard. I think you underestimate them.

Bernard: You can’t fault me for having faith.

Shadowy Figure: Perhaps not. I truly hope that I’m wrong Bernard, for their sake.


<<Setting Change>>

The scene changes to a street level view of a busy city street. There are many people bustling across the scene on this chilly spring morning.


<<8th Floor Office, Window facing the street>>

The nameplate on the desk reads Gary Denver. Behind the desk Gary is lifting a coffee mug to his lips. He is staring out over the street. He appears to be studying the late arrivers. He’s always early.  He’s always there before everyone else. Gary follows his gaze back down to the sidewalk pedestrians.



The scene seems perfectly normal. Until a man, stumbling and bumping into the others as he moves through the crowd, begins to crumple to his knees in front of a bench. After a brief shudder, he sprawls to the ground with his hands sliding out from under him. His hands come away from his body drenched in red.



Gary slowly pulls his coffee away from his lips which are creasing into a look of concern.  He resigns to watch to make sure that the man gets help but doesn’t move from the window or make any effort to retrieve his phone.



The masses of people divide around the fallen man and converge on the other side. No one stops; they all just make as much effort as possible to avoid the man and still stay on the sidewalk. Everyone pretends to not notice him with an equal amount of effort exerted to avoid him.



Gary watches with a stoic sureness, the look on his face shows that he is absolutely certain that there is one Good Samaritan among them. Though, as Gary continues to watch it is clear that his worry is betraying his certainty.



Several minutes have passed and the color is draining from the fallen man’s face. He is clearly dying. The crowd continues to weave around him as though he were an island in a stream.



Gary’s resolve weakens. He leaves the window and heads for the phone on his desk in disgust with the people below. He dials 911 and speaks to the operator and hangs up after giving the location.

Gary returns to the window and looks below. He no longer sees the man below. The crowd is no longer parting. He relaxes and assumes that someone had in fact called for emergency services. The paramedics must have arrived and carried the man away while he was on the phone. The look on his face shows that he believes all is well. He slumps into his office chair, a disgusted looking expression sliding on to his face. He calls a friend and complains of the audacity of the people on the street.


<<Bernard and the Shadowy Figure Conversation>>

Bernard: I admit it, you were right and I had such hopes for them.

Shadowy Figure: I never thought you’d admit defeat. Is it time then?

Bernard: <gloomily> Yes. You’re free to pass judgment. They are clearly not what I hoped they’d be.



I hope that you enjoyed it, I welcome your comments.