Beautiful Tragedy

Jim Stitzel

I dabble a little in a lot of things — writing, webcomics, gaming, photography, web design, music, and more. I write code full-time and words in the gaps in between.


A child. Barely out of diapers. He stands stock still on the busy sidewalk as hundreds of grown-ups walk quickly past him.

The child stoops, plucking a key from a crack in the sidewalk, even though the crack isn't nearly large enough to accommodate such an object. He holds it up before his eyes, a wicked glint in his eyes. The key itself is onyx-black and jagged, like something conjured from a nightmare and carved from obsidian.

He steps off the sidewalk, directly into busy traffic. Somehow, he manages not to be struck by a racing vehicle. His tiny legs carry him to the center of the roadway. There are no angry horns, no shouts of fear or anger directed at him, no acknowledgement of this child standing where no child should be. He may as well not exist.

With a giggle like broken glass, he stoops once more, shoving the key into the asphalt of the street. The road boils around him as he vanishes in a puff of smoke, leaving behind him a ten-car pileup. The sound of his laughter lingers as the screams begin.


Comments (4 so far!)

ElshaHawk LoA

ElshaHawk LoA

So each of the keys is like a fate. (reading previous sequels) I like that they are all different ages and types of people. It seems so far that they all end in deaths... I wonder what happens if the key people all meet?

  • #2304 Posted 2 years ago
  • 0
Jim Stitzel

Jim Stitzel

At the very least, I've viewed them as key turning points (hyuk hyuk) in people's lives. Technically, the prequel to this one didn't end in death, just an unpleasant remainder of life. If I continue this series, I think I'd like to explore some fates that aren't quite so bleak.

  • #2305 Posted 2 years ago
  • 0
ElshaHawk LoA

ElshaHawk LoA

Ah, you are right, she just had haunting visions in the prequel. I like that "key turning points". :) Nice one! And there's the short story collection's title. Heh.

  • #2306 Posted 2 years ago
  • 0
Jim Stitzel

Jim Stitzel

Good call! :)

  • #2307 Posted 2 years ago
  • 0

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