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|MacGyver Online Forums > Library > Harry's Legacy Part Three|
|Posted by: MacsChick 15 March 2010 - 02:29 PM|
| I had some time today, so I thought I would go ahead and post this next part. This story is definitely something you have to pay attention to and read all the way through if you're going to understand the ending (which I haven't written but already have in mind). Enjoy!
Harry’s Legacy Part Three
In order to reestablish peace after such an unsettling incident, MacGyver distracted himself by continuing his restoration of the cabin, and by taking long, cleansing hikes. Some days he seemed to lose all concept of time, and the woods seemed to continue endlessly, stretching for miles beyond him without even the slightest indication of human civilization. He would eventually return to the cabin, invigorated and drenching in sweat, never feeling more alive and vital, all his tensions and concerns evaporated. It was during those times that he would pause and realize that not once had he stopped to rest from the taxing exertion of climbing steep hills in the high altitude, nor had he felt the typical human urge to eat, never once feeling the gnawing, desperate sensation of hunger after hours of his body expending energy. Nor did he feel thirsty, the burning dryness of the throat absent. He wondered how that could be, knowing that usually such a lengthy trek would require him to stop to replenish himself at least several times despite his excellent physical conditioning. He figured that perhaps he had stopped, he had eaten, and he had quenched his thirst, but that he just couldn’t remember doing so, the responses to his body’s needs automatic after so many years of wilderness and field training that he rarely thought about those actions while performing them.
Still, when he analyzed it further, he realized that he hadn’t taken any gear or accessories with him necessary for survival—no trail mix, no fishing pole, no canteen. It had just been him, alone in the woods, walking continuously. When he realized this it partly fascinated and partly worried him. He was a rational, practical man, and even he knew that there was no possible way a human body could survive as long as his had for days with lack of food and water. At the very least, he would have been starting to show signs of dehydration and starvation and all that accompanied those conditions, including fatigue. He would not feel as energized as he did at that moment, his flesh and his muscles tingling as if in a response of gratitude for all his movement.
While he continued to ponder this with a mixture of curiosity and fear, trying to determine whether he had taken care of his body’s basic biological needs, he noticed for the first time that the sun was setting. He also realized that he had been meaning to drive to the local grocery to call Pete from the payphone, but hadn’t done so for days. Every time he intended to, he somehow forgot and the opportunity was lost. He would have called from the cabin, but even though it had electricity and indoor plumbing, it had no phone, fitting with the reclusive life Harry had led, not wishing to communicate with the outside world, especially if it involved the painful memories of his family. MacGyver knew he was now leading a similar life, yet he still yearned for connection, no matter how minor. His phone call to Pete would have provided him with the human bond he so desired, yet every time he remembered to call it was too late. Slowly, he began to realize that he didn’t even know what day it was or how long he had been isolated.
Maybe this is it, he thought. Maybe I am losing my mind out here.
Or, perhaps he was reclaiming his sanity, living the way humans were supposed to live, free from the constraints of schedules and dates and assignments. He just wished he could be sure.
The voices returned, this time while he was in the cabin’s living room, simply strumming his guitar in the evening to soothe himself. He could hear their unintelligible murmurs and whispers even above the vibrations of the strings. Stopping, once again alert to a possible threat, he listened, trying to make sense of their meaning but having no success at doing so.
“Hello?” He called out, looking around the cabin. “Is someone here?”
Again he performed a thorough, detailed search around the cabin, and again he found nothing. It was maddening to him that he couldn’t find their source and it was disturbing that they returned when he was fully conscious and aware. No longer could he be certain that they were the product of a dream or hallucination. They were real.
“Who are you? What do you want?” He asked.
He caught a glimpse of a figure moving, a mere blurred outline, a shadow. In an instant it faded as quickly as it had appeared.
“Harry?” He asked, finding himself cringing after doing so, finding his situation absurd. What could he possibly be thinking, communing with the dead? He didn’t believe in ghosts. Yet, after what he had just experienced, perhaps it was possible that he could be more open to the idea. “Harry, are you here? Is that you? Please, answer me.”
Once again there was absolute silence, the voices and the brief appearance of the figure gone, leaving MacGyver once again with his uncertainties, his questions, and his doubts.
“Harry! Come on! I know that’s you! I know you’re around here somewhere! Come on, you stubborn old coot! Come out here and say something!” He shouted, hoping to goad the apparition into re-appearing, hoping to communicate with it. Instead, nothing happened.
Flopping down on the sagging, faded couch in the living room, MacGyver laughed to himself and shook his head in disbelief, rubbing his face with his hands in confusion and frustration.
“There’s no way this can be real,” he whispered.
He examined several theories in his mind—one, that he was indeed going mad, two, that he had ingested something that caused him to have vivid and powerful auditory and visual hallucinations, three, that the stress of his former life was the cause, and four—that perhaps ghosts from our pasts did exist after all. The last one he dismissed outright, stubbornly refusing to believe in the supernatural, even after his near-death experience. After all, he knew the brain was a complex organ, capable of producing the wildest fantasies imaginable yet somehow make them seem real. Even though he was not tired—he hadn’t felt the physical urge to sleep in what seemed like ages—he decided as an experiment to go to sleep and see if the voices and the ghostly images returned. Then he could know with certainty that it was indeed a dream. If nothing happened, he could move on to the next theory until he reached the last—and least probable—that of a haunting. It was pure scientific inquiry, detached and unemotional, as MacGyver preferred to approach it. He was tired of fear in his life, and one way to purge it and to keep him as sane as possible was to treat this mystery with some degree of intelligence instead of merely reacting as his instincts told him to—out of fear of the unknown.
Pete was standing, his back facing him, his head bowed in silent veneration. His surroundings seemed desolate, devoid of all life, the trees ashen, frail, and skeletal, almost spectral, their withering branches extending like bony fingers. MacGyver approached him quietly, not wanting to startle him.
“Pete?” He said gently, placing his hand on his shoulder.
Pete remained motionless and unresponsive, his head still bowed as if in deep prayer or contemplation.
“Pete, it’s Mac. Tell me what’s going on. What is this place? Why are we here?”
Still, Pete did not answer. He did not seem to acknowledge his presence at all.
“Can’t you hear me? Can’t you hear me at all?”
For the first time, MacGyver noticed that tears glistened in Pete’s profile. Tears of pain, grief, and bitter loss. He was overcome with emotion, having difficulty restraining himself.
“What happened? It’s all right—you know you can tell me. I’m here,” he said soothingly, rubbing Pete’s trembling shoulder.
It looked as if the distraught older man was about to say something, but he was unable to, choking on his tears.
“I don’t understand,” MacGyver said. “You know I won’t understand and won’t be able to help unless you tell me what happened.”
Sobbing loudly, Pete crouched to the barren ground, placing his hand on a flat, polished slab of stone. It didn’t take much imagination for MacGyver to realize that it was a gravestone. Even though Pete’s hand partially obscured the lettering etched into its surface, he could read enough of it to know it was his own.
To be continued…
|Posted by: ghostdoll 16 March 2010 - 07:18 PM|
Oh, how I love suspense stories that keep me in the edge of my seat while reading (and re-reading for I usually miss something the first time I read).
Wow. Intense. And now I'm wondering a lot of stuff!
Thanks for sharing your story, MacsChick. They always make my day!
|Posted by: Geekgirl 19 March 2010 - 12:47 PM|
| Please tell me it's just a dream and Mac's not really dead....it's a dream, right?
Really great writing. Like the story so far and can't wait to see how Spirit Mac makes it back to reality...assuming he's really not dead.
|Posted by: Karenskatz 24 March 2021 - 03:37 PM|
| [To be continued…]
I would very much like to see this story continued. It's getting very interesting and you left it on a clifhanger! Please give it a try!