by thefourpartland

Marcus went blind on Wednesday. Deaf on Thursday. Friday he lost the ability to taste. Saturday, scents no longer appealed, and Sunday, he could no longer feel even the breath of the wind. Monday, they all came back.

He still worked the full forty hour week, of course. Hardest on Monday and Tuesday, when he could see. Memorize everything he could before Tuesday midnight, and then use Braille the rest of the week, typing away in blissful silence until Monday rolled around.

Thursday and Friday, he was the most productive person in the office. It’s amazing how much you can get done without even the possibility of being distracted.

There were drawbacks, of course. His wife cheated on him, twice a week. Thursday and Friday, between noon and two. Sunday he had to lay in bed, eating nothing. Too much risk otherwise.

It also meant he could never see his children play sports as they grew up, or spend time with them on the weekend. Marcus cried over that, when he thought no one was looking.

Someday, he was sure he’d find out what the affliction of his meant. Doctors certainly didn’t know, they just waved their hands. Oh, they’d been helpful at first, trying every cure and treatment they could conceive. But if you heard of a product with a 99% success rate, well, Marcus was that 1%. Everything failed on him. So he accepted life and moved on. Mostly.

It was Wednesday again. Blindness had struck, as it always did, at midnight Tuesday night. Today though, he hadn’t gone into work. Marcus wanted to experiment. So he shot himself. Dead, of course. No reason to do things poorly. As for what he found, well, he had a hard time telling anyone. But the corpse did have a smile on its face.


  1. Louise Broadbent on 03.25.2011

    I like this. There are a couple of typos but other than that it’s great. One question: does he know his wife’s having an affair? I think you should clarify that he doesn’t, otherwise there are all these issues with him just accepting/ ignoring it, you know? Love the doctor thing – all I ever get from doctors is ‘wait and see if it goes away on its own’ or ‘here have some antibiotics’. Awesome ending.

    Nice one.

  2. Icy Sedgwick on 03.25.2011

    Really interesting premise, and neat the way you wrapped it all up.

  3. Joely Black on 03.25.2011

    A fascinating premise, that you could easily expand into a longer story. It does work, however, as it is. And the ending is a great slap in the face.

  4. Steve Green on 03.25.2011

    A really interesting and unusual concept James, and it leaves one wondering just what he did find in death.

  5. The Four Part Land on 03.25.2011

    @Louise Fixed the typos. And he does know, and is ignoring it. It’s one of the reasons he felt free to experiment, because he knows his wife and kids have someone to take care of him.

    @Icy Thanks. Had to bludgeon my brain to make it work this morning. First time writing in three weeks was a tough one.

    @Joely Twisting endings seems to be something I love doing. I tend not to expand stories though, there’s already so much on my plate writing wise that I don’t need to add more to it.

    @Steve Good to see you round again. As for what he found, well, that’s up to the reader. 🙂

  6. Sam Adamson on 03.25.2011

    A an interesting idea, and very well done. Judging by the second-to-last paragraph you’ve met my doctors! I do like the ending, but imagining what he found is going to bug the life out of me for days, you do realise that? 😉

  7. Alison Wells on 03.25.2011

    Really great idea and I like the way the story flows and the great examples of how it affected him. You could indeed get an awful lot of mileage out of this which is why in a way I didn’t want him to die in the end, I want him to find devious ways around everything and be able to achieve something no-one else could.

  8. Deanna Schrayer on 03.25.2011

    I know that maybe it shouldn’t have, but that ending surprised me, which makes for a great story. 🙂

  9. Emma Newman on 03.25.2011

    Oooh, I really love this one. I’m a sucker for really bizarre things being described in calm terms, it makes the weirdness even sharper. Nicely done sir x

  10. The Four Part Land on 03.25.2011

    @Sam Good, I’m glad it got into your head 😉

    @Alison I’m not sure I could carry it off for a whole story. Much prefer stories that are nice and short for something like this.

    @Deanna You were surprised one of my characters had a twist ending and died? You’ve been here before, haven’t you? 😛

    @Emma Glad to see you back over here 🙂 Calmly bizarre is certainly a style I like writing. It’s fun 🙂

  11. Deanna Schrayer on 03.25.2011

    Yea, that was rather silly wasn’t it? 🙂

  12. The Four Part Land on 03.26.2011

    Just a touch, yes 😉

  13. Raven Corinn Catluk on 03.25.2011

    Color me curious about what he found. Dig it.

  14. Lara Dunning on 03.25.2011

    Was surprised by the end, but I guess if that was me it would cross my mind too or find myself in a contract with the devil.

  15. Adam B on 03.26.2011

    An intriguing premise and very well executed. Like Emma said, the mundane description makes it all the more weirder and freakier. Cool effect.
    Adam B @revhappiness

  16. The Four Part Land on 03.26.2011

    @Raven The joy of being an author means I don’t have to know. I think finding out would ruin the fun in some ways.

    @Lara I was writing it thinking that Marcus wasn’t really dying, so much as going to find out what the hell was going on and why he’d been given an affliction that wasn’t natural.

    @Adam Thanks for that 🙂 First time writing in three weeks, so I was glad it came out decently. Kind of like my home decoration story.

  17. L.M. Stull on 03.26.2011

    Well, everyone knows how much I love sick and twisted tales such as these. I enjoyed the rather cool and relaxed demeanor from which the story was told. And, although the tone of the story was relaxed, for me, there was also a strong undertone of despair bleeding through. This poor man and his many afflictions.

    As for what he found in death, in my mind, he found happiness and peace, along with sight, sound, taste and feeling. All the things his life did not offer him on a daily basis.

    Bravo! it is always refreshing when an author writes a story in such a way as to allow the reader to make their own decisions about the character and its choices.

    As usual, nicely done!

  18. justin on 03.28.2011

    Trying to think of the name for the condition where someone can go blind for no apparent reason-but can’t. Anyway, I was thinking he suffered from multiple versions of this. great premise for a story, and i agree that your dead pan style makes it all the more believable and effective.

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