Day By Day- Round 8

Clay shot out of bed, and threw open the door to his bedroom. Apollo jumped back in surprise.

“We’re going on an adventure!” Clay had him by the shoulders.

“What?”

“We, are going on an adventure.”

“Why?”

“Because I’m tired of living the simple life of an everyday man.”

“You’re an astronaut.”

“But alas, I long to free myself from this burden you and I call an apartment.” Apollo frowned.

“What did you do?”

Clay stared, mouth agape. “You offend me.”

“I’m serious.”

“Oh, well… there’s this cool motel and I thought we could check it out?”

Apollo furrowed his brow. “You seem nervous.”

“Why do you say that?”

“Your nose is twitching.”

“Oh really?”

Apollo frowned. “But you seem to already know that, huh?”

Clay swallowed, then tried to look confused. “Why would you think that?”

Apollo opened his mouth to respond while checking his phone and swore.

“We’ll talk about this later. Don’t run away.”

“If I was going to run away I would be gone by now.”

“…Sure,” Apollo left and Clay made the necessary calls, then sighed.

Apollo probably thinks I’m insane. Great…

I need to think of a plan to get him to leave… But he won’t believe any lies I try to tell him.

Clay realized what he had to do and sighed.

. . .

Lunch rolled around and Apollo opened the door to the apartment.

“I feel like I’m a kid again but not in a good way,” Clay remarked.

“Good,” Apollo sat across from Clay. “Now spill the beans.”

“…Alright,” Clay took a deep breath. “So I have this thing where every time I die I come back to life, and Fulbright’s trying to kill me, and I tried to run away, but then you died and I don’t want you to die so please c’mon.” Apollo gave Clay a strange look, then sighed.

“You’re insane.”

“I swear I’m not.”

“Then how did I ‘die’?”

“I dunno. I died before I could find out.”

“I’m not going to indulge your delusions.”

“C’mon, I’m telling you that you’re gonna die and you’re just gonna ignore it?”

“Yes, I have to work.”

“I’m going to punch you.”

“I’ve been told I have that affect-” Clay slugged Apollo’s right temple, and he fell to the ground like a sack of sand. Clay didn’t even feel bad about it.

Apollo was strapped into the passenger seat of Clay’s car.

Now I just have to hope he won’t thrash about violently when he wakes up.

He shook that thought out of his head and pulled out his phone.

“Hello, Mr. Wright?”

“Who is this?” Phoenix asked.

“My name’s Clay Terran, I’m Apollo’s roommate.”

“Is something wrong?”

“Apollo got sick, and I thought I should tell you.”

“Okay tell Apollo I said I hope he feels better.”

“I will,” Clay hung up and started driving.

He had been driving for a few hours before Apollo woke up.

“You bastard.”

“I said I was going to punch you.”

“I didn’t think you’d actually do it!”

“When have I not made good on my promises?”

Apollo crossed his arms and sighed. “How close were you to stabbing me while I was asleep?”

“Why would I do that? The whole reason we’re checking into a hotel is so we don’t die.”

“How are you so nonchalant?”

Clay shrugged. “I guess that’s what happens when you die like, a million times.”

“You’re not like, I dunno, emotionally scarred or something?”

“I don’t think so, I mean, I guess it’s a little jarring the first couple of times, but it’s not that bad.”

“I’d never be able to live with… dying. I feel like that’s an oxymoron.”

“Probably.”

“I don’t know how you’re still sane. I mean, knowing you could die at any moment.”

“I try not to think about it.”

The two sat in silence for a few minutes until Apollo asked, “so what all’s happened?”

“What do you mean?”

“Like, when you wake up after… y’know. What’s happened in each of those… time periods?”

“Well I died.”

“Duh.”

“You’ve died in some of them.”

“You said something about that.”

“Fulbright killed you.”

“Every time?”

“Er, there was this one time we got in a car wreck, but I don’t know if you died.” Apollo sank lower in his seat.

“Fulbright kills us huh? Who woulda thunk it?”

“Well, technically I’ve never met the guy.”

“Then just take my word for it.”

“Can do.”

. . .

Clay’s car beeped at him an hour or so later. “Huh, I guess I need gas.”

“How far are we from the hotel?” Apollo asked.

“Not too far I think.” Clay stepped out. It was dark and the gas station was illuminated with bright lights. He walked into the station. “Can I have twenty dollars in gas for pump number…” He looked out the window. “7?”

“Sure,” the clerk pushed some buttons on their console and handed Clay a receipt.

“Thanks,” Clay pulled out the pump and stuck it in his car.

“Hey,” He looked to see a knife pointed at him.

Shit.

“Give me all your money.”

“I have a passenger in my car. He’ll call the police.”

“I don’t care, give me your money.”

“I don’t have any cash on me.”

“You’re lyin’.”

“I’m really not.”

He’s going to kill me…

“I’m gonna say it again. Give me all your money.”

“And I’ll tell you one more time I don’t have anything!”

The man lunged, the knife hitting Clay in the stomach. He grabbed Clay’s wallet and threw him to the ground. Apollo got out of the car.

“Hey!” He went to run after the man, but noticed Clay. “Oh my god.”

Clay smiled as Apollo knelt next to him. “I think it’s my time.”

“Don’t say that,” Apollo propped his friend up.

“I’m gonna come back.”

“But what about me?! You’re leaving me here!”

“Aw, c’mon-” Clay coughed. “Don’t be so selfish.”

“I don’t care if I’m being selfish! You’re not gonna die on me!” Apollo was tearing up. “Please.”

“It’s going to be okay.”

“No, it’s not!”

“You’re being dramatic.” Apollo wrapped Clay in a hug.

“You’re not leaving me.”

“C’mon Apollo, your clothes are covered in blood.” Clay could feel his consciousness fade as his eyes grew heavier.

“Clay,” Apollo shook him. “Clay!”

No response.

“Please don’t die…”

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