Death Unlit

“Red, I’m dying, I can feel it. I don’t want to die.”

“Hang in there Wyatt, I’ll drag you out of here if I have to.”

“There’s no way you can survive with me like this.”

“I can, I won’t leave you here.”

“No Red, stop. Just stop.”

“But we’re almost there.”

“No, and you know it. Look all I ask is to let me die here.”

“I can’t.”

“Just let me die here and help me with a smoke. Can you do that for me?”

“You can have as many smokes as you want when we are free.”

“No goddamn it Red, give me a smoke right here and let me die and go.”

There were sirens in the distance and barking.

“They’re close. That smoke Red.”

Red fumbled for a cigarette. He gave Wyatt one and took another.

Wyatt placed the cigarette in his mouth and held it between his lips.

Red’s eyes widened.

“What? Are they here?”

Red stayed quiet.

“What Red?”

“I don’t have a lighter.”

“Red, I can’t move anymore. Forget the smoke and go.”

“No, I have to light it for you.”

Red picked up rocks and sticks and tried friction and tried making sparks.

“Wyatt, I’m trying hold on.”

“Leave it Red.”

Red kept trying desperately to make a spark using two rocks on hastily collected tinder.

Helicopters whirred in the distance.

Minutes passed.

“Fuck, fuck, fuck.” Red’s hands shook and continuously dropped the rocks.

“Aha! Wyatt I got it.”

A tiny spark lit the tinder and Red lit his cigarette.

“Here Wyatt, here!”

Red looked at Wyatt, his cigarette was on his chest and his mouth wide open. He was dead.

Red placed the lit cigarette on Wyatt’s mouth and held his nose closed.

“I’m sorry,” he said.

He ran.

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