"Lover, there will be another one
Who'll hover over you beneath the sun
Tomorrow see the things that never come
When you see me
Fly away without you
Shadow on the things you know
Feathers fall around you
And show you the way to go
It's over, it's over."
Neil Young/Birds

"Now let the music keep our spirits high
And let the buildings keep our children dry
Let creation reveal it's secrets by and by
By and by--
When the light that's lost within us reaches the sky"
Jackson Browne/Before the Deluge

He could hear Jan calling him in the background, begging him to get up, to not let him win. But it was like a dream or an echo from far away. His thoughts turned to his life and all he had lived through. He thought about all his brothers and sisters and how much he loved them. Yeah, he figured he did live a good life after all. He had no regrets. He never hurt a soul, in fact he went out of his way to help whenever and wherever he could. He couldn't even count how many charities he had given his time for, if they needed him he was there.

Yes, even in the end he did his best and in a way he won. If Jan can get through the door when it appears then he knew Simon wouldn't bother her anymore. After all, if he was dead then there would be no chance for him to have a child with Jan. It will break the cycle. He looked up at Jan who was cowered in the corner. He reached out his hand to her and she grabbed it and kissed it, her tears fell over his fingers like rain. Suddenly a bright flash appeared against the wall in front of them. It was the light door, her light door and it beckoned her to it. A voice came into his head and said "you can come through also, we have made it for both of you!" but he ignored it. Jan wouldn't let go of his hand. "Go" he begged her wordlessly as he began to slip away. "Go NOW" he let her hand slip from his, the pain of losing himself to Simon’s will and the pain of setting her free unbearable now. The sensation of the demons hand grew stronger, nearly pressing Phil through the floor. Simon looked nervous but victorious as he sapped the life out of his victim. The pull from the tunnel was stronger than Phil could ever remember it being but Jan was still holding fast and not going.

"Damn you, come on already… DIE." Simon was getting very frustrated at how long it was taking to finish him off. Something inside of Phil was still holding on, still not willing to let go. He was pulling back. The wind was like a hurricane in the room now, deafening and building in strength. He looked into Simon's dead eyes and gave him the weakest of smiles. "Can't do it, can you?" his voice hoarse and barely a whisper, "Losing your touch, Simon?" Angered more than he could ever remember being, Simon placed his other hand on him also and tugged as hard as he could with all his strength to win the last bit of spirit that Phil possessed. For a split second he almost won. Phil felt the extra effort Simon was exerting on him, felt the power in his hands taking away the final bits of himself. As he saw it slipping away he heard Jan one more time begging for him to stay with her, she was frightened, she was afraid to be alone. He knew that if he let Simon win she would be his next victim. He had to get her into that tunnel before he relinquished his life to this monster. He wasn't going to let her down again. So, he pulled back and he pulled back hard. Simon was almost red with exertion and had all but used up all his strength trying to break Phil. "This just isn't worth it." Simon cursed to himself, sliding his hands off of his body, rubbing them together and backing away. "Jan," he said in his most seductive voice, a voice that she remembered, "come with me instead. I won't leave you alone like he did. I won't betray you, take my hand." Simon began walking toward her. She stared at him, his voice was oddly comforting and he didn't look all that threatening now. She began to reach out her hand…

Part 37