Cold Wind by Kazel Wood

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Cold Wind by Kazel Wood
Illustration by Sue Babcock

The cold wind blows into our house and makes me tremble. No matter how many coats I wear it still makes my hair stand on end. The cold wind can’t be stopped.

“Caesar, please just go to school,” my father says.

“I can’t. I don’t feel well. I’m worried I’ll make everyone else sick,” I say.

The cold wind makes my stomach grumble and churn. It makes my head weigh a ton and my thoughts turn against me.

“Caesar, have confidence in yourself,” my brother says.

“Why?” I say.

“So that you can enjoy life more. Don’t let everyone else control you.”

The cold breeze makes me have so little power. It grinds my will to dust. It shatters my self-esteem.

“Caesar, you are a smart lad, please just have faith in yourself,” my grandfather says.

“Grandfather, my grades disagree with that,” I say.

“Grades are a stupid way of showing intelligence.”

“But grandfather the school says you aren’t smart if you have bad grades.”

“Child, when you have faith in your abilities and put work into your school your grades will rise.

Remember, child, you are always smart in one way or another.”

The cold wind makes me shake and shiver. It causes me to cower and seek shelter. Would a wall keep it out?

“Derek, I’m worried about Caesar,” my mother says.

“He’ll be fine just give him time,” my father says.

“But he doesn’t have any close friends.”

“Honey, he will be alright.”

“If you say so.”

The cold wind whittles me down to my bare essence. The wall I built doesn’t stop the wind, it just stops people from getting in.

“Honey we should take him to a therapist,” my mother says.

“I agree,” my father says.

The cold wind is getting stronger every day. It might carry me away one day. It can sense my weakness. It howls and screams with laughter.

“Hello, Caesar, my name is Marcus,” the therapist says.

“Hello, Marcus,” I say, forcing a smile.

“Now, I hear you’ve been having some issues.”

“Well, I have some problems but none that I can’t handle.”

The cold wind pushes me closer and closer to the abyss below. It churns and growls. It knows it’s winning. I cannot stand strong. The wind is too powerful.

“Why haven’t you entered the abyss?” Marcus asks.

“I love my family too much,” I say.

“That’s good. Now then why do you feel close to this abyss?”

“I feel close to the wall I built.”

“Can you break the wall?”

The cold wind is scared. I can hear its moans and cries. It pushes me harder than ever. Trying to push me into the abyss. I am so tempted to let it. I want to see what is in the abyss.

“Caesar, I am here for you just tell me what is wrong,” Marcus says.

“I don’t know what’s wrong, I just can’t tell anymore,” I say.

“Well, then I can’t help you as much as I would want to.”

“Well, then I apologize for the inconvenience I have caused.”

“Caesar, you aren’t an inconvenience to me, you are a mystery to me.”

“A mystery?”

“You clearly love everyone you meet, but you are incapable of loving yourself. Why?”

“I don’t see what there is for me to love anymore.”

The cold wind has taken me and forced me into the abyss. I caught the edge. If I let go, the cold wind can’t reach me. I can feel the abyss and how it greets me with open arms, but if I let go I lose my family.

“Don’t do it, Caesar, please,” my mother says.

I can see her tears run down her face as she stares at me about to fall into the abyss.

“Caesar, I love you now please don’t do it,” my father says.

He holds my mother and brother. His warm hugs always protected me from the cold wind, but they were fleeting and temporary protection.

The cold wind pushes at my hands try to make me let go. Maybe I should just let go and get it over with.

“Caesar, please just come back to us we can help you get through this,” my brother says.

We used to have so much fun playing games and chasing each other. That was before the cold wind found me.

The cold wind is egging me on. It howls with laughter. I see all these warm hands trying to pull me from the abyss. I see how they are all immune to the cold wind. How can they not feel the harshness of the wind?

“Caesar, I need you to help me solve the mystery,” Marcus says.

“What mystery?” I say, looking down from the building I’m on.

“The mystery of you.”

I see Marcus by my side in the abyss. He is holding onto me protecting me from the cold wind. The cold wind howls in anger.

“Okay, but what about everyone else,” I say

“Ignore them, they don’t choose how you live,” Marcus says.

With that, the cold wind dwindles into a light breeze, leaves me seeking new prey.


BIO: Kazel Wood is a college student at Full Sail University (Orlando, Florida) studying Creative Writing for Entertainment. Kazel hopes one day to write for video games, TV, film, or other forms of entertainment. His home is in Seattle, Washington.