Once again, I have risen from internal darkness to witness the death of another night and the birth of another day, one teeming with potential.
Truth be told, I could be a hero of the day, or a pathetic fool. The choice, as always, is entirely mine.
And to be brutally honest, it is far too early for such ponderings; my body cries out for rest but its pleas must be ignored in favor of fulfilling my role in a scheme far grander than any my mind could ever conceive of. I am but a humble servant to millions of travelers whose faces quickly become a blur in my memory.
To them, I am a ghost. A figure in the corner of their eyes. An anonymous minion whose sole purpose is to ferry their belongings through the labyrinth that is a grand hotel.
But spare me your pity, my friends.
My anonymity is a gift from Mistress Fate, one I use to its fullest advantage.
“Watch out for the quiet ones.” A lesson I remember well from my childhood. “Don’t eat the yellow snow.”, was another that springs to mind.
(The Seventies were weird.)
But I digress, as I am prone to do – you cannot fight your nature, kids – and so we must return to form, by examining the travels of a stranger, one of many.
A man, his step ragged and labored, wanders past my desk. His face speaks volumes; he rubs his bloodshot eyes and seeks to rejoin the land of the living.
But it is not to be.
His body remains under the thrall of Morpheus. He is plagued by dreams, or perhaps the same seemingly-endless dream, who can say for certain?
He rests his body against the stone walls outside as his weathered hands, calloused form a lifetime of labor, fumble in pockets. Soon, a metallic fire-starter emerges and a man made death stick is set ablaze. He draws a long breath in and within a moment, exhales white smoke. He stares into the cloud as it quickly disperses.
What does he see?
Friends vanished and gone?
A lifetime wasted?
I can only speculate.
His thoughts are his own. I am but a ghost in the corner of his eye. A voyeur. A watcher. And now it its time to assume my duties and retrieve the belongings of yet another group of travelers.
And so I bid you farewell. For now, at least.
We shall meet again, in the brief lifetime of yet another day.
As for this day, I beseech you, my friends, live it well. Make it worthy of the halls of mankind’s collective memory.
Do that for me, won’t you?