Andrew took a window seat then made himself comfortable for the long ride ahead. When the train started gliding along the rails, he leaned his head against the window and closed his eyes only to rest them for a moment. Without realizing it, Andrew fell into the comforting clutches of sleep…
Stars filled Andrew’s vision as his eyes shot open. Pain singed the left side of his face.
“What the fuck!” he screamed and turned ready to fight.
His bowels nearly released at the sight of the assailant. A man dressed in the charred remnants of a conductor’s uniform stood above him. Smoke rose from his scorched and blistered skin. The iris of his eyes burned the brightest blue in the universe.
The Conductor tried to speak through cauterized lips and only succeeded in guttural groans. He rolled his eyes with annoyance and held up a single taloned finger signaling Andrew to wait and then pointed out the window.
Andrew turned away and then his bowels actually released.
Buildings. Cars. Streets. Trees. Everything was aflame. The air was clouded with sooty black and gray smoke. Ashes filled the air like a perpetual rain of filth. Andrew trembled wishing to scream but didn’t in fear of angering the Conductor.
The Conductor tugged on his shoulder turning Andrew’s attention back to him. He grumbled through sealed lips, grimaced with anger, and then drove the talon into his mouth and slit his lips open. The Conductor growled in agony as the sensitive burned skin split apart and blood darker than obsidian trickled to the flood and boiled.
Andrew’s heart went cold and dropped into the pit of his stomach. Animal instinct took over and it was fight or flight. Flight won.
The other passengers did not stir. Their blank, lifeless eyes paid no mind to the inferno raging out the window or the man yelling for them to run. A tumble over a briefcase a few inches too far into the isle showed him exactly why.
Attempting to break his fall, Andrew reached out for an arm rest and instead bumped into a small boy. The boy did not fuss or move or even turn his gaze to him. Ashes filled the train car as the boy disintegrated. The passengers next to him began turning to dust as well. Andrew chocked as he inhaled them into his lungs.
Andrew shrieked and attempted to open the emergency windows only to find that they had been melted shut. Touching it scalded the skin of his hands.
A deafening blast filled the air and the train abruptly stopped and the doors slammed open to a platform that wasn’t consumed with flames. Andrew ran out and sprinted down the empty platform hearing the voice of the Conductor bellowing behind him.
“Last stop,” The Conductor garbled. The doors slammed shut and the platform exploded into a hellish nightmare of fire as the train disappeared down the tracks.
Andrew stood alone on the platform wondering what he meant…