Jackson Van Hiel lay in his bed, staring the ceiling, listening the machines gently whirring and beeping away, recording every vital sign he had and relaying it directly to the nurses station at the end of the hall.
Suddenly, there was silence. Jackson turned his had and saw the monitors were blank, his heartbeat gone, blood pressure gone. It struck him as odd. Footsteps came pounding along the corridor. Someone stood by his bed, cold hands grabbing at his face turning it back to the ceiling. His world went black.
I'm dying. He thought, and then suddenly he was back in the room. Only not quite, everything was faint, translucent. He stood from the bed and look down on himself. His gown removed, his pale chest being hastily shaved to make way for the mini depth charges that were about to be launched.
"We have come for you" A deep voice grumbled from behind him. He spun around and in the door stood the reaper. Only it wasn't the hooded fellow of folklore, but rather a bear.
The shaggy beast stood in the doorway, the long claws of his rear legs drug into the linoleum flooring, while his front paws were folded over each other, he was leaning forward resting on the handle of a giant sledgehammer, the head of which rested on the floor before him.
"Will you follow or must you be lead?" The beast asked, its brown eyes flared with subdued rage, his breaths heavy and smelled of decay.
"Who are you?" Jackson stammered, as he took a step backwards, passing through the bed.
"I wouldn't so that if I were you." A high pitched voice wept from beside him.
Jackson jumped and moved backwards even further, and in an instant the bear snatched the hammer and raised it over his shoulder striding into the room.
"Stand still man, for God's sake" The voice wept, now almost uncontrollably. Jackson looked and saw a crocodile, its eyes red and swollen from the blood tears that fell from them. "He means it. Just stay still and listen to him, you can decide your own fate." The crocodile pleaded, its face one of exquisite pain and sorrow.
"Who are you?" Jackson asked, turning in disbelief towards the wailing reptile.
"No!!!!!" It called out, screaming with fright that could be nothing buy genuine.
It was too late, the bear raised the hammer even higher and swung it with all of its grizzly strength. The head whistled through the air and collided with Jackson's ankles, shattering the bones and forcing them out of the skin the other side. He collapsed to the floor clutching his broken right foot.
"You should have stayed still. Oh you should have stayed still" The crocodile wailed, as the bear raised his hammer once again and brought it crushing down on the other ankle, shattering it and leaving it flat against the floor.
Jackson sat bolt upright, the pain immense, while all around him doctors and nurses were scrambling around to bring him back from the peaceful sleep that had taken him.
Without saying another word, the bear grabbed him by the head, claws sinking into his skull, one popping his eyeball. The lumbering animal turned and walked out of the door, dragging the crippled soul behind him, leaving the crocodile in the centre of the room wailing like a widow whose last child has passed, leaving her all alone in the world.