Магистр по охране окружающей среды (M.Env.Sc.). Отец четырех детей. В свободное время пишет то, что считает ненаписанным. Сразу на трёх языках: латышском, русском и английском.
Три сборника короткой прозы изданы в печатном виде: два на латышском, один на русском. Десятки публикаций в периодике в Латвии, четыре рассказа напечатаны в России. Множество сетевых публикаций и успехов в сетевых конкурсах.
Master of Environmental Science (M.Env.Sc.). Father of four children. In leisure time writing on what considers not written before. In three languages at once: Latvian, Russian and English.
Three compilations of stories have been published in printing: two in Latvian, one in Russian. Tens of publications in periodicals in Latvian, four stories printed in Russia. A lot of web publications, and success in internet competitions.
Fiction “The 9/11’s Widow”
Johanna is drinking whiskey. With ice. By herself. Alone. In the physical realm. In the mental – by themselves. With John.
She is marking her demise. Well, that of them both. Although her flesh still continues to exist for twenty years since that fatal day, and also John didn’t leave this earth on that day either, Johanna considers September 11 of the new millennium as the day of their final exit. Brought about by John. In whose guilt she grows slowly tired of disbelieving. As the last one worldwide.
On the screen in front of her the same apocalyptic scenes flicker as always on this anniversary. Plane after plane pierces the skyscrapers, one after the other. Explosions rumble. Disbelieving crowds stare into the sky.
John believed it. That something similar would strike from a clear sky – not on a screen, but in reality.
She clinks with John’s young, smiling face. Her tumbler rings against the glass over the portrait. Johanna smirks bitterly, as she does every year, catching herself with the thought that she is striking her drink against the face of her love, better to have a photograph of John with a mug in hand. But none exists. John didn’t drink. Just like his young wife.
She glances at the grey ghost in the mirror. No, it’s been ages since she was last a partner to John in his smiling forty seven, effervescent with health and happiness, reminiscent of a thirty-five-year-old with the first saucy touch of salt-and-pepper at the temples.
Two skyscrapers are already burning across the screen, throwing billows of black, deadly poisonous fumes into the air. As always on this day, Johanna tries to believe it. For long years, she only has lived with this belief. With John’s belief. Which, true, he rescinded himself. But she – never. Desperately she clings to it. Even though, by degrees, of course, her rational mind is gaining the advantage.
The airplanes are guided by terrorists, who have completed some kind of training in order to violently wrest the planes from their pilots and fly directly into buildings, thus spitting onto the entire nation, even though they themselves, of course, shall perish. In the first moments after that cursed day, this kind of narrative was even examined in all seriousness by the global media, but unanimously and irreversibly refuted by experts in the most various fields. Without mentioning the absurdity of the entire world’s conspiracy against the peaceful American nation, it would not be implementable even technically. One cannot, see, simply learn to fly a clumsy passenger aircraft directly into a narrow and low – by aviation standards – building, without the aid of dispatchers and airport navigation systems. This is ridiculous, just like trying to kick a soccer ball into a basket net. Such things can only be imagined by a teenaged mind, saturated by blockbusters, not an Air Force general, an experienced test pilot!
Johanna pours for herself and clinks with John’s smile again. But – look, he responds, it’s on target! And truly: in this moment, on the screen a third plane hits the hollow copper goddess on the island. However, she is unbendable: the liner shatters into smithereens, while the woman merely drops her torch. The Statue of Liberty – this is not some hive of offices, it is our nation itself, strong and unconquerable.
There is some truth in the events on the screen. That day, terrorists seized four planes and, either on their own or by threatening the pilots, guided the civil airliners to various airports. Their demands at the time were not clear, their landing and the subsequent call for negotiations should be awaited. And then the usual practice – easy and professional capture, no fuss, no victims. But the airplanes first somehow swerved from any comprehensible direction, like towards the city centre. Which weren’t particularly surprising, either, especially if they were guided by the inexperienced terrorists themselves. However, then irrational reports came from supposed spies, as if the terrorists were intending to ram Manhattan: the skyscrapers and Liberty.
Johanna will never know what happened among the higher powers. According to the unofficial version, many leaders fell into panic, not John alone. But it was John who personally gave the order. Not just unilaterally, without discussion, no: specifically contrary to the order from above – not to allow civilian victims under no circumstances.
John allowed. With a single one of his indisputable general’s words. Easily, like a summer’s breeze.
At the time, it seemed that this horrifying error would go down in eternal history as the most terrible crime of the twenty first century. But nothing of the sort: now a whole generation has grown up having heard not a thing about 9/11. Which is entirely natural: it isn’t as if the nation takes pride in the event and speaks loudly around the world of this tragedy and shame, already partially forgotten.
At that time, the entire military leadership crash-landed. Some were separated from their office and epaulettes, some – from their liberty. Both those, who didn’t monitor from the top, and those, who blindly followed at the bottom. Everything happened swiftly and decisively: not the civil way, but John’s way. The ultimate penalty was handed down by the tribunal only to him and the four direct executors, who had dirtied their own hands on the bloody firing controls. But they were later pardoned, because, in truth, the entire catastrophe was directed by one single person: John Hayes, by willfully breaking the chain from superior command to inferior execution. Simply with a word, without bloodying himself.
The Hollywood nightmare on the screen is flaring up. Not a couple of hundreds, no: just rescuers are perishing by hundreds against the background of the desperately determined grimace of the main hero – who, of course, remains unthreatened. But the rest of the cannon fodder is expended by thousands – some falling from the heights, some crushed beneath ceilings, some burned alive…
In the course of the investigation, the most unpleasant suspicions about the preschool behaviour of the Air Force’s high command were gradually confirmed. Each and every one of them admitted to their error and their guilt. And they were sorry – starting from the spies who brought shame to their service, and ending with General Hayes, who had shamed the entire nation. And all of them begged for pardon. Except for John. He didn’t beg.