by Ayanda Maseko
ad astra per aspera
“To the stars through hardship”
Title Card: V. LIGHTHOUSE
INT. CATHEDRAL – NIGHT
CLONE023 walks out of a shadowed entrance hall. Each liturgical step, follows a grave and contemplative droning.
His footsteps glide with the rhythm of a weakened heartbeat, slow but measured.
Floating down the aisle, his bare feet guided by bouquets of candles and flowers.
Scattered down each pew, several silhouettes sit facing an empty pulpit.
CLONE023 stands before the pulpit, briefly lifting his head in silent prayer.
He lowers his head , gazing at an arrangement of long-melted candles and wilting wild flowers.
He bends down, placing a bouquet of flowers among the rest.
CLONE023 turns to take his seat with the silhouetted figures, closing his eyes.
Candles all along the aisle are extinguished, one by one. The drone reaches a crescendo with the extinguishing of the last flame.
CLONE023’s eyes shoot open in fear and horror. His chest violently heaves, desperately he gasps for breath.