If she only knew my secret.

“This is going to be awesome.” Lisa beams looking over her shoulder at me.

I love the glint in her blue almond shaped eyes in moments such as this. They dance with excitement, and a twinge of fear.

“How far do you think we can get?” I ask, pitching my voice to be heard over the wind that whips at our bulky overcoats.

Lisa reaches the edge of the skyscrapers roof and shrugs off her overcoat revealing a form fitting wingsuit. I love seeing the outline of her body. God she is fit. Only the bulk of her folded wings and propulsion unit mar what I consider perfection. I come up beside her and shrug off my own overcoat.

The overcoats hid our wingsuits as we left the automech closet and snuck up to the roof of the highest skyscraper in the world. The Amazon tower in Seattle.

Lisa pulls at her pony tail, tightening the tie that holds her blonde hair tight to her skull. “I think the minijets will give us another five or six kilometers,” she says, turning her back towards me while twisting in an effort to see her own pack.

“These are so cool,” she beams.

“They are,” I kiss her and don my helmet, “ready?”

“You bet,” she says, puts her helmet on, takes my hand and pulls me to the edge. As we leap into the clear Seattle sky, she yells, “We only live once!”

If she only knew my secret, I think as our wings deploy and carry us away from the Amazon tower.

I lost count of how many lives I have lived. More than nine, that is for sure…poor cats.

I am not immortal. I can die. I just chose to avoid it.

The worst part is starting over. Take Lisa. I really dig her. She is smart, fearless, B. E. A. utiful. Keeps herself in great shape, and sex is mind blowing…every time!

But, if something goes wrong with this dive, and the end is nigh, I lose her, and this life.

I start all over.

I could start as an infant, just out of the womb, or wake up in a toddler’s body. I always come back as a man. Even though I think, just one time, it would be fun to come back as a woman. You know, because they can have all the sex they want. But, in todays day and age, that is impolitic, so forget I mentioned it.

Most often it is as a newborn. And it sucks, because by the time I reach two or three years of age, all my memories have returned, and I must endure childhood as an adult…sort of. Nothing grates on my nerves more than having some woman, who thinks she is my mom say, “Listen mister, you won’t understand until you get older. Now just do as your told.”

To the best of my recollection, my first life started someplace in the iron age. Those were tough times. I died…well, my body died a lot. Starting over wasn’t so bad back then. Lessons learned and all that.

But now, I have lived this life for thirty-two years, and it has been great. Lisa and I have been doing crazy shit together for a decade now. I can see this going on for the rest of this body’s natural life. That is if we don’t kill ourselves first.

God, we do some crazy shit. This suit is untested. Wing suits are common, but these have small turbofans that more than double the distance we can fly. We think it might just give us a slim chance of escaping the authorities once we land. Most cities get pissed when you jump off their buildings.

That is the other beauty of being on this planet so long. If we do get caught, and we are issued a citation…big deal. Something about my vast years of knowledge and experience gives me the upper edge in business. I am loaded. So much so my money makes money for me. I wish I could transfer my money to my new me, but I never know whom, or where I will be. Hard to include someone in a will, when you don’t know who to bequeath it to.

At least I think its my lifetimes of experience that gives me the upper hand. As far as I know, I am still a normal human being. I just cheat death.

Lisa looks over at me, adjusts her glide path to get closer, and takes my hand. “Let’s go tiger,” she says over the radio, her voice echoing within my faceplate.

I nod and we activate the turbojets.

I want to tell her about my trick. It’s not a gift. Its just a trick. But even if I did tell her, and she figures it out, what good would it do me. I die today, and wakeup a smelly vagina turd somewhere else. She dies in thirty years and comes back as my daughter. What fun would that be?

I guess that is why I don’t call it a gift. When I am actually living my adult free for all life. I feel blessed (I’ll get to that in a bit). But the starting over, that sucks.

Beats the alternative, echoes in my head. Something my truck driving buddies used to say in a past life.

It does, and it doesn’t.

What is the secret?

I remember the first time I died. I was barely sixteen seasons. A man in those days. Sent into battle. My clan leader yelled charge, and before I could raise my sword, my guts were spilling onto the mud. I felt the life leaving my body along with my insides. There was a light, bright at first, then a dark pinhole formed in the middle. I thought, Is that the hell they speak of?

Then, along my periphery I saw a fissure in the vail of light. It looked more promising than the darkness that grew from the center of the light. I turned my attention to that fissure, focused all my waning energy on escaping that darkens to that one hope for escape.

Then I wailed. Wailed the cry of a newborn baby.

Somehow, I transferred my ­self from a dying body, to new body. What is my self? I don’t know. I don’t think it’s a soul. In thousands of years, I have seen no hell. No pearly gates. No angel at a golden desk handing out hallway passes. Just that small, almost imperceptible fissure. I find it with no difficulty anymore.

Am I the only one? I don’t know. How do we find each other? Should I walk up to everyone I meet and ask, “How many lives have you lived?” “Do you escape death?”

Lisa calls out our altitude, pulling me from my reverie. Its time to pull our chutes and see if we can escape the man.

I won’t be escaping death today. The jump went perfectly. But now you know my secret. As the life ebbs from your body, avoid the darkness. Look for the fissure. It might be your doorway to a do over.

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