He was getting on. A former trapeze setter for the rig set ups in the air. But now he was let off by the circus and unemployment was a hardship. He was scrawny and frail but still was going day by day.
Down on his luck, no wife, no kids and no one who gave a damn. And then the impossible happened. He got one lotto ticket. And it won. He had it in his wallet and did not share the information with anyone. He was on his way to redeem the money and thought of all the good he would do. For now he wanted his soul redeemed and if he gave out money to good causes and did good deeds he would assure himself a place in heaven.
He rounded a corner and saw the fire. And then someone yelled out that there was a child in the third story window. The fire was intense and the child was in great danger. He knew how to climb. He could scale the side of the building and save the child. He went up and got to the room but it was empty. His destiny was sealed by a mirage that was not there. The beam fell hitting him in the head and pinning him to the floor. The fire crept up his leg and soon his body was burning. The pain at first was horrid but than it eased. Death came. His last thought was that he would not be redeemed. That the lotto ticket was of little use.
But he was wrong. For the sacrifice, even for an image that was not real, he was redeemed.