"Three in the morning, thought Charles Halloway, seated on the edge of his bed. Why did the train come in at that hour? For, he thought, it's a special hour...
Oh God, midnight's not bad, you toss but sleep again. Five or six in the morning, there's hope, for dawn's just under the horizon. But three, now, Christ, three A.M.! Doctors say the body's at low tide then. The soul is out. The blood moves slow. You're the nearest to dead that you'll ever be save dying. Sleep is a patch of death, but three in the morn, full wide-eyed staring, is living death! You dream with your eyes open. God, if you had strength to rouse up, you'd slaughter your half-dreams with buckshot! But no, you lie pinned to a deep well-bottom that's burned dry. The moon rolls by to look at you down there, with its idiot face. It's a long way back to sunset, a far way on to dawn, so you summon all the fool things of your life, the stupid lovely things done with people known so very well who are now so very dead --- And wasn't it true, had he read it somewhere, more people in hospitals die at Three A.M. than at any other time...?
Three A.M. That's our reward. Three in the morn. the soul's midnight. The tide goes out, the soul ebbs. And a train arrives at an hour of despair.....Why?
His wife's hand moved to his.
He did not answer.
He could not tell her how he was.
excerpted from Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury