He thought of his children. One a young boy with his father's eyes, the other a stranger. He thought of them growing up without a father. He thought of Mariah growing old, lying alone in bed every night. Something stirred within him. This wasn't okay. He couldn't let that happen. He wouldn't! He forced his aching heart to speed up. His arms and legs prickled as feeling returned to them, and he drew in a ragged, desperate gulp of air. He forced his eyes to open yet again.
He was on his back in a cold stone corridor. Looking around, he realized that the door must have opened while he was busy dying. The falling sensation must have been him actually falling backwards into the corridor.