19 November 2009

Chapter One: Part One

Ignoring everything my parents attempted to instill in me when I was a girl, I left my office late in the evening. Alone. I usually left much sooner, just after six, but I had articles to cite and a case to prepare. Sure it was pretty dumb not to call for a cab but it was a calm, cool Montana night. It was Great Falls and the police patrolled Central Avenue fairly regularly, so even though I was walking alone in the dark, I didn't feel any danger.

The traffic lights blinked their yellow and red luminosity, the street lights glowed softly guiding my footfalls past seventh street to turn towards the south-side and home. I felt the eyes of a homeless man, crouched away from the breeze, watching me as I waited for a truck to pass through the intersection. I glanced at him out of the corner of my eye as he continued in his immobile, wind-protected position, staring at me through empty eyes. The truck bounced by, driving into the distance. I rubbed my gloved hands together as I crossed the now empty street and turned to look at my companion in the tattoo shop doorway. He was gone. Hopefully to a much warmer shelter. 

The further into the neighborhood area I ventured, the denser the trees became, cutting the light to pinprick beams, causing my feet to move just a bit quicker towards home. Apartment buildings turned into houses as my office turned into a memory. A dog barked and I jumped. 

"Guess this will teach me to procrastinate. Who needs overtime if I have to walk home in the dark? Shit. Who needs to walk home in the dark?" I scolded myself outloud for having stayed so late. I felt the plastic of the cell through my gloves and sighed audibly. I felt as if the dog that tried to give me a heart attack was watching me, waiting to eat me. Thank God it was just a lab. Labs don't eat people. 

Scarecrows and witches lined the windows of the sleeping houses. Here and there a television glared with the announcement of an insomniac. Gates on chain-link fences squeaked in the breeze. Leaves rustled and drifted to the ground in front of me. Nothing like a nice, scary walk to remind me to leave when the rest of the world went home.

(critiques accepted)