Monday, January 11, 2010


I was awakened by the sounds of the city streets below. I stood up and walked over to the window and looked down at the life bustling hundreds of feet below me. People, cars, buses, all of them in rhythm to the beat of the city's heart. I looked over to the clock and saw how early it was, wondering what it could have been that possessed me to lie down at the hour that I had. The sun has already disappeared from the sky and the moon is now hovering over the crest of the skyline in the distance like a light bulb in closet. The bed stands ten feet away from me, sheets tossed to one side - evidence that I'd been laying in it for hours, prisoner to their cotton chains. The hum of the television coming from the next room is the only thing I can hear and I rub my eyes, trying to decide whether or not to return to the sleep realm so that I can escape this. My body is shivering cold and goosebumps are racing up and down my back. The phone hasn't rung in days and I'm wondering if I'm falling of the face of the earth. I haven't uttered a word in the last seventy-two hours and I'm afraid of disappearing. Nobody has heard my voice and no one knows if I'm still alive. There is no one to come and see me. There is no one for me to call. I hear laughter from the television in the next room and I cover my face with my hands thinking about things and places and people and wondering if this cold room is where I belong.

I close the door behind me and lock the apartment as I head toward the elevator that will lead me to the ground floor. I place the hood of my jacket over my head and notice that not only are the hallways empty but the elevator which is usually occupied by at least one soul is lifeless as well. I watch the silver door close as they encapsulate me and I close my eyes as I feel the elevator car move. I emerge from the elevator into the lobby and see not a soul. There is something that isn't right. Something isn't what it's supposed to be. I hear my footsteps against the marble floor echo across the room and as I step outside the cold air hits me. Everyone is out here. Everyone is out on the street walking past me. The sounds of the buses and honking cars and the occasional siren fill the air and it dawns on me that I've been cooped up for far too long. Things need to change. I need to find my own exit from the world I've locked myself in. Nobody knows what I'm feeling and nobody knows the secrets that I'm hiding. But as I walk down the street, people stare at me as I pass them on the sidewalk as if they know what I'm holding inside. Like they know me and have seen what I've had to go through lately. I'm not one to wear my heart on my sleeve so I know that it's all in my own head. I hear footsteps. I hear laughter. I hear people's voices all around me. But yet, I'm alone. I look up into the sky and see the moon and wonder just what I've done in this life to be where I am now. Something has to have happened in my past. I must have said something to someone or accidentally broken someone's hart without me knowing.

I walk across the street and approach a black car in the distance. I toss my cigarette to one side and exhale one last large puff of smoke before knocking on the tinted driver's-side window. I know who this person is that's inside the car, but at this exact moment, I can't remember for the life of me who they are. I gather up all my nerve as the window comes sliding down slowly and I take a good look at who is behind the wheel.

"It's been a while, hasn't it?", says the person in the car. I close my eyes and disappear into the back seat of the black luxury vehicle, once again shutting out the world outside. It's going to be a long night.

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