Wednesday, October 26, 2016

#4 - The Murder in The 7th Floor

Nathaniel's tuxedo may have costed a fortune to rent, but it seemed worth it, walking out in the chilling night, it's fabric holding from the heavy winds.

Nathaniel reached the door to the 7th floor, with Beck coming right behind him.
“Hey, Beck,” Nathaniel opened the door, “Nice to see you’re here.”
“Yeah, good to see ya too, buddy,” Beck said. “Thanks,” he passed by Nathaniel into the floor. Walking into the room, there was already a murmur of activity. People were chatting and talking, waiting to get started with the dinner. Nathaniel walked up to a group with Beck in it, clutching his fake self made novel.
Nathaniel didn’t listen to what anyone in the group was saying, except he heard that Beck’s role was a lawyer, and that Eadon was the mayor.
“It’s great to be in the company of two members of the bureaucracy!” Nathaniel joked. Beck laughed along, and Eadon chuckled. Nathaniel left the group, and then drifted over the condiments table. There were cookies, punch juice, and some cupcakes. Maya came over to him. “Yeah, I know they look horrible,” she said. “I promise that the rest of it isn’t as rushed.”
“I think it’s all okay,” Nathan said with a smile, taking a cupcake. “Nothing is as bad as it seems.” Maya smiled a little and then walked away. While undoing the wrapping, Nathaniel saw the rest of the party was underway, people were gathering at the table and taking their seats.
Nathaniel walked over to the table, taking a seat at the corner. Everyone continued to chat, and Nathaniel opened his book- the fake novel made by his fake character. While he looked, Nathaniel’s eyes roamed the inkless and wordless pages. He traced creases and invisible lines with his finger.

And it was then that the blood was too much, and it was then that he became blinded. He, of all men, was a blinded fool. There was no family and there was no love left. He was going out of his mind. There was only the deaths. Only the deaths.

While reading, the lights went out. A shrill scream was heard. And then, the lights came on, followed by gasps in surprise. The circus’ second man was dead, flooded in his blood. Nathaniel looked briefly, turning his head away to look at the empty pages.

Only the deaths.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

#3 - Matthew 5:4

The underground trailer park was the newest discovery by Nathaniel in this town. He was glad to see it wasn’t underground, and the cool breeze felt nice. There were trailers and not much else. Although, he could’ve sworn he’d heard a dog barking around.

He heard the rustling of steps coming near to him. It was the ringmaster from the circus. The circus left a while ago.

Nathaniel and Beck never did find out if the twins were actually magical. Instead, Beck was surprised by someone or something they’d seen before. Something to do with their father. Beck had told Nathaniel that they would talk about it later, but Nathaniel didn’t know when.
The event from the gold tent didn’t mean much to Nathaniel, he hadn’t been there - however, the gold seemed to be tainted by blood. Even if there wasn’t really blood there.

The ringmaster’s head was hanging, and his hands were drooping down, a glass of whiskey in one. The paint on his face seemed to be peeling a little, but the mustache was still a smile. Just like the circus, Nathaniel was sure the ringmaster was an old element of his childhood.
“A nice girl talked to me today,” the ringmaster said with a slight southern accent, and the sound of a seasoned drunkard.
“That’s good to hear,” Nathaniel replied, turning to face him. “Who was she?”
“A girl from where y'all live, the apartments... Ah- Banks is, er, her name, I think.”
“She works at Jimmy's. Seems she likes that place a lot…” Nathaniel mumbled off.
The ringmaster was quiet for a while, but he then slowly stepped closer to Nathaniel.
“Ya, know boy,” the ringmaster declared out, “I’s feelin’ you’ve been to my circus ‘fore the night you was there.”
“What do you mean?” he asked, furrowing his brow.
“Oh, twas much a-time ago. There were many things back then,” he sighed. “Ya know, there was many-a folks there, back then. There was an old man who was famous once.”
“What happened to him?” Nathaniel inquired.
“He died. The cops didn’t think to look at ‘im.” he paused. “No one looked at ‘em,”
“But he was famous long ago, fo’ playin’ the electric violin,” the ringmaster said, looking out and tilting his head a little.
The silence seemed to carry on in the air. It was like suppressing a storm with divine powers, or stopping water flow with a dam. There was going to be a release, a revelation.

“Your favo’ color was gold, wasn’t it?” the ringmaster asked.
Nathaniel looked at the man, no sound coming out and no ability of movement in Nathaniel’s possession any longer.
“Ah, but, back then, the circus was, er, lawless,” the ringmaster said.
“And there was an accident. An, ah, accident that killed some- no, some people that you knew. People ya loved,” the ringmaster peered at Nathaniel, his face seeming to ask for confirmation.
“You was there with them, just as you had been many, many times before. And then, suddenly-”
“Stop,” Nathaniel said. “You don’t-”
“That was when they died. And when you should’ve died.”
“Oh?” the ringmaster said, almost seeming sorry. “Yeah, o’ course. They didn’ tell ya. No, no, of course not... guesses ya forgot you was there!” he said.
The gold bars appeared in Nathaniel’s vision. The crowd was cheering. The clowns were balancing on unicycles, and the lion tamers controlling the roaring beast.
Nathaniel covered his face, the darkness insuring.
The image came back.
Blood. Blood. Blood.
He fell to his knees and he knelt down, his whole body shaking. He felt the tears stream down his face.
“Ya, of all of ‘em, somehow survived,” the ringmaster said, looking down at Nathaniel. Nathaniel gasped and groaned. He kicked the ground with his shoes. He dug the palms of his hands into his eyes, the tears still going. He rubbed and rubbed, but the blood was still there.
“I am sorry,” the ringmaster said softly.

Nathaniel stayed knelt there for a long time. The ringmaster’s steps slowly echoed away from him. Soon it was still air, slowly getting colder as it became darker.
Nathaniel, with a sigh, slowly stood up from the ground. He sniffed and rubbed his eyes, wiping his face. He turned around and began to walk back to Winthrop Place.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

#2 - The Mirrors

Nathaniel was standing outside of Winthrop Place in the early hours of Thursday. The lights of the seventh floor were on. He cocked his head a little and thought hard. Has anyone lived there? Have those lights been on before? He crossed the street, the questions subsiding away in his mind.
Entering his room, Nathaniel set the ticket he had gotten himself for the circus onto the stool next to his door. The circus being here reminded him much about Finnburg. The ringmaster's green eyes reminded him of the parks, just like the old man of that ethnic grocery store. He hadn't gone there in a while. The circus was a fond element of his childhood, he and his parents spending long afternoons of the spring time there. However, thinking of the circus today, he came to think another thought. I never turned around to see the frowns on the jugglers and the clowns when they all came down and did tricks for me. 
Nathaniel needed to only look a little harder and he'd be able to see another's feelings. It would shake his core or brighten his day. And it all depended on the other person.

Around 6:40 PM, Nathaniel got up from his chair and walked out the door and down into the street to the circus. He showed up to the place, the roller coaster looming over the whole event. It looked shaky and he could hear the creaks from it.
Nathaniel came through the entrance and bought a cup of water to drink. The money had come from Nathaniel's pay from work and the greenback dollars felt holy in his hands. The drink of the water, it tasted even more holy. He decided to take a look in the house of mirrors. Nathaniel had always liked the wobbly, slushy, and bendy shapes his body would turn into. It was harmless deformation of a human body. Something that Nathaniel would've liked more of at a circus. While walking to the house of mirrors, a few looked at him, wondering why a 23 year old man was here alone. He simply would pass them with a glance and be on his way.

He walked through the corridors of glass and chuckled with each turn, bend, twist, and arch of his body. He was like a slithering snake and he was like a large fat man with more dough than money left. He seemed to wound up and shrink up and wiggle. His whole body seemed good and his smile seemed bigger and fuller and the laughter of a child escaped him many times.
At one mirror, while stretching his arms upwards, and expanding his stomach into a long thin caterpillar-like shape, a voice suddenly called out.
"You gonna drink the rest of that water?" the voice asked.
Nathaniel realized there was a person behind him, and he turned around.
"I was planning to." he said. "Why'd you ask?"
"Oh, I just like water," they said. Nathaniel did not know what to say to this, but the other person seemed worth a chat and some time with. There's something about them, Nathaniel thought.
"Hey," Nathaniel began to say somewhat suddenly, "you wanna see if those twins are actually magical? The boy and the girl?"

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

#1 - Missing The Action (#222)

The day started with Nathaniel waking up and getting out of bed in a jerry mood. It was when he looked out his window that he saw why he was happy. It was raining. Nathaniel had a liking towards the rain and the clouds. He quickly got dressed in a t-shirt and pants that were his father's some years ago. He walked down the stairs, his thumping echoing in the stairwell, and reached the front door. The rain pattered on the window. He stood there for a while, thinking hard of what he'd do.

He needed food for the evening. His fridge was empty, since it had been easy to carry up the steps yesterday. He stepped outside and instantly felt the rain hit his body and his soul. Some feel the rain, others just get wet, he thought. With a smile on his face, and his hands reaching out to grasp the rain, he hopped into a puddle. He took a look around.

There were cars stopped, stuck together. It seems that traffic never likes the rain. He walked down to the crosswalk to the intersection of Blackburn and Applewood, and made his way to the other side.

Nathaniel did not know where he could buy his food as he had just moved here the day before. All he'd seen were the apple trees on Applewood, the building of Winthrop Place, his apartment room, named #222, and his fridge.

He could've taken a right onto Canary Street, but he saw an old tree some distance up ahead. He walked across tall grass over to this tree and realized he was in an old park. It was barren except for the tree and a statue. Nathaniel walked over to the statue and looked upwards to it. The person that it was of seemed to have less life than a normal statue. How can someone be more dead than the stone he is now made of? Nathaniel reached Paradise Avenue.

Some time later, he saw an ethnic grocery store on the other side of the street. He ran across in the rain that was still going. He looked inside through the windows and saw a old man behind the counter. Nathaniel went in.

Nathaniel did not say anything to the man and began to look for his unknown dinner. Something worth more than ramen noodles, but still cheap-ish, as he had a month before his first paycheck from Jimmy's Used Bookstore. He saw some food that looked okay for his taste, even if he did not know what it was. He went to the counter, giving the food for checkout. Nathaniel looked into the old man's eyes.

His eyes were green and reminded Nathaniel of the grass at the parks in Finnburg. Always shining after rainfall. And how he would always rest his eyes, laying on the grass as the clouds began to clear and the sun shined.

Nathaniel reached back at Winthrop Place around 4:30 PM, after some more walking throughout the area. When he was waiting for the light to change, police cars sped by, their alarms blaring. Nathaniel sighed, having not missed the sounds of society on the long ride from Finnburg to here.

Nathaniel went into his room and read his book at the kitchen table. Afterwards, he ate his dinner, still not sure what it was he was eating. By 7:00 he walked to his bed and laid on it's single sheet. He was still in his clothes, but he was ready to go to sleep and wake early tomorrow.