Monday, 16 March 2009

Short Story

A Short story I wrote a while ago and don't know what to do with....

Night Walker:

Dragging her eyelids open only to see the fermenting clementines next to her, she let them shut slowly back down. Eyes still shut she lifted her heavy limbs out of bed and walked towards the front door. She kept her eyelids down, though she knew exactly what was surrounding her- bodies lying comatose, ashtrays filled to the brim and pools of beer sitting stagnant in forgotten cans. She didn’t care to look. Instead she felt her way to the door and opened it, she left the smell of death behind her and embraced the iced breeze of the night.

Her feet were bare and hurting as she walked over the gravel path. The tarmac road felt heavenly. Her tracksuit bottoms were too big for her and left her fresh tattoo completely exposed. Her hoody was shrunken and tight, riding high to reveal more tattooed skin on her stomach. She stretched out her arms and pretended to balance on the pale curb by the road. Not a single car drove by, not another life for miles- exactly how she hoped it would be. She headed to the middle of the road and lied down, the cold cement refreshed her rotting body. She stared into the sky at the two stars on show and half-lit moon. She stared at them with no thoughts running through her head- there wasn’t need for thought tonight.

Eventually she rose from the road and continued walking. To her right was a 24 hour MacDonald’s, inside the workers had taken off their hats and were falling asleep on the empty tables. She walked in and ordered a milkshake, a chocolate one. She was greeted with strange looks and disgusted eyes as she smiled dreamily at the acne ridden employee. He gave her the milkshake and she gave him a quid and a kiss on the cheek. “Thanks gorgeous”. She left them with their bemused faces and drank her milkshake as she walked. Which she did a lot. She walked and walked. She saw houses, most of them sleeping, some of them not. She heard arguments between husbands and wives, she saw kids smoking out of their windows, she even saw a couple making love on a kitchen table. Now I say making love, but I don’t mean that- I mean sex. Sex in it’s purest form. She watched in awe sucking her straw absent mindedly, how she missed sex, passion, all of that. Continuing on she returned to the house with the child smoking. The girl smoking out of her window reminded her of herself when she was 12. The two met each others gazes and after another sip of her milkshake, our night walker gave the child a wink and weak smile as if to wish her good luck. And with that she continued on.

Pass the housing estates now and towards the outskirts of the town. Here lay abandoned warehouses and empty petrol stations. She had left the world of the living and entered a ghost town. She wondered through these buildings, half expecting to be raped or murdered- half expecting? Half hoping. Instead she met a stray cat. Black as her hair and undernourished, she let it have the remains of her milkshake and gave it a scratch under its chin. Just a couple of lost souls passing in the night. She extended her hand as she walked and felt the chipped bricks of the building. She liked to do this, touch things as she walked passed them, she imagined this would be how life would be if she was blind- she imagined it would be tremendous.

Leaving the ghost town and stray cat she climbed over a wire fence into the skate park. There was a single skateboard lying upturned on a ramp. She flipped it over and wiped the mud from it’s wheels. She took it to the top of the ramp and settled her feet onto it. Using her arms she propelled her way down the ramp, with arms outstretched as always. She was flying alone with only rolling wheels for company. She continued skating for another hour until moving on. She took the skateboard with her but did not ride it- she preferred to walk.

She was far away from home now and saw no sign of civilisation. Her thoughts briefly drifted back to her home and the fermenting clementines, forgotten and rotten. No. She was not there anymore, she wasn’t even in the same universe right now. Looking to her left she saw the beginnings of a wooden fence. Fantastic she thought, we’re nearly there. She stroked it as she walked, secretly enjoying the odd pain from loose nails. She giggled to herself until a shadow stopped her in her path. The shadow from the bushes slowly revealed itself to be a lone wolf. It stopped in the middle of the road and stared at her. She looked into it’s eyes with no fear- she was beyond that now. The two creatures stared for an eternity, (or two minutes, actual time). She felt no terror, no horror, just a pure calmness throughout her entire body. Here she was looking into the heart of a killer and she felt totally at ease. Was she dead? She must be, no living person could do this. The wolf lowered it’s head in pity and returned to the bushes in a blur of silver fur. She wanted to cry, to fall in the road and cry it all out- but alas, she was numb.

She climbed over the wooden fence and down onto the soft sands. She walked and walked, legs moving without prompt now, as if some force was controlling her limbs. As her toes touched the sea she stopped dead. She sat herself down on the wet sand and stared at the ocean like she had stared into the eyes of the wolf. Why wasn’t she cold? It was the middle of January and she wasn’t wearing shoes or socks- let alone a jacket or scarf. She should be shivering, hurting, aching for heat- but no. here she was motionless without a single goose bump. She wasn’t crying either, despite the desire to still raging through her. She wanted to scream, to run, to at least keep walking- but something had her rooted to this spot.

Her eyes followed the waves as they slowly lapped around her. She wondered what she would do if she saw a man drowning right now. Would she run to his aid, call an ambulance, attempt to save his sorry life? No she thought. I probably wouldn’t. her head began to ache, much to her pleasure. She loved her tension headaches, they were the one thing that linked her to the rest of humanity. She did suffer the delicious pain, she was human after all. Was this fresh pain serving as a reminder that she was still alive? Or just a dull ache to remind her she’s not part of this world anymore? She didn’t know, it hurt too much to contemplate.

Somehow she managed to pull herself up from the sand and onto her feet. She looked at the ocean with envy. She wanted to join her imaginary drowning man. She walked into the sea, the freezing waters doing their best to tempt a reaction from her weary body- notice the pain! Turn back! They screamed. She felt nothing. She walked on to the ends of the earth, hoping for some sort of salvation. Sadly all she found was the floating corpse of her once walking body. A tear fell for the first time. She smiled.

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