"Sometimes legends make reality and become more useful than the facts."
|image by Tom Quackenbush courtesy Unsplash|
I don't know where in the dusty recesses of my mind that this scene was hiding, or even where it's planning on going. It feels like more should be done with it, but with the 500 word limit, it'll have to stay put as a work-in-progress.
I offer the following in response: City Traffic
The wind tossed a stray newspaper page like a lazy football, carrying it a small distance and disposing of it with an incomplete pass. Waste clogged gutters and alleyways in drifts inches thick. The nearby park, enclosed in a prison of cold chain-link and razor wire, did little to inspire comfort and the tired playground equipment stood silent and broken. Architectural details of the multi-story buildings hinted at a time when everything was new and pristine but any denizens who would have remembered that time disappeared decades ago.
Crime didn’t hide in the shadows on unsavory corners anymore. Dealers and junkies completed business transactions in broad daylight near the overworked hookers plying their trade like fishmongers. Flash cars were common on G Street, driven by those seeking a fix away from their ivory towers or by the successful crime bosses evaluating job performances of those in their employ. The established circus of anti-social behaviors and criminal intentions performed daily if less intense in the cold, winter months.
Sara strolled up the sidewalk at dusk with slow, measured steps. The stench of urine and vomit assailed her nose as she passed dumpster riddled alleys. She loathed this part of the city. There was a taint to the air that lingered in her hair and clothing she could never be rid of. She intended to cross Leffingwell when she was accosted by a prostitute, angry at the encroachment into her territory.
“Hey, Matrix! Get your own corner!” screamed a brassy blonde in a sequined tube top from across the street.
“Relax, I’m not here to turn a trick,” Sara called back.
“Ah shit, you the fuzz? You down the wrong street yo.”
Sara debated approaching the blonde, but the prostitute was her best option for information. This is going to be expensive, she thought, pulling a wad of cash from her pocket. “I’m not a cop...tonight.”
“You fuzz at any time, you fuzz through and through. You keep walkin’.”
“Look, I’m willing to buy your time. Easy money. All you got to do is point me in the right direction.” Sara smelled a mix of fear and temptation. The greenbacks in her hand reflected in the blonde’s eyes like a flame.
Her voice dropped low and serious. “You wastin’ you Benjamins ‘cuz I don’t know nuttin’ an’ I ain’t about to wake up in no pine box.”
“I can play this game. For each ‘nothing’ you tell me about, you’ll get another hundred, starting after an automatic two-hundred just for showing up.”
Cat-like claws snatched up the money and stuffed it without ceremony into the crevice of her tube top. “I know what you after, yo. There’s lots that goes down on Leffingwell, but I spect you here about a missin’ little girl. Ain’t none of us okay wit dat, yo.”
Sara flipped out another hundred, “Understood. See? Easy money.”
The prostitute smiled, wide and toothy. “Sure, so long as my boss don’t show up. Let's play, yo.”
Some of the WoE crowd mentioned during the assessment that they aren't always sure when it's okay to leave criticism. I'll try to remember to be a better citizen and put a note at the end of my responses to the prompt, but if I don't, comments and constructive critiques are ALWAYS welcome here. Okay? Okay. so, let me have it. Give me what you've got. I can take it.