How to Capture the Crow
They say to see just how bright the light is you have to live in the darkness for a while.
It’s raining outside and the streets are slick with black water rushing down any crack and crevasse it can find. It’s as if the rain can wash away the past, each paper, each penny, every tiny imperfection. The cold humid air leaves a fog on the inside of the diner’s window near my lips. I can’t help but to stare out into the empty city streets wondering if there is someone out there feeling the same way I do, alone and forgotten.
“Excuse me.” I hear the waiter say impatiently
“Ye… Yeah” I say clearing my throat quickly.
“You need to order something if you’re going to sit here for much longer. I need this table for other customers.”
I take a look around the empty diner and see only an elderly couple drinking coffee and eating pancakes in the corner.
“I’ll leave.” I say quietly picking up my purse and sliding off the cozy leather booth. I slip the worn out fabric strap from my purse across my body. It sets perfectly on my hip.
As I walk out onto the sidewalk my waist long dark brown hair becomes instantly damp. It’s pouring outside now and the streets are quickly becoming flooded with gushing swarms of water. I drag my old tennis shoes threw the cold water and over to the stop light. The streets are empty, but the sign insists that I wait to cross, flashing a big red hand at me. Finally the sign signals that I can go and I quickly walk across the street. As I get to the other side I jump a bit as I notice a girl leaning on the brick building in front of me. She’s tall and slender with defined muscles and short choppy black hair. Her eyes are a piercing light blue like that of a rare wild cat.
“Hello.” I say as she takes a puff of her cigarette and blows it into the air
The smoke drifts out of her lips and into the air being punctured by bolts of rain and swayed by gentle winds.
“Hey” She says in a raspy voice flicking her cigarette into the steady stream in the road.
I watch as it sizzles out instantly making a faint hiss then I look up and see her walking away. I stare at her for a second then I quickly follow.
“I’m actually lost” I say hoping she will stop. “I just moved here from Florida… If you could just tell me where highland drive is…”
The girl quickly crosses the barren street. I stop at the corner of the sidewalk looking at the flashing red hand telling me not to cross.
“I just need directions...” I say quietly.
I glance both ways trying to see past the crowded sky full of rain and mist then I look back at the red hand still urging me not to cross. Nothing looks like it is coming so I quickly run across the street. The water is slick with oil and mud. My old tennis shoes fail to grip the ground halfway through the street and I fall twisting my ankle. I cry out in pain then I quickly try to pull myself away but my shoe is stuck on something deep in the black dirty waters. I reach my hands into the water and I try to untangle the mess of twigs and mud that surround my foot.
Just as I get the majority of my foot uncovered I hear the roar of a loud engine. I can barely see bright lights of a semi through the rain but its close. I freeze glaring at the front of the large metal grill feet away from me. I gasp and then get thrown onto my back. I’m pushed onto the ground tightly getting every ounce of air squished out of my lungs. I hold my breath as my whole head is in gulfed by water. I can feel the ground shaking around me. I struggle to get back up with no success until finally I’m pulled up and I open my mouth gasping for air.
The girl I had been following reaches into the water and unties my shoe pulling my foot out of it. She then carries me across the street slowly. I shake and hold onto her in shock until she sets me down on the sidewalk.
“I’m… s… sorry” I say shivering from the freezing cold water I had just been bathed in so the semi could pass over without hitting me.
“Highland drive is ten miles away” She says crouching next to me. “Do you have a car?”
“N…No” I stutter looking up at her confused and blinking as the raindrops hit my eye lashes.
She picks me up again and I hold onto her as she carries me away. I crave the warmness of her skin. I am chilled to the bone and I can barely think straight. I close my eyes until I finally hear the rain muffled then the slam of a metal door.