Chapter Eleven

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Judging by the amount of stuff Darrell had in the apartment, I figured they would be gone soon. I needed to disappear for a while. My heart was still pounding and my legs were a bit shaky. I tried to comprehend what had just happened. I had just avoided a potentially lethal blow from Mr. Channing. I should have felt lucky, but I felt like crap. 

I needed to forget about what had just happened and focus on more important matters, like where I was going to live. I checked the time on my phone; it was 8:30 p.m.  

I decided to walk up the street to a local supermarket. When I arrived, the place was empty. There was only one cashier open with no customers waiting. I went over to the cash machine and inserted my bankcard. I glanced up to make sure Mr. Channing had not followed me to finish off what he had started. I entered my PIN and hit 'View Balance'. The display read, $438.43. I selected the 'Transfer Funds' option from the menu and transferred $500 from my credit card to my account, now I had a little over $900.  

Right beside the cash machine, I noticed a message board. The amount of ads was overwhelming. An ad posted the day before was considered old because within a day, there would typically be three new listings stapled on top of it. I sifted through the layers, most of them junk - lost dog posters, concert listings, odd jobs, it was all there. There were some ads for apartments, mostly looking to share accommodations with a Japanese student or a female, neither of which applied to me. I was not even sure I wanted another roommate after my last experience, but with only $900 to my name, it was the only reasonable option. I found one ad that said '2 BEDROOM APARTMENT FOR RENT. $600 PER MONTH. RIGHT DOWNTOWN. MALE PREFERRED'. This seems good, I thought, and it is on top of the pile, so it must be relatively new. I tore off one of the phone number tabs and gave the number a call. 

"Hi, may I please speak with Chris?" 

"Sorry, Chris is not here," a woman's voice answered. "He just stepped out for a moment, can I take a message?"  

"Yes, I'm calling about his apartment for rent." 

"Oh wow, that was fast! He just left about twenty minutes ago to put ads around town. You're the first one to call." 

"Oh really, okay well do you know when he will be back?"  

"He should be back soon, I'll tell him to give you a call when he gets in. By the way, what type of music do you listen to?" 

"What type of music do I listen to?" I repeated just to make sure I heard her correctly. "I listen to rap music mostly."  

"That's good, I listen to rap as well. I'll tell you what; Chris should be back any minute, why don't you come over now?"  

Was this a date or an apartment viewing? Either way, I at least needed to check out the place that my secret password had just unlocked. 

I took my time walking to the apartment in hopes Chris would be there before me. I arrived at the apartment building and punched in the buzzer number the woman had given me. 

"Hello?" a man's voice came on the speaker. 

"Uh, hi, is this Chris?" I asked. 

"Yes, is this Trevor?" 

"Yes."  

"Hi, come on up. I'll buzz you in." 

I wrapped my fingers around the large door handle and waited for the faint buzzer sound. When I entered the lobby, my immediate impression was good. From what I could tell so far, the building was a lot nicer than my old apartment. The walls were white and clean, and the floor's polished tiles were spotless. I checked out every detail of my new surroundings and imagined this as my new apartment. I stood in front of two stainless steel elevator doors and waited for one to open. 

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