Nodding to the security guard, I made my way through the checkpoint and out the revolving door.
After a moment, I realized something was missing - the noise, the sounds of the city- cars trucks, horns, sirens, whistles, the clatter of high heels on the sidewalk. There was only the sound of the breeze and the voice of a boy.
“Extry! Extry!...Read all about it! Scientists Confirm Life After Death! Extry! Extry!”
I motioned to the kid.
Handing him fifty cents, I asked. “Whattya know, Bud?”
“Jeez, Mister, all I know is it ain’t over when it’s over anymore - here ya go!”
He turned and ran down the street-waving his papers and screaming at the top of his lungs.
A few doors down the block a crowd had gathered at Chica’s Bar, trying to get in. There was a fight...two guys were going at a large man holding a Bible using it as a shield to ward off his attackers. The big man was smiling, face bloody, arms flailing wildly, grinning and singing as he fought back - oblivious to the punishment he was receiving.
The sidewalks were full of folks- some huddled in small groups, others hurrying in all directions, while still others stood motionless, zombie-like. The kid’s newspapers littered the street.
There was no traffic, save for a bus trolling slowly down 5th Street that stopped abruptly in the middle of the block. Engine still running, the driver got off and quickly disappeared down an alley leaving the confused passengers, faces pressed against the windows.
On the corner, a line had formed at a phone booth. The caller was in a heated conversation, waving his arms and smashing his fist against the glass. Outside, the people waiting were urging him to hurry - growing steadily impatient.
I stepped back into the doorway and unfolded the paper.
Hearing the thud, I looked up. The body had slammed into the sidewalk face down twenty feet away. She lay motionless at first and then trembled, raising her head just for a second as if to look around...and collapsed.
The crowd outside the phone booth heard it too.They stopped their shouting and after realizing what happened, all eyes looked up to the top of the twelve story building. Against a cloudy sky, the silhouette of a head and shoulders peered down .
Nearby... gunshots...and screams.
I ran towards the bus…
Ah, so you are getting back to writing stories. Continuations to come?
You've got my attention, Bmichael!
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