• Posted: May 09, 2009 13:59:43
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Darkness descended fast. There were few streetlights. The moon had yet to rise.
We left the streets and entered an apartment house. The entrance was poorly lit. Beside the staircase was a paint worn table. On it were several wads of money, large coins with bills folded round them like origami.
"What is this?" I asked of my friend.
He looked. "Drugs. Don't touch. Come with me."
We bounded the stairs, turned into a narrow hall. Three doors down we knocked, three quick raps and in we went.
James had let us in. He was young, well groomed. He wore a white shirt with black vest, like a musician prepared to go on. "They are dealing in the hall below," my friend told him in hushed whispers so others deeper inside could not hear, his wife, aged father, mother-in-law, and two sons.
"I will send someone," James said.
He made a motion and two men moved from shadows behind the door and left down the hall from which we'd come.
We all three moved to the wide windows that looked out onto the street. The moon was rising now, big and white, casting a sheen across the broken pavement below. Here and there silhouetted figures moved from entrance to entrance looking, looking for invaders, dealers and their protection.
When found, there would be a message sent. A body would turn up in the street, throat cut, lighter fluid burning from hair, eyes, and gaping mouth.
But would the message be enough? Would the invasion stop? Would it ever stop?
Friday, November 23rd, 2007
88.8 mm 421 mm