I can hear the sound of crackling wood and broken windows echoing of as if from a distance. An in the end, all that remains of my house is the charred and burnt offerings of what once was. As the fire reaches its final conclusion, and i can maybe once again move on.
I am just moving into a new place, a new town, ready to begin an start over. Me and my wife of ten years just got a divorce, so i thought maybe its time to go, try something different. Its a small little quiet town, not too far off from the city, where the people are nice and curtious. " Hey mac, your new around here...., aren't cha?". I look up, to see who it might be, and begin. "Yeah, yeah, just bought the place a few weeks ago". The yard is covered with boxes that jut out of the ground like pillars, and the closest house to mine is pushed off by empty space. " Well its always nice to have someone new around here. So where you from now anyhow?". He has on these gray shorts, like khakis, with (oddly enough) suspenders that don't really fit into this whole ensemble he has going on. On top he has this weird green cardigan and really short hair with one of those seventy mustaches all the hipster kids are sporting nowadays. Strange, if i may say so myself. " Just uptown, the city actually". We continue talking as i carry things inside, he follows shortly behind getting in the way more so than not. The living room is somewhat set up, so i offer him a drink and we pass small talk back an forth for a few. After about five or so minutes though. " Oh man, i... . I gotta, i gotta go". He gets up and heads for the door. " Sorry to leave in such a hurry, but". And once again, it's quiet. Its weird being alone, in a empty house. No screaming or others telling me to do (or fix) certain things.
Its the end of the day an the move is done. Boxes upon boxes stack up onto the wall, an the kitchen is filled with misplaced dishes and cutlery that apparently have no home. The living room is mostly set up with just having to call the cable man in the morning. Outside the night slowly creaks in as well as all the odd sounds that emanate from the walls and floorboards. No kids to feed, an no wife to talk to about the day.
Upstairs the bed is waiting, the blankets still cold from being outside with nobody to warm them. Its hard after all these years to sleep on your own. But after awhile, of tossing an turning, i finally drift away.
I awake in the morning with the alarm ringing throughout my ears, and a knock upon my door. Downstairs as i open it i see the cable man tapping his toe to some imaginary beat. " Oh hey, please come in, come in". He steps in and takes a quick look around and says. " So, is that the tv, right over there?". I give him this blank look, trying to hide the confusion from my face. " Yeah, yeah, its just right over there". He begins taking out this metal type suitcase looking as if he is going to pull out some revolver and begin putting bullet holes in walls and whatever else might get in the way. But Its just the receiver, box or whatever you might call it. He goes about his work without speak, the silence permeates and clings to your skin like beads of sweat. And as the television screen starts to climb an claw its way back to life, like some injured animal, a somewhat smile comes over his face. Almost menacingly so. " Okay sir, that should just about do it". He hands the controller over and. " If you want, i can tell you how to work it? ". He says this speaking like some james bond villain. "No, no its fine, i believe i can figure it out". He gives off another odd smile as he closes the door behind him, and as he's gone i can almost feel his presence is still here. Almost as if he left apart of himself, crazy... i know, or maybe just the first time being on my own.
The house is once again empty, so i go over to see whats on, but the tv is now off. " Wait, wasn't that on just a minute ago? ". I search my brain trying to remember , but to no avail. My memory as i get older is starting to make that grand exit. Going back to that eternal being from whence it came, or something like that. " Oh well, whatever, i guess it can stay off for know". As i take a look around, i can see the boxes are still making mountains, as the carpet is its valley, so i figure maybe its time to put things away. I seem to misplace things here an there as i while away the day unpacking. Its just little things really, but at the end gets almost creepy. Stuff will move and drawers will open or close, either that or my mind is really starting to go. The day goes by fairly fast, packing, tv and generalizations. At about ten o clock i fall asleep, on the couch, with broken down and empty boxes surrounding.
I got a headache, and the morning sun fighting it's way through the broken blinds don't help. And I had these dreams last night, with me running through the darkness with an unseen terror. But now, off in the distance, i can hear the slight sounds of music, so i take a quick look around the house to see what it might be. But as per usual, nothing comes about. I guess maybe its probably outside. As just out and down a couple blocks lies the, what some might call, the city center. And it is there that i decide to take a nice stroll, get some coffee and maybe meet the locals. After about a five minute walk i arrive, with rows of vintage buildings masquerading as coffee, clothing, and other miscellaneous shops. Everything almost seems out of place, as you can tell the stores weren't made for the use there used for now. It reminds me of one of those perfect little made up towns you might see on tv. Unrealistically so, but than again i am from the city, so its not something i am used to. I grab a coffee from this little family run place and find my way to this this park in the center of things. Kids play as the parents sit and talk amongst each other about random things that happened throughout the day. In behind there lies a field partially covered by trees, with picnic tables scattered throughout. Apparently this is where all the teenagers hangout. Wierd little place that reminds me of the street i live on back home. I take a seat just off of where the playground sits as to not appear creepy. The sun shines down upon us, glazing the town in an almost silvery glow, as the noise of kids, children and people in general surround and make it hard to distinguish any one voice. I am about half way through my coffee when this woman sits down beside me, with hair so red it makes attempts to set the sky on fire. She wears this worn in blue plaid shirt with jeans that have a single tear in one of the knees. " I don't believe i have ever seen you around these parts before?". I set down my coffee beside me, watching the kids all run around in circles, screaming. " no, no, i imagine not. I just moved in down the block, second an Victoria i believe". " Oh yeah, yeah, i know that place". She says looking back, in the wrong direction. " That's the old whitman place". She gives off this look i won't soon forget, a almost cringe like state as if she tasted something a bit off. " What was that look for?". I ask her, not really expecting anything back. " Oh nothing". She says almost sighing. " Its just.... You know what, don't worry about it". I am a little curious now, usually i would just leave it at that and change the subject, but this time i suddenly feel the urge to push a bit further. " No, wait, what were you going to say?". She looks off in the distance for about a minute or so, not saying a word, and then she begins. " Its just i never thought the whitman house would ever sell, thats all". The idea as of why is now running through my mind digging out the craziest solutions to that little problem. But i decide now to leave it at that. " So what exactly do people do in this town for fun?". Giving off a chuckle, she looks out at all the children playing, that has now seemed to grow, and are on the verge of breaking the borders of the park. " you'd be looking at it". " Really? ". I ask her in disbelief." " Yeah". She says with a slight pause. " Theres not much to do around these parts". This follows by a few minutes of silence, as we both watch the scene taking place around us.
" I think maybe you have been living here too long, taking things for granted". The town is covered by trees, that are juxtaposed by the backdrop of the circling mountains. An the air smells of pine, and fresh water. " Yeah, and why do you say that?". " I dont know, i just think sometimes you got to be a tourist in your own town". She looks over, slightly, and says. " Your probably right, but after awhile even the brightest of things turn dull".