Urban sprawl

Contributed by Gian Louis Thompson | gthompson@flagler.edu

Onyx clouds vanquished what was left of the sun’s reign. I pulled up my hood as a wind beckoned throughout New York City’s concrete bones. The sky blackened with every minute but I felt shielded from the impending storm. The stoop on which I sat was littered with a display of rubbish from old gum to spent beer bottles. A cigarette clung to my fingers like a mantis as it coughed forth a stream of blue smoke. I observed the urban portrait before me, focusing not on one thing in particular. The legions of the storm marched further, conquering more of the sky and deploying barrages of rain with growing ferocity. And so I waited for my friend who was in the building behind me tending to something.

The rain had grown sick in the past months. Although I wasn’t counting, I knew it had been at least several weeks since the earth was thrown into the sky. The clouds wrestled with the suspended dirt and what resulted was a hideous spawn of water and soot. The black rain as we had come to call it. New York still thrived with people, but there was a constant fear which cut deep lesions into our souls.

My friend emerged from the shadows of the torn building. She was wielding an old carbine and a satchel full of explosives over her shoulder. She looked beautiful with those toys of strife. Her gray eyes beamed with excitement and fear, but showed confidence. I lifted my rifle and snapped the bolt back, chambering a round and positioning the slide. We met each other’s eyes, and I kissed her on her lips. It was time.

I took her hand and we sprinted through the mutilated streets. A round zipped past my head and nipped the tail of my bandana. Treasure snipers. I pivoted my ankles and made a sharp turn into an alley. There was an abandoned subway tunnel on the other side. We navigated past the debris and descended into the dark cavern. Soon the empire would cough up blood.

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