As I lie here in the damp, dark alley behind Club Aquarius awaiting death, I think to myself damn, how did I get into this mess? The sounds of the city start to fade as the clubbers and bouncers make their way home, unaware of the scene that played out behind this hopping dance joint just minutes before.
Earlier that week…
“I have to hurry! I’m gonna miss my plane!” I said to my sister as I rushed around my bedroom. “Have you seen my favorite pair of blue jeans? I thought I’d left them in the hamper,” I said tossing clothes every which way.
The room looked like a disaster area and still no blue jeans in sight.
“I don’t know why you didn’t put everything out last night. If you had just listened…if you ever listened, you wouldn’t be so panicked right now,” my sister Maggie said back as she helped prepare the luggage I was taking with me.
“I know Mags, as always I should have listened to you,” I replied still searching frantically for my jeans.
“Zoe, you’d better hurry, Samantha will be here soon,” Maggie warned as she folded more of my clothes and packed them even tighter into a small blue rolling suitcase.
“Ah ha!” I yelled as I crawled out of the closet waving a worn and ragged pair of jeans around like a victory flag.
BEEEEEEP! The sound of Samantha’s horn screamed across the morning air announcing her arrival. She and I were moving to the city today; leaving behind the farms and cows of Riverview for the bright lights and big dreams of Bridgeport. We’d saved for an entire year to make the move and were excited the day had finally arrived.
“Great you found them! Now hurry and get dressed before Sam comes in here and drags you out by your hair,” Maggie said giving me that older sisters’ glare. At 27 she was only 4 years older than me but she took the responsibility of looking after everything when our parents died 10 years ago. It was a car accident. Or so the papers said. If you ask me it was more like a drunk driver on a suicide mission with my parents as his sole focus for all his pent up rage and aggression.
I wrestled my jeans on and checked myself one last time in the mirror. I was wearing my red halter top which complimented my curvy figure, my long brown hair cascaded down my shoulders and my mother’s ring was on my middle finger.
I went through my dresser to make sure I’d packed my jean shorts as well. My hazel eyes caught a glimpse of a picture of my parents and I couldn’t help but think how badly I missed them.
Maggie caught my stare and turned me around to face her. “They’d be proud of you, Zoe; I know you have your head so filled with the glitz and the glamour of Bridgeport. It’s always been your dream to become some big time artist. But I want you to remember no matter who you become out there you will always be my baby sister! Don’t be fooled by the bright lights and the fame of that city and don’t let anyone change who you are,” she said.
“Mags, you don’t have to worry about me. I’ll keep my feet on the ground and I’ll be safe. I promise,” I responded giving her a reassuring smile. We hugged each other tightly.
I checked my suitcases one last time before grabbing them, my purse and my camera bag and heading to the door. Giving my sister one last look. “I’ll see you soon,” I said and disappeared out the front door.
“Wait took ya?!” Samantha yelled as I neared her rundown yellow range rover. “I thought I was gonna have to call out a search team or something,” she continued, her blonde hair framing her face and her emerald green eyes focused on me. She’s been my best friend since birth I like to tell people. There isn’t a moment of laughter or time of tears that I can’t remember her being by my side.
I plopped my bags into the trunk and slammed the lid down with a loud thud. “You know me. Always the last minute,” I kidded as I slid into the passenger seat and hooked my seatbelt. I guess it wasn’t really a joke. I’ve never been known as much of a planner. I enjoy a bit of chaos every now and then.
“You ready for this? Samantha asked giving me a look of excitement as she revved the engine.
I glanced at my family’s farm before responding with an “oh yeah” as Samantha gassed it for the airport.
Samantha and I arrived at the airport 15 minutes before the flight was scheduled to leave. As we moved toward the departure gates we heard a woman’s voice announce Flight 118 now boarding for Bridgeport at Gate 7 over the loud speaker.
“That’s us,” Sam said as she clutched her bags tighter and made a beeline for the gate.
Samantha and I boarded the Simcoast Airlines plane and settled in for the three hour flight to Bridgeport. Ready to begin our new adventure and letting the dreams we’ve had since childhood play in our heads as we’d hoped they would soon.
The plane began to buckle and sway and Samantha nearly jumped out of her seat.
“What was that!? Are we crashing!?” she yelled the sound of hysteria creeping up in her voice.
“Yes. It’s best if you place your head between your legs and count sheep,” I said in a joking manner. Samantha immediately placed her head down and began counting. The passenger in the aisle across from us let off a boisterous chuckle.
“Relax, it’s just turbulence,” he quipped.
We laughed as Samantha brought her head out, the pained look of fear washed on her face.
“That wasn’t very nice, Zoe,” she said, her tone and demeanor returning to normal.
“Sorry, I couldn’t help myself,” I retorted.