It happened. It happened quietly and fast. It happened to me.
I strolled down 15th street into a small coffee shop called Midleap Express. Which is my usual hang out place. I like it because it's never too busy. The door chimes as I walk in and I get a whiff of coffee and cool air. I can hear someone shout “Welcome! I'll be right there” from the back of the store. The floorboard creaks as I walk to a table closest to the window. I wait a couple of seconds before a middle-aged woman comes out with a smile on her face. She scans the shop to see no one. Her forehead creases as she moves her eyebrows together to form a confused look. Oh, how beautiful my great-granddaughter has become. When I look at her it's as if I'm staring at my reflection.
I head out of the coffee shop trying to make as little noise I can. I walk and keep on walking until I get to a building. It wasn’t a building before it was a park, and it was a beautiful one. What happened wasn’t beautiful. It was dreadful. It was a nightmare. I walk around the building picturing where everything in the park used to be. How the swings were close to the slide and how children would race to see who would get to the swings first. It was a playful place full of laughter and joy. Except for that day. the day everything shattered in front of me.
I died. Murdered. Nobody knew about it. They all thought I disappeared.
It was a great sunny day so I was taking a walk with my sister. We walked around the park and watched kids riding their bikes.
“It's so hot” Emma said, wiping her forehead.
“I’m going to get some drinks. What do you want?” I ask and see her face light up. I could tell she was thirsty.
“a medium lemonade with extra ice please” she replays
It's not that long of a walk to the store from here, but if you're tired it can seem like a million years. I look back to see Emma already settled on a bench talking pictures with her camera. She's always been into photography. She’s always been the outdoor kind, and I was always the brainy one. I turn left on Maple Street, and I look around to see a man with a bunch of scars on his face looking at me. I walk a little faster until I get to the store. I walk in and feel the cool breeze brush my face. The man at the counter has a warm smile.
“Hey!” he says joyfully.
“Hi! Can I get a medium sized lemonade with extra ice and a sprite?” I ask.
“Sure, you can. It's just going to take 20 minutes” he replies with a grin.
This guy is going to get such a bad review when I get home. It doesn’t take 20 whole minutes to pour some lemonade in a cup and get a can of sprite. I look around the shop expecting more customers but I'm the only one there. Which isn't normal around this time of day. I glance at the man who took my order, I have never seen him work here before. He notices me looking at him and smiles, but this time it’s a creepy smile.
My phone buzzes and I look down to see Emma’s text:
Where are you?
I text back:
It's going to take a while.
I try not to pay attention to all the talking that’s coming from the back of the store. I tried not to eavesdrop but I heard a deep muffled voice say something about needing one more dead. I didn’t like the sound of that so I decided to leave even though my legs were still weak from all that walking, and my need for a drink was growing. I walk out of the store to see the man with scars on his face in front of me.
I sit on the bench in front of the building. recalling that moment. When all the color in my face drained away. How I was too weak at that moment. His face was cut up into many scars. The most noticeable was the one that stared at the bottom of his eye and stretched to his jaw.
I froze on the spot not knowing what to do. It's as if my legs were determined not to move. The only thing I could focus on was the man with the scar pointing his gun at me.
“follow me. I'll shoot if you try anything else”
They were talking about wanting another person dead so he was going to kill me anyway. I was going to be dead. I hear a voice inside my head telling me to stay put but my legs take control and I start the run.
At first, I didn't feel anything, but I knew one bullet hit my stomach and the other my leg. I kept trying to move just a little further so people could see me, but I fell to the ground. Even though my vision was blurry I could still see three men hovered over me. The man with the scarred face was smiling and the guy at the counter was trying not to look at me. The other guy has a bag in his hand.
I'm dead, but I'm not. Instead of only seeing those men's faces I see myself too. Now I'm in a black bag and there carrying me toward a blue car. I kept trying to stop them. I yelled and screamed but nobody heard.
I could just let them leave with my body, but I slide into the car with them anyway. I helplessly sit, not able to do anything. Then I hear a small buzzing noise. It came from my dead body. I knew it was my phone. I reached into the bag and felt around for my phone. The men were too busy to notice. They were talking about how they had just proved themselves. I unlock the home to see
Emma had texted me:
Where's my medium lemonade with extra ice?