In the moments that followed, the land turned to ash and the sky to fire. I entered a world that was far different from my own, but it was far better. The lands I soon walked were green and plentiful. Everything within sight was radiating life. All that mattered in that moment, to me at least, was destroying it. To escape this false paradise.
We arrived in Washington wearing different clothes, wearing different faces. As per the advice of the bounty hunter, we all shaved. Jeremiah almost seemed to fit in with his meek looks. Darren and I looked tough even with the hair cut and fancy suit. Still, it kept the lawmen from looking at us too long.
In that moment, we all knew what was happening. The rev of motorcycle engines was enough of a sign that we weren't wanted here. Taking what we could, we ran. The plastic bags stuffed in our pockets popped, the money spilled onto the floor. It didn't matter anymore. Salvage what you could be for our rivals burnt it all to the ground.
“Welcome to Jefferson’s Toy Store, how can I help?” the spritely woman asked behind the counter.
While my mother tried to explain that she was looking for something for me to give my friend on his birthday, I wandered through the small store looking at the many toys that lined the shelves. There was an assortment of stuffed animals in the dim store, but I was looking for something different.
I often had the strange feeling of solitude that has me wondering if I am truly alone. After all, there was nobody in sight, but if felt like there was somebody always with me. Some would attribute this to a strange sense, perhaps a loose screw or two, but I believe it meant there was actually someone there that I couldn’t quite communicate with.
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