Shadows snuck their way through the night, blanketing the bustling city in darkness. Their long, inky black fingers slipped around corners and under bridges, casting eerie shapes in the moonlight. A cool breeze began to blow, and a full moon shone bright and clear as if to compensate for the morbid blackness of the night. Twinkling clusters of city lights hailed from imposing skyscrapers, tiny beacons of light atop lurking monsters.
On the outskirts of the city, few sounds interrupted the uneasy peace of the night. The distant hum of the interstate kept those parts from sounding deserted and empty, discarded and shamed. But there was another noise – something new that night in The Province, the slum-houses in the city of Marcain. Halfway hidden in the shadows, a lone figure sat on a grimy doorstep, plucking a few melancholy notes on a battered guitar and accompanying it with quiet snatches of a well-known song. Neither the voice nor the instrument were perfectly in key tonight; they told the silent story of pain and struggle, were anyone awake to hear it.
All alone, the man and his guitar mourned in the shadows of the dirty streets. Funny, they seemed to speak for all the other slum occupants, though he did not yet know them. The man and his instrument were the picture of a shattered hope, a crumbled dream. A perfect life of prosperity and promise, dashed to the ground to become painful shards of memory under his feet. All he could do was stoop down and pick up the fragments, store them away in his box of What Was But No Longer Is. Things would never be the same again, but he grasped to the hope that, someday, redemption would come. Of these things the man and his guitar sang, the timid sound carrying softly in the breeze. Only, no one heard.
Read more articles by Abigail G or search for articles on the same topic or others.