By Mark Wright
I reach into my pocket and pull out my door keys. Sorting through the many keys on my key ring, I stop and process my life events wondering why I do what I do. I find my door key. Slide it in the doorknob and turn it which turns the doorknob and slowly opens my apartment door. The moonlight, shining through the front window, lights the room as a black and white noir picture. The picture of my den, artistic through my peripheral vision, is not right. I grab the doorknob and stop the door. Listening for any odd sounds, I hear nothing but the buzz on my neighbor’s TV. He leaves it on 24-7, even though he canceled his cable three months ago. I can’t smell anything out of place but can taste a New York dark brown shoe polish in the air like when I get my shoes shined. I never have my brown shoes polished. Staring at the wall—listening to the seconds tick, inside my head. A shadow twitches. Without time to think, I roll to the right, with my back against the split between my neighbor’s door, and pull the door shut. With my hand still on the doorknob, I hear a large caliber gun ignite inside my apartment, followed by an enormous hole appearing above my arm, in the door. Without thinking, I am on the ground, parallel to the outer door baseboard. My pistol in hand, I put the barrel on the bottom of the doorknob and fire. The doorknob and lock fly backward along with the door. I see the shadow, smoke flowing from its pistol barrel. I fired three shots. Entering and exiting the shadow. I hear my neighbor, Shane, opening his door. I stand up, brush myself off, and put my gun in its holster. As I shut my door, Shane looks over at me.
“What’s up Wes?” says Shane.
“Not much… You hungry?”
“Let’s go get a pizza and a beer," I say.
Shane smiles with his eyes wide open and points in my direction.
I nod my head, “Sir Pizza… I’m buying.”
“Let me get my jacket,” said Shane.
I take my smartphone from my pocket and dial…
“This is Wes… I need a cleaner…"
Copyright © 2018 Mark Wright