Chapter 12–The 13th Man

Burden of Tracks

Once again I’m stuck leering at my reflection for I don’t know how long. Can I trust you? Can I trust myself? Maybe not.. For the first time, I have felt the need to be saved. So I can look closer. Feel closer. Bargaining with fate to give me a short moment of denial. Maybe I’m not completely who I am. Maybe there’s a hole in me replaceable with human parts.. or still human. I could imagine Elena whispering in angst the philosophy of self sacrifice I’ve been trained for years. To burn oneself for the safety of others. To consume strength, to give up life, to leave desires.. for the sake of human life. But he makes me feel.. Fuck it! It can’t be. There’s unconditional heavy weight in my chest. It gets heavier by the second until I’m gasping for air. What is this? My hand clasps on the wall caving in to demented sense of illness. The unknown starts moving. I don’t want to watch this time rearrange itself into anything unexpected. I’m not ready for that. My eyes close hearing nothing but a faint wimp. What is this? A tear. Then a gush liberated by first feeling of orgasm. I am crying. I am crying like a human. I open my eyes to witness a ridiculous apparition. My emotions are wildly confused by amazement and pain. I am staring at myself.. my old face without cursing at ganglia for demanded thoughts. I need my pills. A smoke to sift through every fiber of confusion. I have to run out for a pack.

Cocktail dress and accessories lay unset on the bed. Randomly picking up clothes from a pile, I change into plain white shirt, denim shorts and sport shoes.

Walking like a corpse who had lost her soul somewhere, I’m half running the street. Careless has taken me to the next level. I’m usually conscious when out but not tonight. Half of the brain focuses on bringing me to destination while half is gliding above..lost. I just have enough to buy coffee and smoke. Two blocks after, as I’m about to make a turn, a white Ford screeches in the corner almost knocking me out. Practically knocking my brain out. This madness is gona kill me. But I’m gona have to kill this asshole first. Man in a business suit got out of the car, probably looking for a confrontation. Hoping he won’t but I think it’s too late. I’m more than surprised as he got closer. You are out of your mind!

“Hey! Are you out of your mind? You could have been hit. This is probably the second time that happened tonight. You know what’s odd?”

Keep your mouth shut Mikolai. “She doesn’t look like you but she vaguely feels like you.” His eyes obscured by discomposure. “I mean, she seems related to you in a way.”

“Sorry, but I have to be somewhere.” I’m in desperate need to distance from him.

“Where?”

“You know what’s weird? I don’t think I remember reporting my whereabouts to anyone.. especially to a stranger.” My annoyance is genuine but he looks at me unshaken.

His hand took mine anchoring with certainty of not letting go. I feel warm inside. “I’ll take you. It’s unsafe to be walking around here.”

“I don’t need you to. Besides, how would I know I’d be safe with you.”

His eyes are melting my will. It is obvious. I’m defeated by his mere silence. I cowardly followed while he opens the door for me.

He readies the wheel, demanding to a seven year old heart. “So, where to?”

“Do you have the habit of abducting people you’ve just met?”

“This is not the first time we’ve met. And I’m not abducting you..yet” He’s now focused on maneuvering the steering gears.

Did he just say yet?? I hate the feeling of being lead, even when Elena instructs a task. But this feels different. I feel liberated and safe. “Ministop please. Straight and then–”

“I know where it is.” You are one fuckin’ domineering dog. “So how long have been you staying at Trump’s?”

“Excuse me?! Have you been following me?”

“No. I just drove my fiancee back to her place. Saw you when I was passing that corner coming out of Trump’s”

“and almost hit me.” I don’t believe you. He’s quiet adamant at responding further. We finally stop at the store.

“I’ll wait.”

“Don’t” He looks away stubbornly dismissing every word..

I walk in peeping through stands while pretending to pick up more stuff. What the fuck are you doing? Leave! Just leave…

to be continued..

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