What God, Chapter 1Posted: August 19, 2014
The following is an excerpt of a work-in-progress novel. Please let me know what you think!
In the deep in the wasting corpse of industry an angel on a billboard burned. No one had touched this area of town in 15 years and this billboard was no different, a failed product line from a dying company. The top of it had already burned and coalesced into the smog, making the silhouette of this angel seem as though she was diving upwards into Hell. I listened to it burn in the wind-whistle silence of abandoned buildings. I sat and watched and listened.
I thought about checking the surrounding buildings for squatters to warn them of the possible danger. If I did I’d be shot. Even in plain clothes I look like a cop and there are days that looking like a civilian would be a blessing. I was born with a stern face and a conceal-carry permit. I’ve never been a civilian.
It was still early morning as I made my way through midtown. I hit the traffic, and people’s windows were open in the humid heat to play out their choice of early-morning talk-radio. I listened to the usual rhythm of dispatch at dawn; fender benders and last-call cleanup. After stopping to get some coffee at a drive-through I languished in the traffic, enjoying the rest after a hellish night.
Everyone out here was rushing to work or to wage, and when everyone else wanted to get there on time I was just happy just to have some. It was a rare moment in between paperwork and cases where the city was quiet only for me.
Reverie is rarely kept for long, though. A call from dispatch.
“Julia, My dear.” Was my answer, less formal than the precinct liked.
“Hey Mikey, Misha has a need for you” But I had known Julia since I was a PI.
“As quickly as you can” Figures.
“Let the Chief know I’m running lights from midtown”
“Be safe, Detective”
Its easy for a man to feel powerful when all he needs is some flashing lights for a sea of people in their own little worlds to part and give way. 40 minutes of traffic was made into 10 minutes of glorious speeding. Public Service has its perks.