Chapter 3.15 - Midwest is The Best

Chapter 3.15 - Midwest is The Best

[Present Day]

My entire body is on pins and needles, but worse. Every move pains me, my body’s way of crying out for more blood. I got enough that my senses are back to me, but I need way more if I’m going to get right. I don’t need a lot to survive, but I’ve been frozen, staked, maybe shot, stabbed or whatever for god only knows how long. Right now, I need information more than blood. I’ve been wandering the streets, no doubt looking every bit of homeless vagrant intent on robbery. I’ve spent maybe a few hours asking random people where the closest library is. Most run away from me, I can’t blame them. I’d run away from me too. But Detroit is still the Midwest, and Midwest people are good people. Even if we do talk about you behind your back.

Eventually I make it to a library, eyes dart to me as I walk in. I stop at the drinking fountain. I know the water won’t ease the pain much, but it does ease the burning of my throat. I slide off to the bathroom and splash some cold water on my face. I can use a haircut more than ever before; my nails are long and ragged, bloodshot eyes, crusty lips make me complete. I finally grew that beard I always wanted, but it could use some work. I struggle to bite through my nails, really they’re more like claws. When I’m done they’re jagged and chipped but an acceptable length. There’s a bloody hole in my shirt from the stake, or bullet. I turn it around, knowing it’ll draw less attention if the hole is in the back. I use the hand soap and paper towels to try to clean some of the smell away. Instead of a burning corpse, I only smell like burning. When I’ve done the best I can to make myself presentable I make my way out the bathroom and head over and grab a ticket for the computers.

Thirty minutes should be enough for me to get acquainted with my surroundings. The first thing I do is click the small clock reading 7/10 for the date. It quickly expands to a full colander reading July 10, 2020 and I almost fall off my chair. My last memory is 2008, New Years Eve in Indianapolis. There’s more after it, but I can’t remember it clearly. Even that’s foggy, but 2020, no. That’s 12 almost 13 years. I quickly scan the internet for what’s been going on. Gay marriage is legal, recession, Black president? I missed a Black president? A Black president named Barack Obama? I have to be dreaming. I couldn’t get elected class president and my name is Ma... That’s two letters I can remember now at least. This Netflix thing sounds interesting.

I’ve only got thirty minutes before I have to wait in line again, I need to focus on the task at hand. I print out some maps of Detroit, a list of addresses and phone numbers. Enough that I can get where I need to go right now. Thirty minutes is more than enough time, I used to be really good at computers, but they’ve changed a lot.

“Ahhh,” I hear the man to my left.

Looking over, I’m disgusted. He’s holding what looks like a small dirty pink naked mole rat covered in bumps in his hand as it spews a thick yellow liquid. People looked at me as a monster just walking in here, and here this guy is masturbating in a public library. He notices me watching and finally zips up his pants.

“Like what you see? Too bad I ain’t into guys,” he laughs and gets up.

I grab his arm as he walks past “I didn’t like what I saw,” I squeeze harder as he tries to pull away, “If I ever see that thing again I’m going to rip it off and shove it down your throat,” I don’t let go. Just stare into his eyes.

The moment I feel his soul crushing is the moment I let go. As he rushes out I realize I’ve drawn blood on his arm. That’s not me, I need some blood. No, screw that guy. I finish up some searches about the current year and get a feel for things. Climate change was big after Hurricane Katrina, turns out it still is for most people, but nobody has really done anything about it. Cost of living has gone way up; wages have stayed stagnant. Police still killing people. 13 years and not a damn thing has changed. Except that whole Black president thing. Still can’t believe that one actually happened. Fiber optic internet cables, that was a dream, now it seems like they’re being installed in more and more places. Net neutrality, going to make sure to keep an eye on that one.

“Here you go,” the Librarian hands me the stack of papers I printed.

“What about the fee,” I ask her.

“I saw what you did,” she responds.

“I didn’t do anything,” she’s confusing me.

“You got Penis Phil out of here,” she smiles and hands the papers to me.

“Thank you, I’ll remember this,” I take the papers and head out.

“Girl, it look like somebody pulled him out the grave. He got a shotgun hole and his shirt and all,” the Librarian says to another librarian when a normal person would be out of earshot.

“You should have saw him come in. Cleaned up in the bathroom best he could, I guess. Bless his heart” she responds.

“Drugs are killing these young people.”

The two laugh, and I can’t say they aren’t funny. Midwest people, good people. Even if we talk about you behind your back. I’ve got what I need. I spread out the pieces of paper on the grass and hold them down with some rocks. A limited map of Detroit, but enough for me. I just need street names and where I’m at. Google maps, it was just starting out back then, but wow. Now it’s great. I was able to find a few different options, and map out a route with ease. If I’m right, my memory should sort itself out after this.


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