©She Who Remains
It began in that sort of time of day that unravels you in spite of any calm demeanor. At least it had for the past few days —or weeks. She didn't know any longer; she lost track of time.
Everything stopped when she stabbed her lover in his cheating heart because she caught him sharing lost tracks of time with a previous friend. She yanked the organ from his body, wrung the throbless thing she called nothing at all between her hands, and slammed it to the littered ground, after which, she swiped her hands on her pants' legs.
She was surprised. She was frightened. Maybe she made a mistake.
Where were the pulsing scream and the hissing red-and-blues that raced with the beat of life around unlit street corners when commanded? She listened. Maybe the lights refused to grate their teeth and the siren only sighed as she passed the cascading eyes of towering watchers in multi-story identical cubes. Asleep at the wheel were the lighting stage hands who typically kept the stage of a murder scene bathed in a glow of melancholy blue and furious red.
Things no longer drifted along an ebb and flow of time; she never realized it until she sprinted half a dozen blocks from the scene. Her hurried pants became relaxed sighs. She was alone. And she couldn't stand it, the stillness of it all. Was this her punishment for her crime? Her footsteps echoed across the tired city.
Everything was still; no one capable of seeing her; no one capable of stopping her. She use to take what she had once wanted; tonight she sent it down a red path.
The thrill of her decision gone as quickly as a shooting star in a sunny sky; but also, it was the hiss and hums and screams she missed. She was tired. Every waking moment would be the same from now on... unyielding in its pause. On this day, the walls above broke because it was too late when she realized something was overlooked.
An orange glow on the ground caught her eye. The tip of a hand-rolled joint burning to ash.The stoned owner gone.
Was it a trap? Probably. The people, not really people anymore, chose this time of night into day to go and look for food. Some who were still alive never guessed that their food was people —real people like her. The new law of the land was No Fires, No Talking, No Moving Around. Absolutely no moving around if at all possible.
It was probably why there were no red and blues screaming to take her to a holding cage. They had all become food. She bit her nails. This wasn't living.
And the lover she murdered wasn't human.
And this was a silent camp in the middle of some used-to-be city.
And those armored eyes on the horizon meant one thing, and only one thing.
She was the prey in its line of vision.