before

"Be careful walking home," his girlfriend Gretchen says, "because people will kill nice boys in a city like this." He nods, barely listening to her.
His apartment is only three blocks away, he's lived here all his life, he isn't afraid. He loves Gretchen, he guesses, but she's just so afraid of everything— "the city", the lights, the loud noises, the homeless people that ask her for change, and the taxis. They've been dating for a few months now, and she is constantly afraid that one of them will end up in the gutter.

"I'll be fine, goodnight." He assures her, and began to walk home. It has been raining all week, and has now slowed down to a trickle that resounds with a plop against all the metal of the buildings. He decides to go through an empty alleyway that will cut the walk in half. He hears a sound, like the low hum of a machine, or like a siren call. As it turns out, the alley is not so empty.

.

A woman leans out of a ground floor apartment window. She has the greenest eyes he has ever seen, the kind of eyes that would take away your soul, if you'd let them. She looks like a painting in motion, bizarre and hypnotizing, though she couldn't be older than twenty-five.

She was like the star of a moody art film, an emaciated goddess of heroin and violence— her face is carried by a pair of sharp cheekbones and heavy set eyes. Her head is much too heavy looking for her bony frame. Her skin has a sickly green cast, and her hair is either blond, red or blue. He can't seem to tell in this low light. Maybe it was all three.

"I could just eat you up." She grins at him, revealing long pearly incisors.