Fuckin' rioters. My head is killing me. It's just a little blood. I'll be fine. Things have got out of control since it appeared. Shit! Karen? Where is she? The city streets are deserted. Not a bit of life, only the broken glass left from looters and small fires left from riots. Everyone moved on I guess, thought I was dead. I'm not surprised there are a few bodies in this empty, cold and dark city street, but where is she? I can't think straight. She was there, calling my name when I fell to the floor. It was light out then. People were everywhere. Shouting and fighting, it was chaos, everywhere people were going crazy because.. because it grew again. "Karen! Karen where are you?" Screaming out and I get no response. Think Trey, just think where could she be. Little sis, where could you have gone? I can't have lost you. I promised. I promised that I would make sure that you'd be okay, you were the one the family had high hopes for. I'm tired maybe some sleep and I'll find her.
Well the sleep didn't help my head none. Not that the concrete bed helped much. At least light out now. Damn it, it's gotten bigger again. The giant break in the sky. Like as though the sky is a sheet of glass which covers us all, and that sheet has a crack in it, ready to smash at any minute and it's coming. Every single day the crack which makes the world tremble in fear, the break that is ripping apart the heavens, which has led to mass hysteria gets bigger and bigger. Covering the planet in an apocalyptic tare. I thought I'd in with the looting. Everyone was going crazy at it, I just thought it was a chance to get Karen things we never had. What am I going to do? Give up again Trey? No! Not this time, I'm going to find her. I will. As I look up from my dirty and blood stained hands I see her. Turning into an alleyway. Her long flowing brown hair, tied with a golden yellow bow. Her small legs skipping around into the dark alley. No time to think. I run after her, what is she playing at? My legs feel weak, they could give way any moment. Across the desolate street I bound myself. To find her. My dear Karen. No one! The alley is empty, just a few bodies and trash. She isn't here? I saw her. I know I did. It had to be her, who else skips with such joy during these hard times. My head, it hurts. Make that noise stop! It's screeching and it's piercing through my head. I clench my my head and fall to my knees in agony. My vision is fading, getting blurry. This is it. "I'm sorry Karen." Wait there she is again, looking at me. Her blue cardigan. No don't go, don't go to turn the corner at the end of the alley, you don't know what's there.
"You okay there brother?" A voice, out of nowhere is calling at me. Who is that?
"Danny? Is that you?" I call out, my eyes are not opening, I'm trying but it's hard.
"Danny? No mate, why don't I get you some water aye." No that's not him. This man, he speaks awfully quickly, with an accent. A bizarre one. Irish! That's what it is, a thick fast talkin' Irish man has what I can assume saved my life. I open my eyes, vision still a bit blurry but I'm inside now. On a sofa, I can see him getting me a glass of water from afar. He turns around and comes back my way. Gets to his knees and starts pouring the water down my throat.
"Thought you were a goner for sure. Glad I could save someone. Hopefully you ain't another one of them nut jobs. It would kill me if I'd have to kill the man I saved now wouldn't it." I can't tell if he's joking or not. The way things are probably not.
"What happened? I saw her, I swear I did." I'm still confused but my vision is coming back, and I see the blue of his eyes starring at me kindly, not something I'm used to. A small goatee covers his chin and his brown hair is slicked back, a dirty face not a whole reason to wash any more.
"Don't you know what's going on? You know the smashing sky, the whole world gone mad thing? How long have you been out anyway?"
"What? I haven't been dead, I am aware, just what exactly..."
"Are you doing here?" Interrupting me quickly and ecstatic, he jumps to his feet. Fidgety but he looks strong. Someone who's been in a few bar fights. Someone who has to be strong to not turn into the nut jobs and is able to help a man.
"What you are doing here my friend is you had a nasty knock on the head and I helped you in. Nothing to it really." I gathered that much. I need to leave soon. I don't suppose he's seen my Karen. I am just left dazed and confused as he drinks something from a mug while looking down at the streets. I then notice how high up on an apartment building we are. Far away from everything.
"Hey have you seen this girl?" I reach out to my wallet and take out the folded picture with Karen's face on it. He goes to take it out of my hands to get a better look at her but I make sure to hold onto it.
"Sorry there, never seen her." He looks serious, as if he really tried hard to think about it. It was a long shot anyway but it couldn't hurt to ask. I get up from laying on his sofa. My head still hurts but the bandage he put has stopped the bleeding. I remain silent after he goes back to the window. All he does is stand there watching the ground and occasionally check the sky. This apartment has no electrical power, or none switched on anyway. No lights are on, it's dull grey interior almost gives me a headache.
"What's your plans for all this anyway?" I thought I'd break the silence, even though he looked deep in thought. He then put down his mug, ran his hands through his hair and then turned around and lent against the glass door.
"That is a very good question my friend. I think I'm going to stay here and watch it all happen. You know the world burn." I could here grief in his voice as if he's given up on trying. I don't blame him. "What about you lad?"
"For now find my sister, I know she's out there."
"That her in the photo?" I nodded sinking back into the sofa. "That's good. Something to keep you occupied while all this is going on."
"It's not just about keeping occupied, it's about keeping a promise I made." He looked at me and smiled. Then I notice as he went to take another swig of that drink that he is wearing a wedding ring. I stare at it as he put his mug back down. He noticed straight away that I was interested in it, in him. He removed it from his fingers and looking through the golden ring pointing it up to the ceiling. "What happened to her?" I ask knowing he is going to tell me one way or the other.
"Her name was Elaine, I loved her dearly and she killed herself about a week ago." All that is laid on his face is an apathetic look. He's made peace with the situation but it's left him numb.
"We were going to have a child too." I remain silent, waiting for him to finish his tail of tragedy. He then moves to sit down on one of the chairs and puts his ring back on while doing so.
"When the sky started to crack here too, people went mad, they were violent and just wanted this as their excuse for mayhem. During the chaos of it all, when things were starting to get out of hand, someone pushed Elaine over. She fell down a flight of stairs while escaping the building. We lost the baby. She couldn't recover and she didn't have any will after that. A few days later I found her hanging in what was to be the babies room." He looks straight at his mug and remains dead quiet after that. Anything I think of saying isn't good enough. This is the chaos my baby sister is lost in.
We spend the next half hour talking about just what we used to do, jobs, hopes for the future. It was nice to see at least some sanity left here. I need to get back though. He suggests it by saying "Shouldn't you get back to your search, no need to bother yourself with someone like me." He was right, my next stop will our house. Maybe she went back there. Maybe she's alive and well. That 'maybe' is all I need. I don't reply to him I just walk out and as I reach the door say "thanks for the whole saving my life thing. Good luck watching the world burn."