It’s half past 11 and you’re driving your 2003 Toyota Corolla™ down a shrouded residential street. Your path is painted only by the artificial light fighting for freedom within streetlights caked with moss and dirt. You turn on the radio to find nothin but 70’s love songs peddled by middle aged jockeys all currently experiencing their scheduled crises. You elect to drive in silence. You’re almost there anyway.
You turn a sharp corner and park across the street from your destination: a small wooden house engulfed by a forest of what you assume once was neglected lawn. As you conspicuously exit your car the local canines begin to serenade you for a proper entrance. Wary that your intro might be a bit too extravagant for some you quickly locate the chamber door for which you wish to rap upon. Before your fist can connect with even the flakes of old paint whisked away, the door swings open.
Following your failed attempt is a flash of blinding light shining through billowing smoke. The thick smoke dissipates and before you stands a man in a striped hoodie, his face hidden behind thick oval sunglasses and a hood with the drawstrings tightly knotted in a neat bow. Silence falls on the area as you stand there staring, your body paralyzed. Was it confusion? Fear? intimidation? You fiddle with your pocket in an attempt to reach for your business card when the mysterious man breaks the silence. “Come in” he calmly requests. You instinctively, almost submissively, comply as the door shuts behind you.
You follow the man through a long hallway lit by dim red lights that shine off the shattered glass and aluminum garbage in an oddly beautiful way. As you walk on you can’t help but notice you’re being followed by the eyes of several residents loitering outside their doors. They curiously rush inside as you come closer. Or maybe it’s him? The hallway ends and you wait as the man fiddles with his keys shortly before opening the door.
The door swings open to reveal what you could only describe as the dark abyss. The darkness extinguishes as the man pulls on the drawstring in the center of the room. The light reveals a small bedroom furnished merely with blankets strewn across the floor, several dismantled firearms, and a small personal computer in the corner. Suddenly you’re thoughts are interrupted by the sound of a metal chair landing at your feet thrown only by the mysterious man you came here to interview. You unfold the chair and before you can take a seat the man speaks once more.
“So what do ya wanna talk about?”
The question of the evening. A question you’ve spent all week contemplating. The answer that leaves your lips forever dictates future events for years to come. You feel a bead of sweat travel down the goosebumps of your spine like a pachinko machine. You take a deep breath.
Silence. For what seems like centuries.
The man’s blank expression slowly morphs into a shit eating grin stretching from ear to ear. He stands up and begins to drag the chair across the floor until he’s just about a foot away from you. He sits back down and leans forward, readying his retort.
“This’ll be fun.”