In the Lights of Plymouth Street
“Hey man, is it alright if I drop you off here?”
“Yah, that’s cool,” I replied. Josh swung the car around and hit the brakes. I got out and closed the door. Through the window I could see the passengers in the back shifting over to fill in the gap I had left behind. The music started up again and they were gone.
I turned to face the direction of my neighbourhood and began to walk. The night was setting in quickly, allowing no light except for the streetlights which were glowing dimly upon the sidewalk. It was as if all the stars were hiding behind the moon, which looked no bigger than a golf ball from my altered perspective.
Across the street some kids had turned the community basketball court into their own personal skate park. The sounds of laughter and their boards colliding with the ground echoed far off into the night.
As I passed another streetlight I noticed my shadow projected upon a nearby fence. It was not alone. The second shadow crept into the picture shortly after displaying a tall man who appeared to be holding something in his left hand, although I couldn’t exactly make out what it was.
The sound of his footsteps infiltrated my ears. He was definitely gaining ground on me. My heartbeat was beginning to feel like a drum whose beat was progressing closer and closer to its climax. I lengthened my stride yet all of my senses suggested that he had done the same.
The corner! It was right ahead. I veered the left and made the turn onto Plymouth Street. I kept going for a while before deciding to look over my shoulder. Whoever he was, the man was gone.
I slowed to a relaxed stroll and took in a mouthful of the fresh night air. My house was in plain sight at the end of the street; the only one with the front lights on. I averted my gaze to the streetlight left of my house. Something had caught my eye.
There was a single figure standing directly under the glowing shower; like a performer centered out by a spotlight but I was the only member of the audience. It had long dark hair. From my distance that was about all I could be sure of.
I moved forward to better my view and as I did so the stranger slowly turned to face me. I stopped dead in my tracks about ten meters away.
The stranger was a young girl, no older than ten. Her feet were bare and the white dress she wore was covered in dirt, yet it was not that which made me cringe; it was her eyes. From where I stood they appeared to be leaking blood, and not just tears. The reddish fluid, darkened by the night was cascading downwards to the pavement like a waterfall.
I had no idea what to do so I remained still for a moment and watched as thick stream began to run down the pavement in my direction. The girl, still watching me started in my direction. That was when the streetlights began to go out.
It started behind me and in no time the wave of darkness had engulfed the whole neighbourhood. The only remaining light was that of my front porch acting as a beacon at the end of the street.
Without thinking I ran straight at the light. Passing where the where the streetlight had once lit the night sky I could have sworn I heard a splash each time I brought my foot to the pavement.
I reached my porch and began to dig through my pocket for the keys. The moment seemed to last forever but I finally located them and unlocked the door. I jumped inside, slammed the door and locked it up tight. I was home.
I wonder sometimes if that girl from Plymouth Street was real or if she was just a figment of my imagination. I like to think it was all in my mind but the red stain on the cuff of my jeans still hasn’t come out.