Sunday, July 10, 2005

Lost in the Sprawl

The rain came down from ash-grey clouds, sidewalks already darkened from previous storms the night before, thunder rumbling high above, an epic clash of forgotten gods. He hadn't bothered getting an umbrella, so he stood under the eaves of a Starbucks, waiting out the fiercer parts of the downpour. Headphones today sang the melancholy chords of The Cure; techno was yesterday's beat, no room in today's worldview for the thrumming, bone-deep bass right now. So instead he floated on a mental sea of incredible depth, Robert Smith alternately screaming and whispering of lost love and anguish. Yeah, that fit. Consumer whore customers jostled him as they came in and out of the coffeeshop; he ignored them all. "Consumer whore... that includes me as well, doesn't it," he thought ruefully as he sipped a $3.95 cup of coffee. At least it kept him warm. He grinned and fingered the envelope in his pocket; at least he'd managed to get the part he needed for that last upgrade. The grin faded as he thought of her again, for the hundredth time that day. Always when he least expected it she'd surface in his memory. The sky broke open then, and an especially heavy rain started with an ominous rumble of thunder and several flashes of lightning. He sighed, shrugged. Flipped the hood over his head; he'd already waterproofed it, along with the rest of the jacket. A little rain wouldn't hurt, and he could feel the pull starting, calling him back home to finish that 'frame. Technology was a bitch, sometimes.

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