The Streetlamp Children (Camp Nanowrimo 2017)

The streetlamp went off at six this morning and a young woman was kissing her boyfriend goodbye as he headed to the bus stop. Watching him board the cross-town bus and vanish on the horizon. As she began to get ready for work herself, she wondered what news she would bring home to him.

Mark ran down the street trying to make it from the bust stop to his job in the call center. He stumbled past security swiping his card hastily. As he ran by to get to his desk he passed by Beth as she walked around the corner just out of his sight.

Beth stepped out into the sun her face buried in her hands. The tears streamed down her face as she wondered how she was going to tell her roommate. She got into her car and took the long drive home. On her way she nearly hit a rough looking kid on a bike. She cursed at him angrily to stay out of the road.

Josh shook his head and continued on his bike. He had an interview at a hotel today and couldn’t afford to be late. Living with his brother wasn’t enough without a job and he hated depending so much on him. A high school dropout wasn’t the best hiring material but he wanted to do better. He sat in front of the manager and nearly cried when she said she’d give him a chance. He hugged her in excitement.

Abigail patted her newest employee on the back. She was happy for him; he looked like he really needed this job. God was with him. She picked up her stuff to go take a smoke break. Working there for ten years had given her a comfortable life and she was about to get promoted. Life was good. Her desk phone began to ring and she picked it up quickly hoping it was the site manager telling her she had succeeded. It was her clinic doctor and she broke down crying.

Dr. Barnett hung up the phone after setting up Abigail’s next appointment. He put the test results down and shook his head. Another victim of unprotected sex who had a promising future had passed him by. He couldn’t stop here and feel sorry for each one of them anymore. He had better news to give to a waiting young woman.

Porsha dropped her last pack of cigarettes in the trash and rubbed her flat stomach with a smile on her face. The world made sense for once and she knew everything would be okay. She took out her phone to phone her best friend Beth but the sound of a car spinning out of control made her freeze. She screamed as the force knocked her out of the way.

Josh lay on the ground breathing hard. He looked up into the face of the most beautiful girl he’d ever seen and was happy that he saved her. Things were going right for her from the way she’d smiled coming out of the clinic. He smiled a little as the darkness hit him and thought “Dammit, I just got that job!” His brother was going to be pissed.

Taylor shot up from his chair and logged off his computer. He asked Mark to cover for him because he needed to get to the hospital. He he tried to call Abigail to cancel their date but found that her phone was turned off. He could talk to her later.

Abigail went home finding Beth calling any job she could. She asked what had happened and realized Beth had been fired. Abigail began to break down as it all hit her at once and Beth learned that Abigail had HIV. They held each other and cried not sure of what to do with one of the unemployed and one irrevocably sick. Beth called her dad and begged him for help.

Dr. Barnet got off the phone after wiring emergency money to his daughter. He went to the diner for a good cup of coffee and a quick smoke. Porsha, who was glowing like God had kissed her on the cheek, served him the usual and thanked him again. He left her a big tip saying he’d been there with his first born too.

Porsha found out from Mark that Josh would be okay and she used the big tip to send flowers and a thank you card promising to visit him in the hospital. She went to the apartment and rubbed her sore feet, hoping to hear from Beth soon. She smiled at her one bedroom apartment knowing that there would have to be some changes. She made a pot of tea and took out her boyfriend’s favorite cup. Just as the sun set the last bus drove by.

Mark walked into his apartment and hugged his girlfriend, happy that she hadn’t taken her away from him. She kissed him and told him the news, pressing his big hand to her stomach. He was scared and would admit it but the glow on Porsha’s face said that they would be alright. They sat together on the couch and sipped their tea settling in for the night. He texted Taylor asking if everything was alright?

Taylor held Josh’s hand as the sun set on them and he laughed as Josh commented that he looked like literal shit despite being the one who’s face was swelled and bruised. Josh asked if he’d told Abigail yet. Taylor lowered his head shamefully and shook his head. Josh pulled his hand from his brothers and looked away from him, not being able to believe he could not only be so irresponsible but take someone innocent down with him. Yet Josh still cared…

The streetlamp came on, lighting up the darkness. Its children settled for a while, thanking God that they had all made it through the day no matter of the good or bad. At peace with the world at the moment and sleep called to them. All was alright until the artificial light stopped shining with the coming sunrise. The streetlamp would blink out and the circles they walked around each other would begin again.

— Harli V. Park —

I, um… hmm… 

I took a break from horror and musing for this particular niggling thing that flowed out while I was trying to get inspired. A bunch of people running in infinite circles not realizing just how much each of them affect each other’s lives. I, um.. have no idea what to say about it so take it for what it is! 

Camp Nanowrimo Day 11 and I’ll be posting 12 when i write it. That way I’ll be fully caught up and I can stop feeling like a literal garbage fire! This was surprisingly long but I really like it and hope you did too. Let me know what you think. 

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