Lies I've Told In Elevators
The Billy Joel Power Hour
"Aces" Rantanen's Nevada Finish
Oh, What The Fuck Now?
Count Back From One Hundred
Highway 111 (With The Wolfman)
News, Traffic, And Weather
Straight To Hell
November 13, 2013. Lobby to 37th Floor, Seagrams Building. Six passengers, including speaker and guest.
"So it's dark. Pitch black. I can't see my hand in front of my face. I'm testing every step I take, and because it's dark, the creaking sounds so loud—even with the roar of the crash behind me still ringing in my ears. I can smell the musty dampness of the old wood that gave way; the dust. I can taste it. I can also taste my adrenaline, from the leap I just made; I'd never had before. This copper zing coating my tongue.
"Reach my right hand out to the wall. It's damp, and cold, and rough brick. There's no wall on my left, so I have to use my right to help slide myself along in the darkness. I've got the gun in my left hand, and it's heavy, and my hand is trembling besides. I don't know what the hell I'm going to do with it. I can't see; I can't shoot. Definitely can't shoot with my left hand.
"But I can't shoot anyway. I just don't have it in me. I'm trying to shout for my brother: 'Bobby? Bobby?' but my voice is so weak it comes out like this croak: 'Bah... baaahby? Baaahby?' I'm winded from the chase; I know I'm gonna hear sirens any second; I'm SURE my next step is gonna plunge me forty, fifty feet to my death. And I have a gun in my hand. But all I can think is: 'Even if it was broad daylight and I was some kind of marksman, I... I just don't have it in me to shoot. This guy's gonna kill Bobby, and there's nothing I can do about it.'
"I pull my hand back; I've hit a corner; I can feel the edge with my fingertips. I stop. Nothing. Just the darkness, and my heartbeat, and the sweat pouring from my forehead. Not my breath. Not my voice.
"And then a small creak. Just the tiniest, quietest... creak. I wait. Wait for more. It's not coming. I wait for what feels like forever. My legs are shaking; my back is locked. If it isn't dark in there, my vision would be fading, anyway. From the fear. And I realize: I can't take it anymore. I don't know how long it's been, but I have to do something. Even if I'm gonna die, I have to. I have to.
"So I draw up whatever courage I have left. I grab the corner. And I leap to the—excuse me; this is us. Thirty-seven. Thanks."