Shawna Lynn Cox

Year 2017. Day 1.
Classical, ‘Canon in D’, floats out of a passing black BMW coupe. Legions of black London cabs and red double deckers riddle the black rain streets of the night.

She runs. Stumbles. Iconic red lacquered soles ravaged. Heels long ditched from black lacquered pumps. Nylons run at her heels, knees.

Broken. Escaping. Jaw, cheekbones, hands marked red with fresh swelling violence. The woman pulls her hoodie farther down over her features as she nears the intersection.

She stumbles unnoticed through the stream of pedestrians. The autopilot night life of Pall Mall.

Someone, something dark, is in pursuit. The Tracker floats on instinct in her wake. A hound intoxicated by the fox.

A surveillance camera perches on the stoic building. An eye on London from above.

It watches a woman in a man’s hoodie, the hem of a black cocktail dress barely concealed underneath. Her hoodie too drawn to capture facial recognition.

It watches her hesitate at the once graffiti riddled door, white-washed with a recent removal effort. It watches as the weight of her shoulder shudders the door open. She disappears inside. The door shuts behind her.

The darkness overwhelms, dank and ripe with neglect. She descends. Breath, heartbeat deep and in sync. Muffled footfalls land on grime layered cement. Racing. Down. Racing into the unknown.

A door. She presses her weight silently against it’s bar. It opens to a slit of murky light. She listens… The tick tock drip of some liquid… She opens the door.

A long abandoned tube station. Off the grid. Failing emergency lights flick out meaningless morse codes of light and dark. Water weeps down a living wall of black molds. A chilling air exhales forever from the far tunnel.

On the street, the surveillance camera watches the Tracker. It’s hand hovers over the white washed graffiti. It’s shoulder leans into the door. It too disappears into the darkness as the door seals shut.

On the platform, the woman pulls out her cell. No messages. No calls. Time, 01:23. She looks up. Her eyes haunted. White-blue. She is not here in this place. She senses something…

Something is coming. A rat scatters across the track. A pool of some kind of liquid begins to quake. A distant rumble sounds. A train approaches. The woman sinks into the shadows where the wall meets the platform. She melts skillfully into the darkness. Undetectable. As if she was never really there.

The modern tube hums full speed into the delapitated station. Brakes screech the 5 car length to a full stop. All doors open. No one gets off. No one is on the train.

She waits. Absolutely still. Waits for someone, something. Some sign. Nothing.

“Run.”

A whispered word, her spoken word breaks the silence. Her eyes widen with fear as her hand jumps to shut her mouth. She’s exposed herself from the shadows but her subconscious just triggered what she must do next. Run.

The tube doors close. Breaks release. Engine hums back to life. Continues back on course. The last cars whip out of the station at full speed. All is silent as if it was never there.

No one stirs from the shadows. Her cell phone illuminates with an unknown message arrival. The woman is gone. Her cell discarded in her place. The cell goes dark.

A shadow falls across the cell. The Tracker towers over it.

The Tracker. Concealed in the undertones of an urban somebody and androgynous fashion of a covert nobody. No light reveals a hint of gender. Features hidden in shifting shadows.

The emergency lights continue their play with light and dark. The Tracker against the weeping wall. The tick tock drip of water somewhere other than here.

The platform is empty. The Tracker is gone. Vanished.

Feature Image Credit

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