Something About This City

I didn’t bring a camera. That’s for tourists.

And we’re not tourists. We’re not here for a vacation. This is business. Prep work, actually, getting the feel of the area before we have to come here on Real Business. My gut tells me that the real business will be tricky enough without us getting lost.

(They say it’s hard to get lost here, because everything’s built on a grid. But they don’t have a partner who heads north based on which direction feels colder to him.)

New York City. The Big City. The “city that never sleeps”.

Or is that Vegas? Isn’t New York the “Happiest Place on Earth”?

“No, I think that’s Disneyland.” My partner was watching TV on his bed. I was doing it again. Talking out loud.

They call it monologues. I had started breaking out in them a few hours after we got off the train. Something here. Something in the air, the architecture, something made me…

Hard-boiled.

It was good to know this, before we came here for the job. It wouldn’t do to be sneaking up on a target, then suddenly realizing I’ve been announcing our presence with terse, descriptive narration.

The Wall Sumo across the street, he looked like he understood. That’s a man who knows how to be a professional. Just like us. And just like us, the professionalism paid off against his opponents. He knew what it was like to stoically recieve the slogging, tearful fellatio of the loser…

“Dude, WHAT?”

Goddamn it, I was doing it again. Something about this city.

Wall Sumo, he understood.

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Josh Hechinger is a future writing superstar/cautionary tale. He lives in Pennsylvania.

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