I steal one glance over my shoulder as soon as we are far from the foreboding luminance of the neon glow, and it is there that my stomach leaps into my throat. Squatting just shy of the light and partially concealed by the shade of an alley is a sinister silhouette beneath a crimson cowl, beaming a demonic smile which spans from cheek to swollen cheek.
Abandoned.The word alone sends shudders down a sensitive spine, troubling the thoughts of pained souls as their hurt swells in ripples. It is a sentence of undesired solitude often pronounced on the innocent, the trusting; administered without warning or satisfactory cause. One day the moon is yours, or so you believe. The next, his countenance transforms from Jekyll to Hyde with no intention of ever turning back, and you are left trampled upon in a deserted street, concealed by dirty fog that squelches all illumination or any hope for future rays of light. It is the worst of mysteries why a beast considered noble would forsake his duty, exhibiting a heart of stone. And all who once looked on him, now turn down their eyes and suffer, beguiled. Some poisons have no antidote, but are slow, silent, torturous ends that curl up the broken body swept into a cold, dark corner. There she is left to drown in her tears; a dying heart.Abandoned.
I left the library. Crossing the street, I was hit head-on by a brutal loneliness. I felt dark and hollow. Abandoned, unnoticed, forgotten, I stood on the sidewalk, a nothing, a gatherer of dust. People hurried past me. and everyone who walked by was happier than I. I felt the old envy. I would have given anything to be one of them.
So he bought tickets to the Greyhound and they climbed, painfully, inch by inch and with the knowledge that, once they reached the top, there would be one breath-taking moment when the car would tip precariously into space, over an incline six stories steep and then plunge, like a plunging plane. She buried her head against him, fearing to look at the park spread below. He forced himself to look: thousands of little people and hundreds of bright little stands, and over it all the coal-smoke pall of the river factories and railroad yards. He saw in that moment the whole dim-lit city on the last night of summer; the troubled streets that led to the abandoned beaches, the for-rent signs above overnight hotels and furnished basement rooms, moving trolleys and rising bridges: the cagework city, beneath a coalsmoke sky.
Certainly, the terror of a deserted house swells in geometrical rather than arithmetical progression as houses multiply to form a city of stark desolation. The sight of such endless avenues of fishy-eyed vacancy and death, and the thought of such linked infinities of black, brooding compartments given over to cob-webs and memories and the conqueror worm, start up vestigial fears and aversions that not even the stoutest philosophy can disperse.