Fight to Survive, Vincent, Part 1

Vincent Miller was spending a very cold, cloudy day in his stuffy, cluttered dorm room, reluctantly making progress on his philosophy reading, finding ample distractions from work on his computer. He was vaguely listening to a movie, checking his facebook and his email, and, overall, not making much headway.

He looked at his email, and there was a new all-student email, titled "BITE OUT OF CRIME!!!" Intrigued by the title, he opened the email. Enclosed was a link to a video which Vincent opened. The screen flashed as a news reporter talking about a robbery of a store spoke into the camera. She was standing still, when suddenly a man tackled and bit her in the arm.

"Oh, my God!" exclaimed Vincent, as he jumped back at the sudden attack. Even as he reacted, the crew and police at the scene pulled people off of the poor woman. "Jesus, what's wrong with people these days?"

He closed the window down and returned to his email screen. A student info email read "Important Message for All Students." Vincent opened the email, and began to read it.

Dear Student Body,

There have been reports on campus of students being attacked by person/persons unknown. We do not know who is responsible, but a few students have been taken from the Health Center to Columbus Hospital for serious injuries. They are not in critical condition, but their injuries were too severe to be treated here. We advise all students to be exercise caution when walking around campus; go in groups, try not to be out late, and spend as little time outside as is necessary. Please report any suspicious behavior that you see to Safety and Security. Stay safe.

Sincerely,

Diane Theaton

Campus Affairs

"What the hell is going on?" Vincent asked to no one in particular. He shook his head and tried to get back to his work. He found he couldn't get the image of that man attacking that reporter out of his head. He got up from his chair, deciding that Aristotle simply wasn't captivating enough to continue reading.

Throwing on his heavy black coat, his gloves and hat, Vincent steeled himself for the strong wind that was sure to be biting at him as soon as he went outside. Finding his way onto the path, he decided to go to the Church for a while to sing, think, and possibly read up on the Opium War in China for his history class.

The beauty of his college struck him as it always did as he trekked his way over hard, slick, heavily trodden-on snow. The snow darting all around him made it hard to keep his eyes open, but it didn't stop him from trying, as he took in the quaint little village of Gambier. The small post office across the road, Middle Path, the long, straight, gravel-strewn walkway running from the far North of the campus to the very South, the warm, inviting bookstore with the many novels and gifts in its windows, and Middle Grounds, the popular café frequented by so many of the students and faculty. Before starting this, the second semester of his freshman year, Vincent knew Kenyon College was where he was meant to be.

As he walked along the sidewalk, Vincent heard someone call his name.

"Matt, how are you?" Vincent asked, recognizing his friend and classmate.

"I'm great. Hey, did you see that allstu about the reporter getting bit?" Matt asked, bewildered.

"Yeah, I did see that, freaked me out. Where was that?"

"Columbus, I think. It was on the front page of the Dispatch."

"No kidding? I should try to find a copy…"

"Yeah, hey, listen," Matt cut him off, "I have to go, but you wanna do something tonight? There's a party going on in one of the dorms, and I'd like to go."

"Sure thing," Vincent replied, pushing the growing mountain of his homework to the back of his mind, "I'll meet you… outside the church? Tonight at…"

"The thing's at 9:00, so I'll meet you at quarter 'til?"

"Sounds like a plan," finished Vincent, "I'll see you later."

Vincent arrived at the church and walked in, welcoming the shelter from the now howling wind, which had picked up considerably during his conversation. Taking off his coat, gloves and hat, he pushed up his sleeves and pulled out the bench at the piano, and began to play a few small songs he knew, singing to the tall, empty building, with its many stained glass windows, painted, arching walls, and old, creaking structures. After several minutes of playing, he decided to try to read some of his history.

Sitting down on the red-carpeted steps to the altar, he leaned back and opened his book. While he was reading, he felt himself drifting off to sleep. Vincent tried his best to stay awake, but the harder he tried, the more his eyes closed, and, finally, he gave up and let himself drift off.