What kind of fuckery is this?
You made me miss the Slick Rick gig (oh Slick Rick)
You thought I didn't love you when I did (when I did)
Can't believe you played me out like that (Ahhh)
-Me and Mr. Jones by Amy Winehouse
Through the rain, I see something come close to me. The black umbrella that it's holding is preventing the streetlights from letting me see its face. Of course it's a person, a lot taller than me, so it's an older person. A man from the way it's walking and the body shape. He's coming closer to my little alleyway, not pausing for even a second. How was he able to see me from so far away? It is dark in this little alleyway and it's raining, so there's no way that he could make me out. The shadows kept me hidden from any eyes, I know this because so many people have walked right by me, even looked towards me, but none of them saw me.
As he walks closer, I can finally see most of him, including his face. He's old with grey hair and wrinkles. He has a smile on his face as he walks into my little dark, cold, wet alleyway. When he reaches me, he stops with the smile still on his face and his eyes looking directly into mine as my eyes look directly into his. He holds his hand out to me and his lips start moving. I hear nothing of what he says. The only thing I hear is the pitter patter of the rain hitting the street, the buildings, the windows, the sidewalk, his umbrella, my hair, my skin, my clothes. When his lips stopped moving, I raised my hand and grasped it to the old man's. He gently pulled me up to my feet and we stood there for a moment before he started walking onto the sidewalk and away from the little, dark, cold, wet alleyway. Thank you God, for fulfilling one of my requests. Let's see if you can fulfill the other one.
The old man's lips started moving again, but this time I could actually hear what he was saying. "What's your name, little girl?" he asked me.
My name? He asked me for my name? Why in the world would he do that? But, I decided to tell him, not seeing any harm in him knowing the little, tiny, itty bitty bit of information, "I'm Krystal."
"That's a pretty name." he replies as he continues to look down at me with the kind smile resting on his lips, like he knew exactly where he was going and didn't need to look up to see the street signs or any of the people running for shelter, "Now, what's a little girl like you doing out in the rain?"
After he asked that question, my mind started to go into a frenzy. The majority of my mind was screaming at me to not tell him. Screaming at me to let go of his warm and gentle hand and run off. Reminding me that "mother" would yell at me and I would feel a familiar sting in my cheek if I said any more. Reminding me of what "father" did when I just talked to the man that brought papers to the house almost every day. Screaming at me to SHUT UP!!
Then, there was a little bit of my mind that was whispering. I don't know how I could hear it, with most of my mind yelling and screaming, but I could. It was saying to me that this old man was someone that I could trust. That I should tell him whatever he wanted to hear. That he would help me get away from "mother" and "father". That everything will be alright if I went with him, where ever he was going, and telling him why I was out in the rain.
I went with the whispers.
"I like the rain. It's nice." I replied as I looked at his thumb rubbing circles into my knuckles. I guess it was a way to help calm me down. I don't know why he was doing it; I was pretty calm with him, like I have known him my entire life.
"The rain is nice," he said calmly, "but you could catch a cold if you stay out for too long."
"Why would the rain give you a cold?" I asked him, being serious, "It's so nice and kind. It wouldn't do anything like that."
"Who knows?" was his only reply, "All I know is that if we don't dry you off and get you warm, you will get sick and end up in bed for quite a while."
Warm. Like his hand? I guess so. I had been warm, only a few hours ago, in the hotel room my "parents" got for their vacation. It only had one bed, and it was a big bed, big enough to fit all three of us. But they wouldn't let me on last night. They just gave me a blanket and pillow from the closet and told me, "The floor is good enough for you." So I took the itchy blanket and the barely stuffed pillow and went to sleep on the floor. No questions asked. I didn't want to feel my cheek stinging, or my scalp burning, so I didn't say anything as I lied on the solid and stiff floor.
I was brought back to the present when I felt him start to slow down and soon a black car came into my line of sight. My "parents" had told me not to go into stranger's cars, but they also told me not to talk to strangers. And besides, I trusted him. Not because he seemed like the answer to my wish to God, but by the way he smiled and the way he held my hand. It was gentle and he applied just enough pressure so that I knew that he wouldn't let go. It was not at all like "father's" grip. And his smile was natural, not forced at all, and wasn't too big like he was insane, or too small like he didn't really care. Everything about him seemed genuine. And so, I followed right beside him as he took me to the midnight black car. He let go of my hand to pull on the silver handle to open the door.
The old man then looked to me before saying, "Is it alright if I take somewhere where you could dry off?"
No one has ever asked me if I wanted to go somewhere or if it was alright if I could go there, so out of shock, I just nodded my head, the little whisper still above all the screaming.
The old man pulled on the door and kept it open for me. I looked at him for a second, wondering why he was holding open the door. He just smiled down at me, not saying a word. I looked back to inside the car. It was also black. But not as hard as the outside was. It seemed to be a softer look of the same black. None the less, I crawled into the dry area.