C'mon... ride with me for a few minutes. Just down the trail and back to my house. You won't be gone long, I promise.
First picture your ride. Build your bicycle from memory or imagination or both if you like. Maybe one you saw in a movie once, maybe one you owned only in a wish. Maybe it's cherry red with cards in the spokes, maybe it's jet black with a pair of white fuzzy dice hanging off the handlebars... maybe it's the color of your first love's eyes. Okay good, now pull up next to me. Do you screech the brakes sliding to a halt or come out of nowhere behind me with the speed of a whisper? Either way you're here in Terminus with me now. We got a hazy full moon's glow stained across the clouds above. A crisp chill in the air as well, feeling similar to emerging out of a pool dive back into a restless summer wind. In other words a perfect evening... so let's go.
Coming in off the junction of Freedom Parkway and Boulevard keeping the bright skyline to our backs. At the entrance of the trail a tall scarecrow of a man smiles at our approach with only one row of teeth. He waves a hand holding a plastic grocery bag that is leaking with an indeterminate liquid. He yells for us to stop. Ignore him! This is but only one of the City Night's many toll-keepers and vagrant sentrys. We break formation, flank past him on each side and reemerge gliding down the dark trail. Freedom Parkway is on our left, flowing by us with currents of late night commuters. To the right a row of new houses peek nervously over their backyards. This is a nice down hill glide down. The trail is sparsely lit with the few lamps not blinking or blown out. No worries. The corners are soft and you can ride the slight hills on momentum alone if you want. Now hitting the overpass... a flock of skate boarding teenage boys are crouched off to the side, holding their boards before them like shields and watching us pass with blank scrutiny. Now over the bridge that runs over dead rail road tracks. You spot someone walking down them in the distance... but only long enough to wonder if you really saw anyone at all... but pick up speed quick. We're approaching the Ghost Spot, where I was visited one late night by an apparition an hour before finding out about my Grandma going in to the hospital. I pedal this part with a fury... try and keep up. Rounding around the blindspot, bursting out of the patch of blackness that hangs over it. In a few moments we ride through where Sherman watched the Battle of Atlanta. Uphill from here, but gradual and slow, demanding just enough effort to sharpen the senses. Look around you... notice the trees still winter bare... except the first blooms of Dogwoods whose white petals glow electric gold under the lamps. We're approaching the Highlands now... where we bank right and snake-sneak in through the backway to Little Five. Take the road cautious... cars tend to come barreling around the corners with drunks fresh out of the bars. Slow down some... we're going to slide through the gates and we'll catch the super hero mural behind the old Criminal Records that I showed you earlier. Now pop back over behind the Vortex and emerge onto the Square. L5P is a ghost town tonight. The pizza veranda hosting a modest couple. A few strays sit crosslegged against the red wall watching us from the depths of mountain beards and caves of hoods.
... we're cruising down Moreland, US23... past the Chevron, the Masonic Academy, the empty lots and mysterious houses then... a few turns here, a few turns there...
...drifting down a little side street. Rows of old homes and empty lawns patroled by the tribe of cats that secretly rule over my little hill of Avenue. Know that we travel safely only by their blessings!
Okay, this is me... the Witch House.
I'd invite you up but Vee just got off work and I promised her a dinner of hot-dogs on nan bread and candy bars.
But look, I had a great time riding with you. You know you're way back from here, right? Cool. So, I'll catch you later... and maybe we can do this again sometime.