I was low-energy for over a month

the kind of slow-moving slug that gets out of bed

and goes to work.

My clothes collected on the floor

My fast-food containers mounted in the sink

My weight increased by 10 pounds

My delusion that it was muscle, because I lift 30 minutes a day

Then I remembered… I used to take a B vitamin. So, I swallowed one

and I had instantaneous energy at 8 PM

I had to go for a run, or I would explode

I ran just as fast as I used to—and I felt like a black stallion at night

but then I saw unsavory characters

they weren’t there, last year. Guys in skullies and jean jackets

I went deep into the woods, on the forest path, in the pitch darkness

and when I turned around, I walked for a while, staring at the lights from expensive houses

enjoying the cold, crisp, clear night

with the stars twinkling overhead

Then I heard feet on the trail—it’s amazing what the night does to your other senses

and I made-out the black outline of a man in a sweatshirt and a hoody

Instantly, I knew he was a threat

It was instinct—how he walked, and he lined himself up to me, in my direction

He was coming at me, and fast

“Hey! Do you have cash on you?” He asked.

“Yeah!” I said.

“Well—give it to me!”

By this time, he was within a foot. I didn’t move, and I wasn’t afraid, but I was jacked-up on adrenaline. Being mugged was a new experience for me. I quickly thought of the movies I’d watched with this scenario. Act intimidating…yeah. And make him piss his pants…yeah. And do the unexpected. You have a right, because he came at you… okay.

“You’re gonna have to take it!” I said.

“What?”

“You heard me.”

Out came his knife. It glinted in the moonlight. But he backed up, when he pulled it out.

I took two steps toward him, and he backed up again. Then I lunged, and he ran. It was a bluff, on my part. It made me feel like a wild animal—the adrenaline kept me awake for five hours. I cleaned my apartment to perfection, and shouted, and smiled, and enjoyed myself—my life that was tested. Maybe I have balls? I thought. Then I went hiking with a co-worker the next day, and we talked about a lot of things.

“You ever been in a fight?” He asked.

“No,” I lied.

12 thoughts on “Death Wish in Maple Valley

      1. Thanks for clarifying. The mother of my kids was with my eldest son who was just an infant and mugged by two guys with a gun. She gave him the baby clothes she had just bought and left frantic on the public transport.
        I like your imagination with this story.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. When did you come here? Where abouts are you?
        Bogotá has some nice parts and it took me 12 years to work that out. But the climate and general stress of the city is bad.
        Colombia moreover should be a tourist Mecca. How it’s not a rich country is due to the obvious.

        Liked by 1 person

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