Metropolis - By Ian Duncan
A person here, a car there, the abandoned snow-covered streets rest through the night . . . desolate . . . recharging. Polluted water drips from steep ice-coated rooftops in the alley to the shadows below . . . where he waits.

Headlights!

A boy emerges from the darkness, abdicating his secluded refuge which protects him from the chilling wind, to present and offer himself. A street lamp reveals his enticing young body to potential customers. He waits.

The car slows down and passes. Sharp hungry eyes peer from its dark interior, assessing what's for sale. Then it's gone, his last chance for the night. Another night alone, hidden in the alley.

An end to it all seems fantastic, an impossible dream. He'll be here forever; he knows it. The fear has faded over the years, but the streets still hold their domination over him, binding his commitment to them with empty promises and unrealised hope.

Rotting bricks resist the sudden thrust of his frail back against the wall. He falls, sliding down into the snow where his tears have already landed. He lies there alone, staring up at the dark grey sky, absorbed in its sluggish journey over the city skyline.


His tiny heart beats in the silence.


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