Five oÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ clock. I sit here in my office on the second floor of a rusty old building in New York. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂLights out!..ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ blurts the janitor, barging into my office and my thoughts. It has been a quiet day. Slowly, I got up like a stoned man, picked up my fifty dollar hat and left my personal office, the door of which read ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂJonny Small, DetectiveÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ written in large bold letters on the rough, translucent glass window. CindyÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs standing outside the building, so I have to be very quiet and as sneaky as possible. If Cindy catches me, IÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂm going to be stuck in front of the office door for at least thirty minutes. Luckily, she did not notice me slip into the darkness behind her and walk towards my house into the darkness of the streets of New York City. I donÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt know what people see in me, but for as long as I can remember, my life has been perfect.
It seems that everything works out perfectly for me. I walk by the ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂNitetime BarÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ, the only classic old fashioned bar in the new technology year of 2013. I see my reflection in the mirror. I am a pretty well built man, standing a little over 6 feet with broad shoulders and a square chin. I want to stop by the bar and get a drink, but there is an uneasy feeling in me. I turn toward my home and walk faster now. While I was admiring myself in the bar mirror, I had a sudden feeling deep inside me about somethingÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦almost like a sixth sense. Outside the apartment building, I was still waiting for the elevator and when it finally arrived, I started pushing the button for my floor frantically. My apartment door was open and there was broken glass scattered on the floor. I was very nervous and ran through the door only to find everything perfectly placed except for a few broken picture frames. The three room apartment looked deserted. The bare walls are which were initially covered with wallpaper were stripped off. The window was open and the cold air struck my face like a whip. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂWhere is she? Where is she?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ There was no sign of Alice, my wife, anywhere in the living room. The kitchen seems to be in place and untouched. The bedroom was in turmoil. Picture frames and pictures lay on the floor and Alice lay on the bed. Her smooth dark hair covered her head completely and spread all the way down to her waist. I realized she was crying and walked over to her to try to comfort her and find out what had happened.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂWhyÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂre ya cryin baby? ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦Alice, whatÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs wrong?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂItÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs just thatÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ she starts off with a strong voice like she always does.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦I was going through our old picturesÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦andÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦and,ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ her voice is now quivering. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂI canÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt find a single picture of you when you were youngÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦Up till now, I have not realized it, but now IÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂm scared of thinking who I have married and if I took a wrong turn when I married you.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ Her words struck me like poisonous thorns. It was not physical anger that I felt, but it was the emotional distress and hopelessness that hurt me the most. How could she even have thought about such a thing, after all I had done for herÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦this is the return I got for being a good husband. But I couldnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt say a word and I let her continue.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂWho are you?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ she said in a suspicious and disgraceful voice.
I could not answer the question and she repeated it. How could I answer a question I did not know the answer to myself? How could I be so fearful of her question? I could not bear it any longer. The point of no return had arrived and I had no other choice but to find out about my past. I stormed out of the rusty old apartment complex into the white snow covered streets of New York city. Frankly, I had no idea where I was going to start and what I was going to start for. I have been a successful detective for three years now, but I didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt have a clue about my pastÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ New York city and its people, could they help me in my quest for my past? I was wandering around hopelessly. I didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt know what to do and where to start. Somehow, I landed back in the ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂNitetime barÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ. Chuck was on the counter serving people like anything.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂHey Chuck, pass me a Budlight man.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂHey Jonny, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂong time no see. One Bud cominÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ right up private-eyeÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂBusy night eh?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYea, been busy tÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂnite. So how ya been?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂDoinÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ fineÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦just fineÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I was in no mood to talk so I turned away showing Chuck my back. I got up and walked over to an empty booth. My bud showed up in about five minutes, carried by a new girl.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYaw Bud, suhÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ,ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ she said in a sweet but stern tone ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYou new hea?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I asked in a dumb way She was a blonde, about five feet nine. She was dressed in green overalls but underneath I could see her flimsy shirt and tights.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYeaÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦say, arenÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt you that Jonny Small the detective guy. YouÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂre across the street huh? Heard bout what happened to yaÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦real unfair.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I did not know what she was talking about. What was unfair? What happened to me? Who am I? The question that Alice had asked me rose again in my mind. I turned to take out some money from my coat to give to the waitress, but I turned back to see nobody there. What was happening to me? First my wife, now hallucination. I didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt know what to believe. I needed answers, and I needed them fast. I started thinking about my past making up my childhood as I pleased. I drifted into my thought and did not notice an old man approach my booth until he knocked over my beer on me. I rose up, partly astounded and partly angry. I thought this action would attract attention but all it did was dust. There was no one in the bar except me and the old man who sat across me.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂWho are you? Why the hellÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂd you knock over my beer?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ My voice traveled all the corners of the bar and finally screamed back at me.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂCalm down and have a seat sonny.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ His low tone was smooth and effective and I felt myself sitting back down. The man was, as I guessed, in his mid 70s. His wrinkled face was white with either old-age or the cold weather. He didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt have much hair except for the little thickets right above the side burns. The way the light from the bar counter fell on him was dramatic. All I could see was this manÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs white head, nothing else. The detective that I am, I didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt think this man was trustable.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂI know about your past.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ The words that came out of his mouth were like hot cocoa in a winter night. The words were smooth and soothing. But it struck me that this man could be a con artist, who had somehow read my mind and was now trying to rip me off by selling me some lie about my past that I had no recollection of. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂDonÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt worry, IÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂm not going to lie to you. I donÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt want your money or anything in return. HereÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ he handed me a business card. I flipped it over and saw an address written on it, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦go to this address and your questions might be answered. Better hurry, its going to be a long walkÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂBut how do I know youÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂre not some conÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I talked to an empty booth, and looked up to see him gone. Something struck my shoulder. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂHey Jony-jon, you okay?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ Chuck asked me in a concerned tone. It was all a dreamÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦but a dream that left a business card with me, with an address on the other side. Something was going on, and I had to find out what it was.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ As I walked out of the bar, my head was overloaded with un-answered questions. The thick snow made it difficult to walk, but I had to go on. I had to go to the address on the card and get answers to the questions left un-answered by many, the answers which could turn my world around.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ The place was about two miles, or as I guessed based on my geographical knowledge of New York, and since there were no taxis running during the snow, I had to walk all the way. As I approached the building, I heard a noise behind my back. I turned around and got hit on the head by something very heavy. It was some punk who mugged me. If only it was daylight, I could have put that kid behind bars for at least a lifetime for assault on a cop. I felt dizzy and cold, my vision went blurry to black and I kissed the ground with a thud.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ I opened up my eyes to see lying under a roof and not a pile of snow. I had been carried in some building where poor, homeless people lived. I estimated I had been out cold for about 15 minutes. I still felt that lump on my forehead, but I had to go on and find the place which probably contained my answers. As I tried to get up, a man pushed me back down on the broken, old, rugged bed.
ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂSit down!ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ he commanded in a stern voice, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂyouÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂre not that strong of a cop.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ HowÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂd he know I was a cop when all my id was in my wallet that had been stolen from me.
ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂSoÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦Small is it. I knew youÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂd beÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ he started off his conversation and acted like a barrier between me and my destiny.
ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂJonny SmallÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I interrupted his chit-chat, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦thatÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs my name.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYea, yea whatever. NameÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs CarthÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ what kind of a name was Carth, but then again, I kept my judgment to myself, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂHeard you were gonna come so I prepared a lilÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ someÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂin for yo. Here have someÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂo thisÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ he handed me a bowl soup but looked more like water and coloring added together, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦itÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs mahÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ specilty.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt want to disrespect the guy so I took some and tasted it, didnÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂt taste that bad either. How did he know I was coming? Who is this guy and what can he tell me about my past life? ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂSo Jonny, whatÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂd ya think IÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂm going to tell ya?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ, I was going to answer the question but he continued on, ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYour pastÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs real interestinÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ Jonny boy...ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ It had been only about two hours since I stormed out of my apartment, Alice and my life, and already I was going to start finding out about my past.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂThere was a time when people like did our own workÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦not like the world you see around you now.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ He started off sounding weak and feeble, but I believe remembering the past made him feel stronger and thus he was getting more and more confident of what he was talking about. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂWe did not have this kind of technology back thenÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦when I was young, bout your age, technology had come only to the point of pig cloningÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦and look, now we can even clone machines.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂBut what does all this history crap have to do with me!?!ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I blurted out in frustration and suspense.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂYou wanna know the truthÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦here it is. Your mother and father were scientists. They made a very happy and not to mention successful couple. The only thing, and you may be shocked or amazed by thisÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦the only thing they did not have the ability to do, was have a childÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦Yes, it is true. In a lab experiment gone wrong, your mother and father lost their abilities.ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂThen why do you still call those people my mother and my father?ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ I was confused, and a detective does not like being confused. I wanted clarity and straightforward answers.
Suddenly, everything was silent, like everything was listening, waiting for the answer. The world around me had turned into and audience who Carth and me were entertaining. But Carth was quiet too. ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂWhat is it!!! Why are you quiet, answer me? What is my past? Who are these people you call my parents? Who am I? I need an answer now!ÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ My patience was running out, I pulled him towards myself through his collar. But his dead and limp face did not budge. He did not say a word. The silence was piercing through my skin, through my body. I could not bear it any longer. I felt like my head was going to blow up because of the millions of questions that arose inside me. All I wished for right then was answers from CarthÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦it was too much information disguised in the form of nothing from my past.
ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ ÃÂÃ Say itÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦say itÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦tell me my past, I will make my future, I kept saying to myself. Say itÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂ¦say it...but before he could say anything, i heard something and Carth fell on his face...bleading. He had been shot and my past was still a mystery to me.