Published by Brad Chambers at Smashwords
Copyright 2011 Brad Chambers
Edited by Jessica Chambers
Smashwords Edition, License Notes
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The door creaked painfully on its corroded hinges as Bob forced it open. Dust and bits of rust floated on the air in front of his face, but he couldn't see them in the dim reflected light of the street lamps. Stepping out onto the wet gravel of the roof, his second step was in a puddle of water that splashed onto his socks and trickled down into his shoes. He pushed the door almost shut, but not enough to latch it, then trudged slowly across the tar and rock till he was standing next to the waist high parapet. Looking through the fog at the empty street below, he sighed, tightened his coat, pulled his worn fedora down low over his eyes, and sat down on an old wooden crate. He was surprised the crate was still there. It had been months since he had been up here, but it was all the same. The exhaust fans making a constant background hum, the air conditioning compressors kicking on and off. He heard the occasional clicking of the switches in the elevator room accompanied by the sound of the motor running as it spooled the cables up and down.
Reaching into the left pocket of his long trench coat, he pulled out a wrinkled pack of cigarettes and with a tap against his other hand slid a smoke from it and clasped it loosely in his lips. Dropping the pack back into his coat he fished around in the right hand pocket for his old Zippo lighter. Flipping it open and working the wheel, the flame lit his tired features for a couple of seconds as he inhaled the warm smoke. Closing the lighter, he rubbed his thumb across the engraving on the front of it for a second and then dropped it back into his coat pocket. Taking a deep drag on the cigarette, he leaned back against the old relief hood and closed his eyes as he blew the smoke out in a steady stream from his lips. What a day it had been.