The spit smells like tobacco and peppermint, and gnarled teeth foam words foreign to you. “Y’ahll fwum owtta tahhn?” you muffle through a mouth stuffed with cloth. Because these fellas ain’t never seen no “Dakota Shadows” this sharp. Tossed into another room or cellar, your leg tears on a nail sticking out from the stairs. A “Human Voice” becomes distant with each step, and you lay there sweating and breathing hard, bleeding, but not too wet. Smiling you get up about two steps, clench your hands together, and come down hard onto the nail. Caught in the rope binding, you start “Carving” your hands free. Feet next. And thinking about leaving. Never seeing rope or nails or a basement again. Hoping you never saw eyes peering at you through a cracked window. There’s a moment. Breathing.
And from a single chant, other voices quickly form in unison and echo throughout your ears. You untie the bindings around your boots and smash out the window. Being chased now, the “Rain [is] in Our Eyes,” and it’s dark and becoming increasingly harder to keep ahead. You are wet, and your left pant’s leg is a thicker soaked than the right. The chaser has tripped and is grabbing at their stomach violently, and in the house you’re running from, there’s a light in the “Delicate Living Room,” where people stand and stare, you swear, directly at you. But you continue on, toward that high ground, where it’s dry, and the “Antique Horizon” will silhouette a city with street lights. Yet it’s cold, and energy is something less than a mile uphill. Footsteps are getting louder, you’re taking deep breaths, and notice a few blood droplets formed into a heart. “Snow Covered Love,” you think as it’s covered by flakes, and your eyes close. Resting is a good idea. For five minutes.