Double Helix – Short Story Parts V & VI

Today is a double-header. If you’d like to read Part I or Part II or Part III or Part IV just click on them.

Part V
“Ah, Paul,” says the landlord when he opens his door, “haven’t seen you for a while. How’s things?”
“Yeah, you know,” I say.
The landlord and I look at each other. I have no clue what our relationship is meant to be.
“Erm, I seem to have mislaid the key to my apartment,” I say.
The landlord rolls his eyes. He looks like that hunchback guy from The Rocky Horror Picture Show, only his hair is gray.
“Wait a minute,” he says and heads back into his apartment.
I stand outside his door. The dim hallway smells like boiled vegetables. A murmur of voices undulates, punctuated by screams and gunshots from televisions. Some guy to my left coughs up his lungs.
“Here we go,” the landlord says when he returns.
“Thanks,” I say and take the keychain he offers.
I turn and walk away.
“Paul,” the landlord calls.
I stop.
“Paul, you okay?” he asks.
“Yeah, fine,” I say. “Why?”
“You seem edgy.”
“I guess I need some sleep. Haven’t been getting much lately.”
“Later,” I say and walk away.

Part VI
I sweat. Am out of breath. There is no logic to this place. I have walked up and down stairs and corridors for twenty minutes. I cannot find Paul’s apartment. People hang out all over the place. They greet me. I have no idea who they are. I greet back. They ask me where I am going. I tell them I am exercising. They laugh.
I turn another corner and walk down another grim corridor. The cracked numbers on doors are all wrong. I panic. I feel trapped in a maze. Claustrophobic. I need out. Where is the stairwell?
It was back there. There.
As I skip down the flights of stairs it feels like the building collapses around me. I try move faster but slip, then roll down stairs. I get up, eventually outrun the steps and burst into the open world. Hands on my knees, I retch. The phone in my pocket rings.
“Hello,” I say then wipe the vomit from my mouth with my sleeve.
“Yo, Jerry. How we doing?”
“You in yet?”
“No, man. I can’t find his apartment.”
“What you mean?”
“This place is a maze. I can’t find his apartment.”
“You stupid or something?”
“Piss off.”
“Stay where you are. I’ll send Moses.”
“How do you know where…” but he is already off.


20 thoughts on “Double Helix – Short Story Parts V & VI

  1. Pingback: Double Helix Part XII | Scribbla

  2. Pingback: Double Helix – Short Story Part XI | Scribbla

  3. Pingback: Double Helix – Short Story Part X | Scribbla

  4. Pingback: Double Helix – Short Story Part IX | Scribbla

  5. Pingback: Double Helix – Short Story Parts VII & VIII | Scribbla

    1. scribbla Post author

      The two episodes were requested, and I managed to find the time to write them. I hope to continue in that way. Thanks for your feedback.

    1. scribbla Post author

      Thank you for that bit of feedback. It means a lot to me. And thanks for making time to read. I appreciate it so very much.

    1. scribbla Post author

      Oops. Perhaps not as clear as I should have been. Paul is his twin. Because they twins, they would be mistaken from sight.
      Thanks for making that point. And for reading.

  6. Indigo Spider

    I suspect the apartment is another Trojan horse, so to speak, knowing Scribbla and his twists 🙂 Love the tension, building nicely, really makes me yearn for more and more!

  7. Dave "Noobcake" Farmer

    Ooh the story is getting tense now! I want to see what’s inside his brothers apartment and judging from the rather gross apartment block and the people living there I have a feeling it won’t be pretty! Loved the smell of boiled vegetables and the tv noises, very atmospheric!


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