As Arthur walked down the street, the screeching of tires from vehicles passing by him echoed inside his ear. The soft orange colour of the sky told him that it was evening and yet, he still had not returned home. The time of day became more and more apparent when the pavement he was walking on turned from a light blue colour to a dark shade of red, slowly turning into purple. The street lights started turning on, one after another. It was a very cold night in the town of Lische.
Fast food joints and convenience stores littered the once bustling market street, it seems most of the smaller shops had to close their doors. Arthur never liked to buy from large multi national companies and would prefer to go to the local shops instead, sadly nowadays he doesnt have much of a choice. In the small semi-suburban town of Lishe there would be atleast one or two fast food joints and one supermarket everywhere you go.
As convenient as it was, when you see the same thing everyday it can become terribly boring. Arthur suddenly felt a sharp pain in his stomach, follwed by a low growl. He was hungry. A few hours ago he finished his work, having skipped lunch today his stomach was empty by the time he ended, so he went out looking for a restaurant before going home. Now he roamed all over the town looking for any decent food. His stomach continued to rumble as he walked along the paths of the never ending market street.
The sun was setting and his shadow grew longer. Eventhough he knew that there was no more food at home, he couldn't bother to buy groceries. It was too much of a hassle just to eat. Even if he bought groceries, his knowledge of cooking was very limited. He could barely crack an egg, much less cook one for that matter!
Even as it got harder and harder to find decent food, Arthur didnt feel like going to a Fast food restaurant, he had practically eaten at every single joint in town and they all tasted the same. He wanted something that was atleast decent to munch on. He was as stubborn as he was persistant.
While walking down the street sometimes people would take long glances at Arthur and he would certainly notice. You cant blame them, Arthur was someone who simply stood out, he had long hair and was taller than average your average person. His clothes looked expensive but in actuality he bought them on a sale at the local thrift store. If you were meeting him for the first time you'd expect him to be very mature but once you spend even a minute with him that image of a mature man quickly falls apart, sleeping whenever he felt like, never cleaning his house and keeping his patchy facial hair saying "Im trying to grow a beard!" when actually its just an excuse to get out of shaving. It's a mystery how he even manages to get up for work on time. But for somebody in his late twenties you could say he was doing well for himself.
It was getting colder by the second and it was getting harder to stand it. Arthur, argued over and over with himself whether or not he should pursue what could be a fruitless endeavor in search of a decent meal to satiate his deep hunger or go to Mcdonalds. He finally decides to give in to the temptations of convenience store food, atleast it was something other than his regular dinner.
Making his way to the bright pink and yellow building, he thought about what he should buy there. But that thought was rudely interrupted when a chilling breeze engulfs him. Arthur pulls his hat down and digs his hands deep into his pockets as far as they would go in an attempt to keep himself warm and the wind out of his eyes. There was no way he would make it home alive without taking shelter somewhere for the night. He never anticipated the weather would be this cold tonight.
Even if Arthur managed to get home through this weather, his house was a complete mess. Barren of any life and most importantly, food. Depressing, but he couldn't blame anybody but himself, no one would want to live with piles and piles of finished and unfinished art pieces scattered everywhere in a small messy rectangular apartment, not even ants or spiders woul want to live there..maybe lizards would.
Arthur walks with his head down after thinking about the current status of his apartment. Staring at the floor as he walked Arthur racked his brain trying to remember which way was the convinience store, he reached a traffic light and stopped to look up. When he looked up he noticed a strange void like shadow stretching long across the pavement to his right. So far that he couldn't see what was making it. It was strange, what could be making such a long shadow. Arthur followed it, putting off his hunger to satisfy his curiosity and who knows maybe it'll be worth it. He might be able to last abit longer before his stomach collapses in itself.
He walks all the way down the street, determined to find out what was making that shadow. While going down he noticed that other people didnt seem to care about the strange shadow, even though it was definitely out of place. Arthur had lived in Lishe for only a year so maybe this was a common occurence here. The sun was just about to set and the shadow started to disappear, luckily Arthur was about to arrive at is destination.
The sun had completely disapeared from the sky and the lampposts along the path as well as a few shops and stores gave off most of the light to illuminate the street. From afar Arthur could see a small blurry silhouette. When he got closer he figured out what was making the shadow, It was a dark green metal sign which was hanging perpendicular to a wooden doorway with olive highlights. Paint was peeling off the door way and the metal sign looked rusty. It had a very welcoming feeling from the outside, but walking anywhere near the doorway, made Arthur feel like he was being sucked into a black hole.
How could such a small sign make such an elongated shadow. Arthur thought. It was definitely peculiar to say the least no other signs in the area casted such a shadow. So why this one in particular? That sign was really out of place too. Where multi-million dollar companies made large fluorescent 3d signs and tacky logos to attract consumers, there was a metal plate with small gold writing, the bare minimum as a sign. Well it was kind of unexpected but seeing such an old fashioned sign in a place like this was somewhat anticipated, It was an old town afterall, theres many buildings being reused and repurposed even since way back. Arthur was sure most of the smaller shops had closed down and he wasn't able to recognise this sign either.
Nevertheless Arthur found hope again. He might be able to eat some decent food. Hopefully they would be serving at this time.
“I might as well see what this place is all about,” Arthur said to himself. He stepped forward and cracked his head up to read the sign properly. It read,
Walking up to the doorway he was greeted to an ominous staircase; there was no gate nor was there any door in sight. It looked just like a normal staircase. Arthur went straight in without suspicion or hesitation. Maybe he was trying to escape the cold. When Arthur stepped into the doorway the shadow that stretched itself across the street came back to the sign like a measuring tape reeling back it's metal tip, this was unkown to Arthur. Now the sign had no shadow whatsoever, not even the lights from the lampposts or the shops affected it.
The staircase was cramped and seemed to go on forever. Arthur thought If he were to fall backwards right now he could break every single bone in his body. The walls on each side of the staircase were decorated with both new and old photos, posters as well as some flyers and ads. The steps were covered in scratch marks and were worn out, everything about this staircase looked like they were there before the place was even built. Arthur was having mixed emotions about this place, it was both creepy and comfortable. He wanted to stay just as much as he wanted to leave, the feeling of indecisiveness reminded him of when he had to choose between his passion or his family. Perhaps it was the contrast between the convenience stores and the fast food chains nearby or the fact that in a place where mostly teenagers and “young” adults came, there was some hint of maturity and in it hope for good food.
Lost in his thoughts Arthur found himself brought back into reality when he tripped at the last step of the stairs, thinking there were more. A yellow light above him illuminated the small platform floored with a red hardwood. There was barely any room to move, only just enough space for him to walk straight and turn. The closely packed hallway was painted with even more posters and flyers, increasing in their amount the closer they were to the door which he assumed to be the entrance to this odd restaurant.
At the end of the hallway the supposed entrance was labelled with the exact same metal sign from before.
Arthur's nose caught the smell of a wonderful aroma coming from behind the door. Now he knew for sure that this was a restaurant and not some historical landmark from the past or some secret fight club. He eagerly turned the door knob and not even a second passed before...
The door bursts open and a massive gust of wind escapes out the door and into the hallway, almost ripping the door right off its hinges. Arthur was shocked, wailing out in surprise! it was as if he had just opened an air plane door midflight. He kept holding the doorknob tightly while trying to regain his ground, his clothes were almost blown away by the wind. It nearly tore them apart completely, the posters and flyers flapped and danced around the air spinning in circles. Most of them flew off while some stayed held up by glue that somehow was able to withstand the wind. The door started to bend and the floor boards were raising all the while the wind didnt stop. He panicked, what was he supposed to do in this situation, he was never prepared for something like this. All Arthur could do was hold onto the door knob and keep his feet planted. As strong as the wind was, Arthur had to fight back.
Using all his might Arthur tried to close the door. He tried many times and finally succeeded. Closing the door, stopped the wind. Everything fell silent, the rustling of papers subsided and the floor boards went back into their respective place in the floor. With his clothes now ruffled and his entire being in a mess, he tidied himself up and places his hand on the door knob once again. He didn't manage to get a good look of the inside but he did briefly saw the glow of orange lights. Arthur hesitated, but he wasn"t the type to give up so easily once hes dedicated. With his coat, white dress shirt and red tie. He turned the doorknob once again and opened the door as he did he screamed his heart out like a soldier entering battle, however this time he was greeted by something different.