Something is closing in, something is going to happen.
I just got back from a road trip with my dad. He had to go down to Hobbs to do some training with the Fire Department there. They have a nice training facility behind Station 3, and he was taking an entry level arson investigation class. It was going to be Friday, Saturday and Sunday. So he got me out of school for Friday, picked me up at lunch on Thursday and we headed south.
It’s a pretty long drive to get down there, about six hours. Hobbs is down in the southeast part of New Mexico. The drive is pretty barren and, in places, feels like you’re going to drive off the face of the earth or into another dimension of time.
The hard part is, you have to drive through Lovington to get there, our old home town. We don’t actually drive through it, we just sort of skirt around the fairgrounds and then hook up with the highway again south of town. It’s another twenty minutes to Hobbs.
Before we left, I used Google and Yelp to try and look up some things to do. There’s not a whole lot going on in Hobbs, but it’s better than it used to be. Hobbs is an oil town and it’s been booming again for a while. It’s grown a lot over the past ten years, at least that’s what my dad tells me. I don’t remember it much.
I found an odd thing on Google. I found a listing for a bookstore. This bookstore didn’t look like the usual Barnes and Noble megastore or mom and pop, bread and butter kind of place. It looked more like the kind of place where you would find Tarot cards and palm reading guides and incense and meditation books. Maybe even some edgier things.
I’ve been feeling more and more uneasy lately, like something’s closing in or something’s going to happen. Not just these sensations and visions I’ve had about other people and their impending misfortune. This is something closer and I’m not entirely sure yet that it’s evil. It’s more, just, there.
But I feel like I need to know more about it. There’s got to be something, someone, somewhere that can help me. I thought this bookstore might be the place. So, while my dad was in class, I drove around town for a little while until I could get up the nerve to go looking for it. Finally, I headed down toward Broadway, which used to be the heart of downtown in the ‘50s and ‘60s. Now, it’s kind of a scattered collection of low-end shops.
I finally found the address on a block of Broadway that had what looked like a mini-mall in it. Back in the corner was a small shop with a suite number over it that matched the one I’d memorized for the bookstore. It was empty.
It was dark and closed up and dusty. It looked like it had been unused for a long time. I stood in front of the display window, looking at my dusty reflection, and all of a sudden, I wasn’t looking at me anymore. I was looking at a woman, a woman I knew from a long time ago. It took me a second to realize it was Alayna, my Uncle Brayden’s old girlfriend.
I haven’t seen her since my mom died. I have no idea where she is, but there she was, in the dusty window, looking out at me. Then, just as quickly, she was gone, and my own face was looking back at me, with an expression of shock. And I remembered that she had a bookstore in Hobbs when I was a kid, when we were still in Lovington. I’d heard both Uncle Brayden and my mom talk about it.
That must’ve been the place. Now I know who could have answers for me. It’d be Alayna. But I have no idea how to find her or if she’s even alive. And that…sucks.