Writing Prompt #11: High Above The City

Writing Prompt: Do you prefer to take risks or having a safety net?

Katie stood on the edge of the four-story apartment building looking down. She had been at much greater heights but even at this height she felt the adrenaline pumping through her veins. At a young age Katie was afraid of heights and wouldn’t even go on the monkey bars, but now she found heights exciting and she loved standing on the edge of things. She leaned forward a little bit and spread her arms out. She wore a long-sleeved shirt with holes in the sleeves for her thumbs. She wore a pair of athletic shorts and long socks that reached up close to her knees. Her shoulder-length hair blew in the wind and a blue and white scarfed wrapped around her neck dangled a little off her body.

“You’re going to fall if you do stupid stuff like that.”

Katie looked back at the voice. Her friend, Alisabelle was sitting on the roof of the apartment building up against the roof entrance. She took a hit off her e-cigarette and let out a cloud of steam. She wore a sleeveless tee and short jean shorts. She had hair that was shaved on the side and a short Mohawk of purple hair on top.

Katie went back to leaning over the building looking down at the people below. People walking on the sidewalk, cars driving by, and people on bikes not following proper road etiquette.

“Does your mother know you’re here?”

Katie looked back and narrowed her eyes at Alisabelle.

“What my mother won’t hurt her,” Katie said.

Alisabelle took another hit of her e-cigarette. “Little Katie is skipping school and hanging out with the bad kids.”

“What does school teach me that I can’t learn on rooftops or on the streets?”

“Well mathematics and physics first come to mind.”

Katie turned around and jumped down from the edge onto the roof.

“You’re the one who told me to skip school,” Katie said.

“Yeah because school is lame,” Alisabelle said. “Plus my dad says that school brainwashes us to become gay and love whales.”

“You’re dad doesn’t really say that,” Katie said crossing her arms.

“You’re right, he’s a public school principal.”

Katie just shook her head, “Are we going to run or not?”

“Yeah I guess I should work off some of this lung cancer,” Alisabelle said standing up and rocking her body back and forth. She had a ritual of rocking on the balls of her heels before going for a run.

Katie took this moment to do some stretches leaning over and touching her toes. She then raised her arms as high as they go and then unleashed a few punches in the air like she was a boxer hitting a punching bag.

“You’re so strange,” Alisabelle said walking over and rustling Katie’s hair.

Katie slapped Alisabelle’s hand out of the way like she was swatting at flies.

Alisabelle started running starting at the southern part of the building picking up speed as she reached the northern part of the roof. She jumped off the edge of the building and landed on the neighboring building rolling and using her hands to steady herself and push herself back onto her feet and with an amazing speed she continued running.

Katie took a deep breath and shook her shoulders a little bit. She walked back to the southern edge of the building and then took off towards the northern part of the building. Katie leapt off the building jumping a little higher than Alisabelle and landed a little bit harder. She was able to use her hands to push herself up back onto her feet and she remained in a run towards her friend.

Katie could see ahead that Alisabelle was about a building ahead of her. She was leaping up to the neighboring building which was about six feet taller than the building Katie was presently on top of. Katie eventually made it to the building and then leapt upwards grabbing the edge of the building with her fingers. She kicked out her legs and pulled herself up onto the building. This building had a roof covered in gravel.As Katie brushed off the gravel she started to pick up speed again as she crossed the rooftop chasing after Alisabelle.

Alisabelle had the sprinting speed, but Katie was the endurance runner and as they ran over the rooftops, Katie would eventually catch up to her. They eventually made it down from the rooftops to the street level after climbing from rooftop to rooftop over exterior pipes and down windowsills. They landed on the ground with a loud thump.

Alisabelle was breathing hard and Katie felt energized.

“You really should cut down on the lung cancer,” Katie joked.

“It’s been awhile, ok?” Alisabelle starred at Katie.

“Yeah whatever,” Katie said. “Come on, we’re not done yet!”

Katie started picking up speed again and jumped up on a city bench. She rolled forward doing a roll onto her feet. She leaned forward doing a handstand on the side of the bench and then pushed herself doing a flip onto her feet.

“Ta-dah!” Katie said turning around to see Alisabelle’s reaction.

She just stood there for a second not moving. Then it seemed to last a little longer. And longer.

“What’s going on with you?” Katie asked as she walked back towards Alisabelle.

It took a second before Katie realized everything seemed to stop. She looked around and noticed how quiet the world had become. Everything had stopped. People were frozen in place, cars were not moving, and everything seemed to be still. Then in a flash the world seemed to shake a little bit like a mini earthquake and everything started moving.

“Well I’m waiting,” Alisabelle said.

Katie gave her a bizarre look as she shook her head side to side. The sounds of the city hit Katie’s ears as she looked around at the people around her.

“Hello? Earth to Katie. Weren’t you about to do something spectacular?” Alisabelle asked waving her hand in front of Katie’s face.

“What? Huh?” Katie shook her head. “Didn’t you see that?”

“See what?”

It became obvious to Katie that no one else seemed to notice everything coming to a temporary halt.

“Nothing,” Katie said trying to brush off the serious moment.

“You feelin’ ok?” Alisabelle asked. “Maybe the running and climbing got to your head.”

“I’m fine. Don’t worry about it,” Katie said. “Lets go to the skate park and see if there’s anything exciting going on there.”

“Yeah ok whatever,” Alisabelle said pulling out her e-cigarette.

They walked across the street heading towards the skate park on the other side of town. The air temperature was quickly dropping as large, black clouds grew overhead. Small flakes of snow started to fall upon the busy city. No one noticed a small moment where the world seemed to shake again.

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