The New York City pavement was so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk. Bells from bicycles dinged as children rode through the streets. In the distance, the familiar jingle of the ice cream truck played on repeat, exciting the neighborhood kids as it drew closer and closer.
Myles Grace pulled open the back door of a taxi cab, tossing in a dark green duffle bag before climbing in behind it.
The heat coming from the back seat of the cab made their scorching heat outside feel like Antarctica.
“I swear, those kids yelling about that global warming might be onto something. It’s only fucking March!” The cab driver said, his Jersey accent thick.
“Heard this summer’s bringing record-breaking heat.” Myles said as they pulled away from the curb.
The older man looked at Myles in the mirror.
“Lord save us all.” He said.
Pulling out of his parking spot, the man began his journey into the city.
Though the windows were down, the air flowing through the cab did nothing. If anything, the air felt more like a roaring fire than a cool breeze.
“Hey boss, you think we can cut on the AC?” Myles asked, meeting the man’s eyes in the rearview mirror.
The cab came to a stop as they entered bumper-to-bumper traffic.
“Really wish I could, but the fucking things been busted for weeks. Been trying to get the boss man to take care of it but there’s a line.” He said, throwing his hands in the air.
“Jesus.” Was all Myles could offer as a response.
Inch by inch the cab crept closer and closer to Queens. With the cab crawling at a snail’s pace, Myles was sure if he got out and walked he could make it home before this cab even made it to the end of the block. But alas, all his most precious items sat in the trunk of this cab, so that was a no-go.
Looking out the window, he took in the people, buzzing about, hailing cabs, ducking down into the subway station, and going about their lives. This is what he’d been missing, his city.
After being away for six months, filming his latest project, Myles was finally glad to be back in his city, amongst his people.
It took twice as long as it normally does, but Myles finally made it to his neighborhood. With streets filled with kids playing double dutch, basketball, and rollerblade hockey, Myles decided to hop out of the cab at the end of the block and walk.
“Thanks again for the autograph and the picture, my kids are gonna freak!” The cab driver said as he shook Myles’s hand.
“No problem. And tell your boy to keep making those beats! They’re amazing!” He said.
The men waved goodbye to one another and as Myles turned around, one by one, the members of his neighborhood began to greet him.
“Aye Myles! Welcome home man!” Mr. Lake, the local barber shop owner yelled as he stepped outside his shop.
Myles waved hello and asked Mr. Lake to pencil him in for a cut before continuing down the street.
After jumping into both a game of double dutch and shooting a couple of hoops, Myles scooped up his bags and continued on with his journey to his house.
As he arrived at the end of the block, he smiled as he came to a stop in front of the massive blue house. He’d made hundreds of thousands of dollars, and could probably afford a mansion somewhere in the hills of LA, but it would never feel like home; not like this place, not like this city did.
Climbing up the stairs, he heard a scream. Laughing to himself, he paused as the screen door flew open, and out came his wife.
“My baby! You’re home!” She yelled rushing towards him.
Myles had only but a minute to drop his bags before his wife, Maria, leaped into the air and landed in his arms.
Their lips came together as he caught her, and Myles felt himself settle. He was home, back in his city, with his wife and his family.
Maria kissed him long and deep, practically sucking the wind from his lungs, and for Myles, it was the best way to be welcomed home.
“Damn Maria! There are children out here!” Rose, Myles’s mother yelled as she stepped out onto the porch.
Maria kissed her husband a couple more times before dismounting him.
Smiling, Myles climbed the stairs and stood before his mother. She smiled back as she took his face in her hands.
“Honey, you’re disappearing!” She said, stepping back to look at him.
Maria laughed, and before Myles could say a word, his mother was pulling him inside.
“Eddie! Make a plate, Myles is home! He looks like a skeleton with skin!” She yelled, pulling her son through the air conditioned house.
Maria let out another laugh as she set Myles’s bags down and kicked the door closed before joining her husband and mother-in-law in the kitchen.
I hope you liked this first installment of this series. I’m a pantser, so how long this series will be is a mystery. But if you like this first part, be sure to hit that star. I invite you to stick around and check out a couple more stories on the site. And if you like what you see, then consider following the site so you’ll never miss a story. And if you wanna support the site you can do so by buying a cup of coffee. A single cup is four dollars and would go along way in helping out the site. But if you can’t or just don’t want to, that’s fine. Following the site, and following RBN on social media does wonders to help as well. Thank you-C