The Watcher, a Chicago Tale
Three weeks into the future:
Winston Logan gazed out the glass wall of his 60th floor suite into the moonlight, trying to make out the lakeshore ten miles away. He looked for the flash of a massive explosion and wondered how hard the concussion would shake his building.
In the present:
Lit by neon signs from closed stores, blue and yellow rain hits the sidewalk and flows along the curb before swirling down an iron grate. Apartments above cast a warm sheltering light, flickering with silhouettes. Up the street on the corner, steam rises from under an illuminated red and yellow umbrella of a hot dog vendor. Further up the hill out to the horizon, the lights of apartment towers glimmer like fireplaces.
The view gives Winston comfort, as he shifts the weight of his lanky frame from foot to foot trying to keep warm. For him, the fogged apartment windows across the street are like movie screens. The world shown on these screens is more alive than his own. He is watching one apartment whose windows are dark. He takes a deep draw on his vape pen, inhaling menthol nicotine steam, his dark eyes and scruffy hair giving him the look of a smoldering scarecrow.