El Cero

short stories

Street Theatre

It had been a while. But you’re waiting for the metro when you here: duh, duh duh, duh duh duh duh, duh duh…

“What’s that? Is that gunfire?”

If it wasn’t for the reaction of the other people I wouldn’t have noticed it.

People are leaning over the barriers watching the street, but there’s nothing to see. You drop one level in the station, more people watching, but only cars in the street. You exit the station and there’s a policeman on the pavement with his pistol out.

Your eyes focus on the pistol. He’s ready to use it. Black and heavy, but worn on the edges.

He doesn’t know what to do. He runs up the street then back again, up the street then back again. Pedestrians are running around, people look scared. You look up the street, there’s nothing to see.

More policemen, more pistols. A man is saying: “over there, over there.” Everybody’s moving to the next corner. The policemen are running. You move, you look. Masked men with rifles block the street, police wagons and yellow tape.

You look along the alley, only policemen, you look along the pavement, only police, you look up the opposite pavement: three bodies, bloodied bodies slouched in the street. Maybe there are more, but you can’t see.

Three dead people, three corpses. An officer on his mountain bike says, “nothing to see”, “move on please, move on”. People look tense, scared, excited, concerned.

Plain clothed officers with machine guns running along the street. “Who are these men?” you ask. They could be sicarios, and those guns are so powerful.

More police, more police, more guns, more guns. A gun ready to use could go anywhere, you’re powerless in front of a gun ready to use.

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