I’ve always thought that policemen were here to serve and protect us, right? Wrong. It was 230am and Maia and I had just closed down the bar for the night. We began our walk home but only got to the first corner before a red car rolls slowly to a stop next to us. We turned to see two policemen in the car who want to talk to us. “What are you girls up to?” they questioned. We explained that we had just got off work and were walking back home, prompting them to ask where home was. They began talking quietly together, and just as we began to wonder if we were in some sort of trouble they looked at each other, back at us, back and each other, and finally looked at us and said, “Well, we’re on the lookout for someone, but you girls should be ok. There will be another police car on the corner a couple blocks down. Ask them if it is safe to proceed once you get there.” After bidding us goodnight they were on our way and we were left somewhat stunned on the side of the road.
So there we were, watching our knights in shining unmarked car drive off, left to fend for ourselves on our 15 minute walk home. Nevermind that walking through the dilapidated city central at 3am feels eerily postapocalyptic, there is now a madman on the lam. We tried to act fearless as we walked together (rather closely) down the road, but our jumps at the wind whistling through skeletons of buildings gave us away…paranoia crept in as our minds manifested footsteps in the rubble and danger loomed out of the shadows with each flutter of plastic.
It didn’t help that there was no cop car to be seen on the corner, so we had no idea whether or not it was “safe to proceed”. Were we being punk’d? Was this some joke for a couple of bored police officers who had nothing better to do than scare a couple of girls on their late night walk home? Our suspicions were quickly debunked however, for as we walked towards Latimer Square we saw 3 or 4 police cars drive past us; one of them even slowed down to take a good look at us before driving off.
By the time we reached Latimer Square we were well on edge. We decided that the best way to ward off any potential creepers in the shadows was so sing. Loudly. Hotel California rang from our lips with such ferocity even the hardest killer wouldn’t dare approach us. The theory behind our obnoxious singing was simple; if we sing loud, we will deter anyone from attacking us because not only are we drawing them to our attention, we are also drawing in the attention of everyone else (whether they want to or not). Therefore, we are not an easy target. Makes sense, right? (What were those cops thinking when they left us to our own devices?) Halfway through the park we had to pass under some rather sizeable trees (large enough, per say, for someone to hide in…) and Maia and I simultaneously looked up-creatures from a certain Grimm episode running through my mind while Maia couldn’t shake mental images from some clickety clack story that I have never heard but refused to let her tell me in the moment. After quickening our pace we made it out of the Square in no time.
Our first great idea to sing was trumped by a new (even better!) plan. Since we live near Manchester Street (where all the prostitutes hang out/work) we thought we would go on hooker patrol. If they weren’t on Manchester, that means the cops have told them to go home because there is someone out there and it is serious. Upon passing The Ferret’s house (also known as Simon), we noticed his light was on and decided to include him in our investigation of Manchester. We skipped across the road and knocked on the door. Unfortunately, it wasn’t until after we knocked that it occurred to us how odd this would seem through Simon’s eyes. He opened the door and we all stared at each other for a full 8 seconds of awkward silence before I meekly squeaked out, “Wanna go on hooker patrol with us?” Maia chimed in with details of the night and it all came flooding out in one quick breath. He stared quizzically at us before finally asking, “Want a beer?” We shouldnt have worried about any situation being awkward with Simon; this is the man who, upon being called and asked what color of hypothetical hat he would wear with his cape (blue or purple), he responded “purple” like it was an obvious answer to a normal question. He never even asked why we wanted to know. We ended up drinking beers with him for a couple of hours instead of going on hooker patrol. We may never know if they were out that night or not, but all’s well that ends well. We got home safe and sound, so I guess those cops were right after all…we were just fine.