The day was perfect. The sun shined, the birds sang, and the autumn wind caressed everyone so gently it could be mistaken for a mother’s touch. This all went unnoticed by her as she walked down the streets trying to maneuver in place she’d never set foot on or seen before. She could walk most of the streets blind and still find her way back to campus.
She could navigate like a local. This small fact bothered her to no end because she had never read a map of the city, set food on it before she had arrived and had only seen pictures of local landmarks. Everything was almost as familiar as things in Sunnydale, a town much smaller than the bustling St. Louis.
Yet, things still didn’t match up. Buildings that she thought should be occupied were dead zones. She expected to see lights, sounds, people. She had found abandoned lots, empty streets, and drug dealers. The things that had made Sunnydale so much more alive, the things she didn’t think about during the day, were missing from here that she expected.
Small things, important things weren’t there.
One day she had gone walking and hadn’t stopped until she saw the worn down building in her sights. In front it held a fleet of once proud police cars that now sat, rusting and used, waiting for the next in coming call in the lazy neighborhood. She had watched for several minutes, expecting it to change before she went to expect it.
The seventh time she had walked around the precinct, so much smaller and dinger than she expected, a local officer demanded what she wanted. She had looked at his tired face, dirty uniform, and couldn’t explain why she was there.
“Nothing, I thought this was another precinct.” She began and ended lying. “I had a friend who said they worked there. I must have gotten the numbers wrong.” She said while trying to desperately figure out why she had come here. Anita had left without a glance back.
Walking down an alley, Anita met a dead end. Old soiled bricks glanced back at her lazily as if demanding she dare question their existence. Anita turned back and left. Anita knew it should have been open and on the other side should have been a store, maybe not yet there but a store needed to be there.
It was around that time she decided to set up an appointment with the counselor and wished she had brought Sigmund along with her.