Author’s Notes: Read Chapter 4 before continuing. Drug/Alcohol/Violence warning.

CHAPTER 5

The first day I was taken to my solitary cell, there was a package on my cot waiting for me.

It was a large unmarked rectangular box, and inside was a brand new guitar with a note that read:

You have plenty of time to practice now.

My first reaction was to smash the thing into pieces, but fortunately I let myself cool down, and that was how I spent my free time for the next two decades, quietly plucking at the strings of that guitar. I had been prepared to rot the rest of my life away in jail, but on a fateful Friday afternoon I received my first visitor. Even though I knew better, I wanted it to be Reina, and was of course more than a little disappointed when I was sat across a bare table from Mr. Miguel Morales, who had a new job offer for me. He refused to explain any details until I agreed, so despite my trepidation I accepted his aid in getting out of prison, and was released back into the general public in the spring of 1923.

I had no more identity of my own. I certainly couldn’t be Javier Hernandez anymore, I hadn’t lived as that person for too long. I had no way of knowing what had become of Reina, and it would be foolish to try to go back to Apan and find out. I had to assume that she had moved on, and was happier that way. Mr. Morales had been very vague about how he would contact me once I was on the outside, insisting that neither of us should stay in one place for long, and that I be on my guard at all times to not reveal who I had been.

I became a drifting musician, finding a shady place to sit for a few hours at a time and strumming the songs that I had been playing in my cell for years. WHenever people would congregate too regularly around me, I knew it was time to move on to another place, either another street or another town, and before long I was moving across the country at a steady pace. After some time passed, it became a comfortable routine, and I began to forget about my previous lives, my only purpose now to create music. I forgot, or rather, willfully ignored the prospect that lay ahead of me inevitably. I would be required to kill again. There were many times that I felt I was incapable of killing anymore, until the day I was given a slip of paper by a dirty street child. He dropped the paper at my feet and then ran off to rejoin his friends, leaving me with only an address and two words: “Alone. Midnight.”

 

Read Chapter 6