I knocked on her backstage door and waited. There was a faded golden star on it, with her name written underneath. I felt strangely numb. Repulse and anticipation canceling each other, perhaps. After a few seconds, she asked who was it. I didn’t know how to answer. If I was honest, she might not open the door. Then again, she might be curious about what had happened to me since we had broken up.
“It’s me, Jimmy,” I answered.
There was a long silence. Then footsteps, then the door opened. We stood face to face.
“What do you want here?” she asked coldly.
“I’m investigating a murder,” I answered, which was partly true. She didn’t need to know I wanted to talk to her again.
“A Zombietown murder? Being investigated? That is something!” she smirked, sarcasm oozing from her voice. She turned her back to me and walked to her dresser, leaving the door opened. I took that to be as welcoming an invitation as I was gonna get and so stepped into the room, closing the door.
She sat down in front of the vanity mirror and started slowly brushing her lovely red hair. That awakened memories I thought long dead and buried. No words were coming out of her mouth, so I opened mine.
“Her name was Medea Boid. She was a reporter for the Dusk Diary. A zombie killed her earlier tonight. The thing is, she had connections with the Gorgon family and now they’re pressuring us to find out what happened. Did you see her tonight?”
“You should ask Samedi about it,” she said, still brushing her hair.
“I already did,” I said.
“Then you have all the answers you need.”
“Not really. He blew me off with that small talk of his and…”
“Look, you thing you can just waltz in here after fifteen years and pretend nothing happened?!!” she snapped suddenly, rising and turning to face me. She had a half-angry, half-hurt look in her face. I was caught somewhat off-guard, but I recovered quickly.
“As I recall, you refused to come with me when I asked you,” I shot back at her.
“Leave Zombietown when people here needed all the help they could get?” she asked me, an incredulous look on her face. The same look she had fifteen years ago.
“Help people? Come on, this place was a cesspool. They deserved everything they got.”
“How can you say that? Romero was trying to change things,” she said. She believed it, I could tell.
“Oh please! Romero was a puppet. Samedi pulled all his strings. And what did they accomplish? More misery and pain. All those people died a second time for nothing!” I said with such intensity that I surprised myself. I was aware of all the resentment I carried. What I didn’t know was that it had festered all those years, growing into a dark disturbing thing. I felt relieved to finally let it out, to finally be able to express it to someone who would understand the full weight of it.