Before you embark into the depths of darkness where avocado toast goes to rot, you’re required to put on the MILLENNIAL UNDERGROUND SPOTIFY PLAYLIST.
Start the playlist at “TIME” for this chapter. Do not put on shuffle unless you want to ruin a perfectly timed playlist!!!
In the the haze of the dreamy, plant-lined millennial museum pop-up maze, Trigger and I dodged the men who were after us in the artificial light of the artificial life exhibit.
There was one neon sign that saved us, though:
It was hidden amongst the neon, so much so that the untrained eye could miss it.
That wasn’t mine. I pulled Trigger toward the hidden door, and we stumbled out into the LA night.
The streets were slicked with a light rain that had begun to fall, and we looked around frantically.
“We should call an uber — ” Trigger said.
I shook my head, in panic mode. “No, let’s catch a bus — ”
We heard a CLANG of another door and a yelling of the men who were after us, far away. It would be moments until they found us. Moments until we were swallowed up by Trigger’s debts and those who were sworn to bring him to the kind of “justice” that happens in the courtrooms of alleyways and warehouses.
We were prepared to fight for our lives with what little real skills we had. Nowhere in our liberal arts degrees had we learned krav magaw, and Trigger’s beat poetry was useless here. You can’t speak truth to power when your teeth have been knocked in.
That’s when I heard it.
The pounding of a bass.
The sizzling beat of a remix.
The siren song of…
…a DJ’s sound system.
Sure enough, there he was, Beats headphones unnecessarily around his neck as he screeched over to the side of the road, pushing open the passenger side door.
We sprinted over to his tricked-out used Escalade with its souped-up speakers, jumping inside just as —
BANG. BANG. BANG.
Gunshots rang out as we slid into the rainy night.
“You abandoned Dance Yourself Clean?”
“Those hipsters will dance to anything,” he said. “Besides, I heard through the disk jockey Slack channels shit was going down and the nightclub overlords are after you guys.”
I sighed. Somehow, Jedi had a knack for simultaneously making a really cool entrance followed by saying something like “disk jockey” or “nightclub overlords.” Also, I was perplexed that Los Angeles DJs shared a slack channel —
“To share remixes. That’s what the slack is for,” Jedi clarified, seeing the questions written on my face.
“Out of all the things you just said, that’s the thing you wanted to clarify for me?” I said, teasing him just slightly. He shrugged.
“Where are we going?” Trigger said. “They’re going to find us if we go back to The Satellite or any of our apartments.”
“To regroup at the only safe place in town.”
“Where’s that?” I asked, skeptically.
“The hallowed halls of Amoeba Records,” he said. “A few friends are waiting.”
I didn’t ask. I didn’t want to know yet. I shivered in the cold of the 60-degree rainy night, and Jedi saw. At the next stoplight, he shrugged off his sweater. Before I could protest, he threw it at me.
“Buckle up Misty, Saturday night traffic makes for a helluva long ride.”
It wasn’t that long, but I just smiled, putting on the sweater. Smelling his annoying — but familiar — cologne.
In the back of the car, I caught Trigger on the rearview mirror rolling his eyes. I didn’t care.
A remix of Sam Sparro’s Black & Gold came on over the speakers, and I turned it up. Surrendering to the sounds, for just a few minutes.
Eaten Alive by the Millennial Underground is a multimedia fiction series written daily by writer Amy Suto for National Novel Writing Month. Check out the rest of her blog here for more about her nocturnal excursions and writerly pursuits. Read the full Millennial Underground series as it’s coming out in the month of November at: AmySuto.com/underground, and be sure to subscribe via email so you don’t get #cancelled.