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.
You don’t fucking know Los Angeles. If you thought you did, I’ll set you straight right now: Urth Caffe and and the stars carved into cement on Hollywood Boulevard are a red herring. The painted ladies on Melrose serve up a plastic distraction.
A lovely lie.
Of course, Keke knew that. She knew a lot of things — the way she stood there behind the microphone in the dusty haze on the stage behind the Green Door next to the In N’ Out, with that haunted gaze of hers — you know she’d been through hell and back.
The passport to her pain was encoded into her acoustic guitar strings, plucked with pretty precision. She was trying to warn us, but we just wanted to hear her sing her siren song for us.
We didn’t listen. Not really. Especially not when she told us she was being followed.
We didn’t listen. Then, they took her.
Somewhere by the Scorpion Bar and Midtown Wig, across from the Lowes where someone got stabbed last week by a garden hoe. The same Lowes that conveniently doesn’t have cell reception. The same Lowes that sits right next to a mesmerizing mess of a parking structure. The Lowes, that as we approach in the setting sun, the homeless man with the crooked finger camped outside of the Midtown Crossing points us in the opposite direction as he croaks out:
Go to a different Lowes.
But we’re not here to improve the homes we don’t have.
We’re here to get her back.
To find Keke, we have to go not where the avocado toast turns brown at the edges, but we must go where the manhole covers open secret passageways to sweaty raves, and holes in fences open up to nocturnal colonies.
We’re going to go to the heart of this city — the real city.
Are you in?
Eaten Alive by the Millennial Underground is a multimedia fiction series written daily by writer Amy Suto. 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.