Runaway High Tops


Peter Amato, Staff Writer

Clarice geared her skateboard to the right since a corner was coming up on the street. The dim flickering streetlights barely illuminated the neighborhood at night. The only car in the road was parked on the right side, up from where she was. She released the grip of her bag strap, picked up her skateboard, and tried to speed walk past the car. Suddenly, her oversized shoes tripped her, sending her toppling over onto the sidewalk. The parked car lit up like a flame. Her heart began pounding. What if this was a cop? She didn’t want her mom to find out about this. She picked herself up as the person pulled up and rolled down their window revealing a man with round glasses.

“You took quite a fall little miss,” the man said calmly. “You alright?”’

“I’m f-fine,” she stuttered.

He looked towards where she had come from. “Whatcha doin’ riding around in the dark anyways?”

She paused trying to find words. “Look, I don’t mean any trouble officer-”

“Officer?” the man cut her off. “Why, I’m only here to help.”

Clarice looked puzzled. “I’m sorry?”

“You’re trying to rid yourself of problems, right? That’s what my job is.”

She had no idea what this guy’s deal was.

The man could tell she didn’t understand and stumbled upon his own words. “Here, I can show you, do you have any possessions on you that you dislike?”

She waited, then glanced around looking for anything that fit what he was describing. “Oh, I absolutely hate these shoes my mom bought for me. They’re what made me trip.”

“If I may, could I use one for the example?” the man asked.

“Take em’ both for all I care.” she said confidently slipping off both sneakers.

“If you say so,” the man took the pair. “But now, before I act, I must tell you dealing with this problem is permanent. You really are fine with never seeing these again?”

“It’s not like they’ve done any good for me.” she snarked.

The man waved his hand in a circle motion, and the shoes began to fade into particles. Clarise backed up a bit. In an instance, they had completely disappeared. Both stood in silence.

“That was unbelievable, but… is that all?” she questioned.

“Well yes,” the man assured. “You wanted to get away from your problematic shoes, and now they’re gone. You must feel better now, don’t you?”

“I dunno,” she looks back down.” I thought I’d do better without em’, but my feet are just unprotected now. But… hey! I could always buy a new pair.”

“You only get one pair, kiddo. Do you really think you can ride that board all the way to a shop without blistering your soles? How much money ya’ even got?”

She glanced back at her bag. “20… 30 something bucks.”

“In todays economy, that wouldn’t even pay for a lace.” he remarked.

Clarice slumped her shoulders, looking disappointed and confused.

“Perhaps the positive things your shoes did for you outweigh the negatives,” the man said gazing at the horizon. “After all, you told me you were fine after you fell.”

She looked up at the man with a sudden grasp of the situation.

“Hope I was a help, lassie. It’s late, so I suggest getting to where your supposed to be.” the man grinned, adjusted his glasses, and rode off.

Clarice followed the car with her eyes, and as it got further away it almost looked like it disintegrated itself. She grabbed her skateboard and didn’t look out at the main road, but instead the corner she came from. There, waiting for her on the sidewalk, were her shoes.