The Curse of the Up-Town C-Train
by Michael Spitzkoff
The light was shinning inside an office on the fifty-first floor of the Grey Stone building late one night. Christian Maloney, an attractive young executive for Schwartz and Co. was burning the midnight oil. The cleaning crew began to track through the fifty-first floor. Albert, the crew supervisor saw an emanation coming from the office four doors down from the elevator, as he walked over. "Working late tonight Ms. Maloney?" Albert said standing at the doors entrance.
"Yes Albert...I have some last minute things have to do here. Deadlines, you know. I'll be done here in a couple." Christian said twirling her hair back, charming as usual even at the wee hours of the night.
"Yes Ma'am," Albert said and does an about face.
Christian finished her work and began to take the elevator down to ground level. She glances at her watch. "Oh shit!" she said out loud.
The elevator door opened up and Christian ran out into the main lobby. She trots to the exit past the guard desk.
"Everything alright, Ms. Maloney?" Harry, the guard asked as she ran by towards the door.
"I'm going to miss my train!"
"Do want me to get someone to escort you to the subway?" Harry asked.
"No time Harry. Have a good night!" Christian shouted as she pushed the revolving door to the outside.
"Goodnight!" Harry said.
Christian ran a block down the partially lit street and entered a subway stairway at the downtown district of New York, the city that never sleeps. The doors closed to the “B” train heading uptown which began to pull away before Christian could get on leaving her behind on the empty platform.
"Shit!" Christian said out of breath. The midnight hour had approached and an empty subway platform was the last place a person wanted to be. Worried for her safety, Christian became anxious waiting for the next train. Her cell-phone, had no service. A vagrant man appeared out of nowhere and strolled by Christian mumbling nonsense.
"A train will be coming by shortly," the vagrant said under his breath.
Christian kept her eyes glued on this man as he continued to walk to the other end of the platform immersing into the darkness.
Minutes later a train came roaring up to the platform. Christian reluctantly entered the train thinking how odd it was that another train had arrived so soon. The subway car was completely empty as she sat down. The doors closed and as the train took off the lights abruptly go out;several seconds later they came back on. Sitting next to Christian was an old lady wearing a tattered black dress. Christian flinched; surprised to see this old lady had appeared out of nowhere. The old lady turned her head and smiled at Christian. “You don’t belong here, do you darling?” the lady asked Christian.
“Excuse me? Christian asked the lady confused. The car went dark again.
When the lights come back on, there was a couple having sex on the seat across from Christian. The women in the throes of passion turned her head and look straight at Christian. Initially the women grinned at Christian proceeded by an ominous expression written on her face. The lights go out and come back on. A young man with a leather coat had appeared, approaches the couple still engaging in sex, and pulled out a gun pointing it at them.
“Give me your money,” the mugger shouted at the couple. The mugger impatiently demanded “Come on, all of it…Now!” With the girl still on top of him, the man slowly pulled out his wallet. The mugger became antsy and started to shoot his gun hitting the couple; blood squirted all over the place.
The room goes dark followed by a loud horn sound and a jolted shutter by the train. The lights came back on. The car was empty with just the old lady sitting next to Christian. “What’s the matter dear?” the old lady asked. Christian, rattled, couldn’t even utter a word.
A man wearing a cluttered suit came walking through the side door on the end of the car. Staggering down the isle the man appeared to be either sick or drunk. The man collapsed right in front where Christian was sitting. Flat on his belly he slowly turned his body around facing Christian. His eyes were blood shot and his skin was jaundice. He held out his arm as if he were reaching for her and vomited all over the floor.
“Please help me?” the man asked Christian sounding as if he were in pain. A stream of vomit dripping out of the side of his mouth. The lights immediately go out.
When the lights came back on a different couple appeared, in the mists a verbal argument at the end of the car. “How can you do that to me!” the woman yelled at the man. The man grabbed hold of the woman as she tried to get away and slapped her across her face. She fell to the ground.
The lights go out and come back on. The couple was gone. Four young thugs appear: two on one side and two on the other side of the car wearing retro clothing.
“You on our turf, motherfucker,” one of the thugs said to the other pulling out a knife.
"This ain’t your turf cool breeze,” replied the rival. The thugs attack each other with knives. The lights go out and come back on. The thugs disappear.
Two men holding a third walk through the door. The men sharply dressed like mobsters. They sat down across from where Christian was sitting.
“It’s going to be alright, Frankie,” the wise guy whispered to the man in the middle. Christian noticed the man in the middle had a blood soaked side.
The old lady leaned over to Christian. “I think you should get off this train at the next stop, honey,” she brusquely said to Christian.
The lights went off and stayed off. Distorted faces of death submerge out of the darkness. The car became tremendously noisy with sounds of people yelling and screaming in agony. Christian paralyzed with terror looked over at the old lady's now smiling pale, rotted face.
“Get off our train!” a random voice with a distorted tone roared! The train stopped and the doors opened. Christian dashed off the train running as fast as she could, screaming in fear through the subway platform. She ran around a corner bumping in to a maintenance worker almost knocking him over.
“What the hell are you doing down here?” the maintenance worker asked Christian.
“I...I, got on the “B”train to go home,” Christian said trying to catch her breath.
“Lady... this place hasn’t been in use for years. A train hasn’t come through here since... the C-Train derailed over Thirty years ago.”