TradeJacob started coughing before he even lit his cigarette, leaning heavily on the rusted railing of the stoop to his apartment building. The mariachi music blaring from a third floor window muted his rasping coughs. A string of curses ran through his mind as he heaved in lungfuls of the foul Bronx air. Just a walk, someplace quiet to sketch, was that so much to ask? But what did he expect? Lately, it seemed the whole world was against him.Trade1 year ago in Short Stories More Like This
But the episode passed like they always did, and Jacob took one of the three rationed cigarettes from his wallet and flicked his fifty-four cent lighter at its end. Money was tight, forcing him to censor his expensive habit. He wondered fleetingly if a spark would set the exhaust in the alley on fire and consume him. He wondered if he really cared.
The nicotine gradually did its work, and the warm summer air enticed him to persevere with his original intention. He scuffled slowly down the disheveled road, dodging old newspapers and husks of Chinese foo