That day was the most terrifying of my life. It was the crack of dawn. I awoke in a wooded area of a park with nothing on me but khaki pants and a blue dress shirt. My glasses lay next to me, shattered and without a leg. The ground was damp with melting snow and all I could see in the distance were ducks and geese flying past the trees of this unknown park in this unknown city.
The mist filled the air of the vegetated area with an eerie density that wasn’t any more reassuring. I sat there for a few minutes, with an incredible headache, thinking where I could possibly be. More interestingly—who am I?
I finally mustered up enough strength to walk around to investigate my surroundings and I found a bicycle against a bench. The wheels were severely deflated, but I needed the transportation.
The entire time I was pedaling I thought to myself about the circumstances that might have lead to my abandonment. I was obviously out for some sort of business, because I was dressed for such a purpose, but how did I end up in the middle of this park with no wallet, no keys, and no means of communication?
I continued on and saw a green sign. As I approached it, I could see that it said ‘Dayton City Limit’. This didn’t help much. I didn’t know where Dayton was, what I was doing there or what my very own name was. I needed help, but given that I was left here in the middle of the city, something told me that trusting anyone was not a good idea.
I finally found a nice-looking little diner with a few cars parked in front and I decided to walk in. I needed to try to contact someone—but whom?
“Excuse me. Could I use your phone?” I asked with slight hesitation.
“Sure, hun,” replied the hostess as she brought the cordless phone to me.
“Thank you. Um… what is the phone number for the police?”
The woman now looked at me as though I was from out of this world. “Well, 911, of course,” she said in a patronizing manner.
As I dialed the number and waited for it to ring once or twice, I looked up at the TV and saw on the news the report of a young man whose body had been found in a park outside of Dayton. I immediately dropped the phone as I felt an electrifying shiver run through my body as if a cold wind had just blown.
As I turned back to the TV, I heard the reporter say: “The cause of death is yet to be announced, but local police currently have the case under investigation and will be disclosing details when they are made available.”
As the reporter closed her sentence, a picture of the young man ran across the screen along with his name. In an instant, I felt an excruciating pain in my chest. Naturally, I held my hand over my chest with my right hand, only to bring it up to my face again. As I looked up astonished at the sight of blood on my right hand, everyone in the diner had turned their attention to me with apparent fright.
I now knew who I was and all that had happened to me, but now I was lost and none of that meant anything.