Crazy Heights

By Michele Graham

A/N: Just the first part. It will get scarier later on. There's a twist coming.

Crazy Heights. That's what they call us. Who are they? The cops, Fire Department. Just about everyone who comes into contact with us. But not everyone who lives at the Heights is a complete psycho. There are a few sane. Okay, by a "few" I mean me.. Sometimes it can get a little bit crazy. Hehe, pun intended.

Actually, our real name is Grover Drive. However, when you live in an apartment building famous for its nutjobs, you'll earn a name. Whether you want one or not. The reason why we are called Crazy Heights is because at least once a night, there is a problem with one of the residents. Fires, rantings, fights. It's not that hard to know what's going on in our building because the walls are paper thin.

Me? No, I'm not crazy. At least, I don't think I am. It depends on what you consider crazy. I'm sure that the transvestite that howls at the moon every night would consider himself sane. It's sort of scary to be a girl living in these conditions, especially when I'm barely twenty. The reason why I don't believe that I'm a total nut is because almost every time the Police come over, they ask for me. Now, I know that sounds like I am the favorite at Crazy Heights. But that's because I am.

You see, I moved here when I graduated high school. I didn't know that the apartment I was planning on moving in for college was Subsidized Housing. I vaguely remember my application asking me if I had any kind of "disorder." I thought dyslexia was considered one, so I answered yes. Big mistake. When I was finally smart enough to realize just exactly what I got myself into, it was too late.

Yes, yes. I know what you are thinking. How could I be that stupid? You see, I was desperate. I hardly had any money. And I needed a place to stay. After my parents passed away, I didn't have any other relatives, so I moved into the first place that would except me. Sometimes I'm sad that this place sucks so bad. But it does.

So, what else wrong with this place? I'll tell you. First off, the walls are paper thin. You can hear just about anything that goes on four doors down. The janitor hates me (probably because he hates his job). And my two next door neighbors are the sheer center of nuttiness. Benny, for example, talks to himself in different voices every chance he gets. I fist thought he had a roommate when I moved in. Nope. Just him and his "friends."

Then there's the woman who lives above me. She would seems like one of the very few who are actually normal. However, she listens to those crazy gospel channels. You know what I'm talking about? The ones with those Tammy Faye Baker lookalikes. All I can hear from three to five a.m. in the morning is Pastor Learagen chanting: "Oh! Repent! Repent! Praise the Lord! Remission of sins!" It's terrible. Sometimes, I cry myself to sleep, if I can sleep.

But that's just how it is here. It can be rather scary at times. Just the other night, I almost got the crap beaten out of me. I had just gotten home from work when I noticed the cops, yet again, were outside of the building, as was the Fire Department. I walked briskly to the front door when Officer Bushmond stopped me.

"Hi Grace." He said and flashed me a weary smile.

"I Officer." I replied. "What happened here tonight?" I looked around and observed each of the Firemen going about their business.

"We had a bit of an accident."

"What kind of an accident?"

"You know Bob Wilson?" I did. He was a widower who, from what I heard, was once quite normal. It wasn't until he lost his wife to cancer that he went off the deep end. . . And never came back.

"What about him? What has he done?"

"Well, he started a fire in the stairwell." At that I felt a burst of laughter escape my lips.

"Are you serious!?" He nodded and smiled. "Why?" Bushmond shrugged.

"He said he just wanted a little barbeque."

Still laughing, I bid him goodbye and rushed into my apartment building. The smell of burnt plaster greeted my as I slid through the front door. I had found Mr. Wilson's little act funny, but now that I was in the building, a cold shivered trickled down my spine. People really could've gotten hurt from that fire. Really hurt.

I entered my apartment and loosened my hair. I was going to take a long, hot bath, watch a little television, and try to sleep. However, I only got about twelve feet into my room when I heard someone practically banging my door down.

"Grace!" I head a women shriek. "I know you're in there! I saw you talkin' to that cop outside! Come on out, you little shit!"

I stooped down and gazed through my peephole. It was Betsy Jackson. A punk of a woman who lived down the hall. I think she used to be one of the Hell's Angles from the way she dressed. She was extremely getting worked up from behind the door, so I took the bull by the horns and did nothing. I know it sounds cruel, but I really didn't want to talk to her, or anyone else for that matter.

My body shaking with repressed laughter, I continued to stare at her through my door. After a few seconds of her ranting, she stopped, looked squar at my door, and flipped me the bird through the peephole. At that moment, I swung the door back.

"May I help you?" my voice was filled with sickening sweetness. Betsy's stout form hobbled up to me.

"I'm tired of you playing your stereo too loud!" I didn't understand what the hell she was talking about. "Every night! It's all I hear. You and your stupid country music. Those whiny, sappy loves songs! If I ever hear another word I'll-

I straightened myself and stepped closer so I could gather what she was saying. She, however, took this as a completely different sign.

"Oh, you want to fight? All right come on out! I'll kick your ass!"

"I'd love to try and see you kick that high." That was only supposed to be said in my mind, but it came bursting out my lips anyway. Her beady eyes grew wide with shock. I stepped out in the hall way so I could have plenty of witnesses. Even though she was short, she was still buff and could probably kick. . . my ass..

"Okay! C'mon!" she shouted in my face. "This'll teach you not to play your stupid music too loud!" A few people were beginning to poke their head out from their apartments.

I smiled at them as if you say every things fine. Finally, I stared down at Betsy.

"I don't own a stereo." I interrupted through her screaming. She stared at me confused (a look I was used to seeing), blinked, and stepped closer.

"You don't?" I shook my head.

"I don't have enough money to own one." Her whole countenance seemed to shrink back.

"Oh, well, don't let it happen again."

"I promise I will never let it happen again." I wasn't quiet sure what I was promising, but I didn't have my eyes clawed out. That's always a plus.

And with that, after shooting me a deadly stare, spun on her heel and left. Closing my door softly, I turned back around and faced my empty apartment. I could hear "The Lord will rise again" humming softly above me. I rolled my eyes and headed for my bedroom.

Crazy old hag. She seriously wanted to kill me. I could see it in her cold, black eyes. I sat down and stared at my bedroom wall for a few seconds. Hopefully I could get out of here in a year or two. Perhaps I could own one of those small upper crest apartments if I really saved my money.

Yeah right.

Perhaps I'll save my money to buy a stereo, and blast it.

Hey, just another day and Crazy Heights.