❯ Living in Gotham – Introduction ( Chapter 1 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
“Living in Gotham”
By Sara McDowell
The way to survive in Gotham is to live in the light.
The trouble with that is, light seems to always be in short supply here. The trick is to find it right as you leave your step, grab it’s coat tails and hold on tight. Feel the exhilaration as it whips you around corners and through the streets. Keep riding the light till it finds you safely back to the beginning. Close your door behind you and exhale.
In my opinion there are only two places in this country worth living. One is shiny, bright Metropolis and the other shadowy, mysterious Gotham. Most of my family is from Metropolis. I grew up there. And for a long time it was enough for me. But somewhere along the way I got interested in psychology, particularly the abnormal kind. And let’s face it, Gotham is the forefront of human and often inhuman psychology. So when it came time for graduate school, Gotham University was the only place I wanted to study.
After I got accepted, I moved to my folk’s Victorian house. My family has owned the place forever. About every five years my dad threatens to sell, on account that Gotham’s a bleeding, crumbling city. Then my mother, who is from the bleeding, crumbling city, cries, sobs and begs not to sell. She remembers Gotham before the Wayne murders. My father eventually feels guilty for making her cry. He holds her and tells her that he remembers how much he likes the view from the parlor windows. She sniffles and smiles and then tells him how good he is to our family. It was no small victory for my mother when my father told us one night at dinner that it was thanks to her I would be the one enjoying the view from the parlor from now on.
Really, he is dead on about the view. The house is on Cherry Street, appropriately named after the fauna it’s lined with. Across the street is Low Park. It’s a small park about two blocks long, sprinkled with sweet little gardens, benches, and the occasional mulberry tree. At the end of the park lies the Gotham River. From its banks you can see across the water to the financial district, the university, and Wayne tower. And if you look up river you can see the rocky cliff that provides the foundation for Arkham Asylum.
Cherry Street and Low Park are one of the few places in the city that isn’t shadowed by high-rises, and deafened by traffic. Every morning I walk out the door onto my front step, breath in real air, and catch the light as it bounces off the river.