I was raised in Southern Arizona but as a young teen I ran away from home and found my way even deeper south, toward Mexico. Young and with no money I found myself living on the streets and prostituting my body for food. Eventually I started using any drug available, my favorite being heroine. For a few years I had gotten used to the lifestyle and even made a few friends.
One of my friends, Alejandro, was probably the only person I had met while on the streets who wouldn’t take advantage of me. He seemed like he was raised in one of those God fearing families. His morals, though limited, were there between hits of whatever drugs we got our hands on that day. We soon became best friends.
When the two of us ran out of money for food and drugs we liked to spend our time under the shelter of the church at a little mission out in the desert. On summer nights instead of going inside we sat against the wall and watched the orange sunset fall behind the mountains. It was one of those evenings that we met the Man Dressed in Black.
He approached us quietly and actually had startled me a bit we he turned around the corner of the mission wall. As he reached us I noticed how strangely the man walked. It was quite a limp but it was a normal walk either, to this day I couldn’t explain it except that maybe he wasn’t quite human…
Anyway, I had donned him the name “Man Dressed in Black” because of his clothing. Despite the walk, the man looked like a rich man. His jet black hair was slick back nicely. He wore a dark black suit and tie. His eyes that looked Alejandro and me over were even black. Black as is it gets on a moonless night.
As soon as he reached us a chill went down my spine. I knew this man was up to no good and when I looked at Alejandro I could tell he did too. In fact, Alejandro had a look of fear on his face. I was confused. The Man Dressed in Black wasn’t that scary.
“You’re hungry,” the man said before even saying any sort of greeting. In his hands was money which he handed to me.
Quickly I reached for it and stuffed the bills into my pockets. Alejandro, though, didn’t reach for anything. He kept his eyes on the man’s legs. “Don’t take anything,” Alejandro whispered to me in a warning tone. I ignored him and continued to grab money even though I could feel a strange chill going down my spine once again.
“Don’t take his money!” Alejandro said once again but louder. I turned to him angry that he was embarrassing such a generous man. “Shut up!” I told him and when I turned back to the man, he was gone.
I got up to see where he had gone but when I looked around the wall there was nothing except strange, inhuman, footprints in the dirt and that was when I could feel true fear creep over me. “Didn’t you see his feet?” Alejandro asked me as we left the mission. “Of course you didn’t. You were too busy looking at his hands, what he had for you in his hands. You didn’t even try to look at his feet. That man was the Devil!”
I didn’t answer him, still shaken up from my experience with the Man Dressed in Black. I just stood there looking at the man’s footprints. And sure enough, they looked like something that had a chicken foot and a hoof had been there.