A crimson sun pierced a blood-red sky as the final gasp of daylight disappeared from the skyline of Callahan, South Carolina. Contrary to the rest of the state, Callahan lacked a soul. Industrial plants polluted the air, crime infested the streets, and the color palette was a mottled grey. Whereas the coastal city of Charleston bustled with culture and history, Callahan focused on business. The Silicon Valley of the South was the nickname that residents had ascribed due to the prevalence of tech industries and manufacturing companies which had set up shop. The Palmetto River divided the city into two and served as the source of much of the industry what with its direct path to the Atlantic Ocean. On the north side of the river lay much of the industry and commercial infrastructure; while more residential neighborhoods resided to the south.
But this commercially viable city was overcast with gloom. Every pedestrian walked with a hurried pace, eyes trained on the ground, afraid of catching another’s gaze. Grey faces disappeared in shadow and hushed voices whispered in the dark.
Suddenly a loud crack! broke the cycle. Immediately, a scream shrieked across the wind and every head whipped backwards towards an intersection. A young man, maybe 25, had fallen in a crumpled heap. His hair was a shock of ginger, almost as red as the blood pooling beneath his body. His chest had been filleted and various viscera and organs hung out of the cavity.
The elderly woman standing next to the corpse screamed again, oblivious to the spray of blood that had stained her skirt. She gazed up at an adjacent apartment building, where a window on the fifth floor was open.
“He just… jumped,” she stammered to the onlookers.
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