Stories

Fallen Wall – Katja Vido

The building looks like it once hosted a kindergarten class for the poor kids of East Berlin. Now, it’s a techno club. She follows the boys into a long, black hallway. Everything is dark except for the floors, which are pink linoleum with brown splotches, probably kept in their original form. The scattered posters on the wall say things like “Antifa Statt Deutschland” and “Queer Friendly Space.”
        The hallway stinks like shit. The smell of cocaine-induced diarrhea haunts the corridor. The sober or the sensitive nose can sniff it out, and it’s one of those scents that lingers. The boys insist on going into the main room, so she follows them. They enter a space that looks like the inside of a vagina. It’s magenta coloured, warm, and contracts with every beat of the hard, loud drum and bass that blares through the hidden speakers.
        The people dance in tight, wizard-like movements. They are all high on horse tranquilizer or ecstasy. They don’t look like ballerinas, they look like witches casting a spell. They are watching a DJ. He doesn’t look at them. He makes studied, careful movements on his computer.
        The club goers are packed like sardines in a can, except that they’re preserved by a sweaty lubricant, not oil. Looking down at her palm, she studies the small bag of what was given to her by a friend, a powdery cocktail of ecstasy cut with paint and meth. She looks around and puts some on a key. No one, except for her, notices, or rather, no one cares. Beads of sweat become absorbed by the pink linoleum floor. She wonders, briefly, whether the kids who went to school here are now parents who sip espressos and work on laptops, no longer oppressed by the wall.
        Two hairless men clad in synthetic leather swap saliva next to her, one of them is her friend. Her own blonde hair turns red from the lights. The pink room morphs into a gray cloud because the dry ice machine is on. They’re in a haze, now. The music transitions from trance to hard, fast, euro-trash beats. There’s a new DJ; the wizards dance differently.
        They only occasionally stop dancing to chew bubblegum, their jaws working efficiently in conjunction with the music. The dancers belong to the room. Their fluids line the walls, the walls which once contained posters of the German alphabet and East German propaganda. It’s theirs now.