Empty buildings loomed over me, engulfing me in dark shadows. Wind whistled through the empty streets, carrying dust and dirt with it. I blinked as it whipped around me, trying to stop the grit making me cry. I walked into the old saloon bar. Empty. Nothing but a couple of half empty whiskey bottles and broken glasses. I crunched my way over to the bar, not caring to watch my step. I liked hearing the glass break under my feet. I lifted the hatch on the old bar and the hinge crumbled away to nothing, leaving me holding the old plank of wood. I set it down next to one of the abandoned whiskey bottles, pausing to take a swig. It burned as it went down, but tasted good. The dust had built up over the years, there was a circle on the bar from where I had taken the bottle and my fingers were leaving dust trails in whatever they touched. I walked out of the bar, back across the crunching floor back out to the street. The saloon doors creaked threatingly at me as I passed through a second time. Across the street opposite me was a building open to the elements, the walls blown off on two sides, presumably by cowboy’s decades ago. The tall letters that were left attached to the front, somewhat precariously read ‘Bank’. Seeing as how it was missing half the walls I opted to leave that alone, I didn’t think I would find much in a building plundered already.
The wooden sidewalk was broken and ignored, holes never fixed and covered in sand. I could make out some footprints, faint, and not mine. I looked around, but there was no sign of anyone else. It’s a good place for me to start. I shivered. This place didn’t feel right, but I couldn’t leave yet. I had to finish looking around.
I followed the broken sidewalk around the corner and came to what had been the old town square. Some well-battered gallows came into view, a corpse of a criminal hung in shame, bones littering the ground beneath him. Turning to leave I noticed another small building, I stepped inside. The old jail cells were littered with skeletons, bits of moth eaten cloth draped over the bones, dust and sand covering the floor. I took a breath, and walked away. I had seen enough. Back past the gallows, back down the sidewalk, past the blown out bank and the saloon, I left the ghost town behind me. I would have to come back; I hadn’t connected to anything. But for now, I got in my car and drove away without looking back. Still feeling the prickling on the back of my neck. There was no doubt, this was going to be a hard case.