Chapter 20: Mill Avenue
Butler had found five bugs on his car. Instead of taking them out however he decided to take the Mercedes back to the rental shop and trade it in on something a little more his style. The large black Ford F-150 was roomy on the inside. Holly could easily lay back and relax in the air conditioned cabin, however although she was a little tired she knew that falling to sleep was not an option. According to the GPS device on Butler’s dash, Mill Ave. was about thirty minutes away in a city in Phoenix called Tempe. The original creators of Phoenix had attempted to create miniature cities inside of their city, which was why Phoenix is called the Phoenix Metropolitan Area. The idea was to create communities where people could live and go to work, all in the same part of town. The plan, needless to say, never took off, though the planners held their ground, freeways connecting these cities took forever to build as the state place so much red tape around the projects it was virtually impossible to move them forward. The Part of Tempe they were located in was called the “Lake District” this was due to the Tempe Town Lake which ran like a snake alone the Arizona desert. The lake had been manmade and solely for economic purposes. The idea was to make a metropolitan center of Phoenix along the lake very much like San Antonio and their San Antonio River Walk which attracted many tourists. Holly had known a few fairies that had been on the walk, they had described it a beautiful yet full of mudman tourists.
Holly looked outside. How could anyone live here? She wondered as the truck paste a small group of people waiting at a bus stop all of them fighting over who got the small rectangle of shade provided by a tree behind them. The climate was far too extreme to Holly’s taste. The people seemed distant, even secluded from the outside because of the heat; they were cooped up in their homes or offices all day unable to venture beyond the walls.
As they got closer and closer in town Holly noticed more and more trees, flowers, misters, shade and therefore people outside walking around. There was still hope for these people maybe; at least they wanted to be outside. Mill Ave, near the Arizona State University, was uncharacteristic to the rest of the building Holly had seen. The restaurants and shops were made of red brick giving it an almost European air. The trees were tall and assisted the tall buildings who cast a shadow over the almost vacant street. Holly checked the reading on her helmet, they were getting close. The idea that Artemis might be in an old flour mill was surprising to say the least. Holly imagined Artemis engulfed in a mountain of flour unable to break free. However the image took a devastating turn when he began to choke on them, what was she thinking?
Butler parked in one of the many parking spots near the Mill. Mill Ave. was named due to the location of the old flour mill. Since it had been shut down many years ago the University had made in a state landmark so no one had been inside or had seriously inspected it in a very long time. It was located at the south end of the strip in-between the bustling college town, and south mountain, which was simple a hill with a huge cement A painted gold on the side to represent ASU. Holly looked up at Butler. She had never seen him this distressed he had blue circles under his eyes, pale skin with red blotches, and a look that could strike fear into a water buffalo. His dark green eyes were fierce as he thought of the best way to barge into the old flour mill and confront whatever and whoever was inside.