Mike Hancock climbed the sagging stairs to a third-floor door that let out to an asphalt roof. He felt light rain as crossed the roof to another door; opened it and entered a one-room apartment. They call it an “efficiency,” he thought. My place. Out of that damn looney bin again. I wonder what this roof will be like as winter gets worse. What a hole. An apartment with its only door on the roof.
“Meds,” he said to himself. “Where the hell did I put them. I feel like throwing up.” He ran water from the stained kitchen sink into a paper cup and took a drink.
“There they are.”
Hancock picked up a vial from a folding table with a torn top, dropped a tablet into his palm, placed it into his mouth, and drank again. He sighed and sat down on a wooden chair.
“Rumble rumble, I’m going to tumble,” he started to chant in monotone. “I can’t grumble about the state I’m in. Clinic’s no picnic, I’m an impatient outpatient, sentient being whose been shoved into ...”
He stopped. “What is this. Limbo? Purgatory? Whose madness put all this together?”
Rain, rain. He stepped back onto the roof, looked over the edge into a small wood-fenced yard below, mostly dirt and weeds. Through the closed window of the next house, very close, he watched a seated heavy man in an undershirt and shorts and a slimmer woman in a slip. She moved around a kitchen. On the second floor. Below.I could jump, he thought, head first. Break my neck. Then it would be over. What would they do with my body? He knew he was visible as twilight darkened the neighborhood, lights turned on inside the scattered houses on small lots. The man in the undershirt stood up, walked to the window and looked out, turned to the woman and pointed. He sees me, Hancock thought. She looked out as well in her slip, a can of beer in her hand, then turned away and disappeared from view. The man sat back down in the chair and appeared to speak to someone Hancock couldn’t see.
My aim is more than 40,000 words - more elaborate depictions of characters, more complex plot)