There was a fire in my apartment building last night, down the hall. At about 2 or 3 in the morning, I was awake, and I heard the fire alarm go off. Thinking it was probably a false alarm, I went out into the hall to double check - the hallway was filling with smoke.
I ran back into the apartment and woke up my roommate and her boyfriend, telling them we needed to get out of the building. Harley, Sarah's boyfriend and I ran down the hall to see if we could help as the building filled with smoke. Two kids with fire extinguishers ran up to us, and we grabbed them. My pin was stuck, but Harley and I braved our way into the fiery apartment to try and stop the fire. Since my extinguisher wouldn't work, I ran through the rest of the apartment, looking for pets, computers, phones, or anything really flammable. The smoke got too bad, and we had to run out.
We ran back inside to Sarah, grabbed our cat and our jackets and ran into the hall, which was now too smokey to see the walls in. Sarah screamed to "KEEP LOW!" while we hurried to the staircase. As they descended, I realized that there might be people awake or trapped upstairs, so I ran upstairs to the third floor. The smoke was too bad to see, and my lungs were beginning to burn. Sarah screamed for me, and I ran back down.
Outside, the firetrucks came to stop the blaze, which was in the first apartment on the second floor (my floor) facing the street. I grabbed our cat Momo from Sarah, and she and Harley helped carry the fire hose into the building with the firefighters. You could see the girl, Austin, whose room was up in flames, hysterical with her roommates. I tried to console her but was too panicked and terrified to do much, so I walked to a neighboring building with the rest of the neighbors while they put the fire out.
Within an hour, the fire was out, and we were allowed to come inside to grab our valuables before we were evacuated for the night. Those who had nowhere else to stay were boarded onto a bus that was parked in front of the building for the evening. Sarah's mum came and picked up Harley, Sarah and I, and we made it to Franklin around 5AM. I called out of work, and we went straight to sleep, smelling like smoke. This morning, my lungs are full of ash, and my nose was bleeding. I really tried to help, but it was too late.
The important thing is that no one was hurt and that stuff is replaceable. Austin had been using a blender and too many other electronics in her room, which started an electrical fire. In the past 3 years, my building has caught fire, flooded 2 or 3 times, been burglarized dozens of times, had parts of exposed sky in the top apartments, and horrible plumbing/electrical problems.
As we were driving to Franklin, so late at night, Momo curled up in a bag on next to me, The Doors were singing "Come on baby, light my fire," on the radio. We all laughed, and I had a silent heart attack for the 9th time that night.