Cramped into the tiny space, Colette adjusted her aching knees, trying futilely to find a comfortable position. How long had she been in here? Time seemed to stretch out and away from her like ripples of heat rising off blacktop when viewed from a distance. She knew one thing though, if she didn’t get out of here and soon, she was going to lose it.
As if being imprisoned in this metal deathtrap wasn’t enough she was surrounded by thousands of people, going about their business of enjoying their freedom, completely ignorant to her plight. Colette had tried to call out to them, signal them somehow to solicit help but all her efforts were short-lived and complete failures. No one looked, no one saw. They just zoomed past, completely absorbed in whatever errand forced them on towards innumerable destinations. Colette tried to shut it all out, pretend that she was under the covers in her bed, safe and warm with cold feet being the worst of her troubles. She could almost feel the soft pile of her worn cotton sheets against her cheek before a back spasm catapulted her back to her desperate reality. At least she was able to maneuver her arm enough to rub the arch of her back and somewhat alleviate the pain- thank God for small miracles, and all that.
The metal box that was her prison was noticeably growing hotter with each passing minute- or hour; the two were interchangeable at this point. Having stripped down to just her cotton camisole, Colette leaned closer to the vent that allowed in a little air from the outside world. Swallowing the urge to spew at the stink of putrid air that greeted her nostrils, Colette steeled herself and after a few seconds was able to take in the cooler air, the smell of rot and wet city was almost pleasant now.
Suddenly, Colette was keenly aware that she was no longer alone. Had her captor returned? The thought sat on her brain like an olive skewered to the top of a muffuletta. If they had come back, would she be released or would her tortured be continued in some new unimaginable fashion? The possibilities instantly overloaded her already fatigued mind. A shadow by the door, the handle began to move… Colette could only wait.
“Hey honey, sorry that took so long. For some reason they didn’t have the order I phoned in, so I had to reorder everything, and of course there was a line…anyway, let’s get outta here so we can chow down on some barbeque, what do you say?” Colette’s mother smiled at her as she climbed into the driver’s seat after depositing their takeout in the backseat. After abandoning her in this Volvo-shaped tomb for at least 20 minutes, her mother’s ‘cheery’ demeanor paired with the drool-inducing smell of barbeque that now filled the car was obviously some kind of ploy to win the girl’s trust. Colette just shrugged- best to remain noncommittal in these delicate situations. No doubt her diabolical birth-giver intended to regain Colette’s trust only to dash it against the pavement later in another subversive fashion not slightly removed from outright torture. Cruel woman.
Driving out of the restaurant’s parking lot and into traffic, Colette’s mother whistled along to some vile tune being disgorged from the Volvo’s speakers allowing Colette time to reflect on what horrors might await her once they arrived home, green beans from the can? cleaning out Sniggles’ litter box? emptying the dishwasher?!? Colette shuddered at the possibilities.
The Not So Fantastic Reality:
The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:
ONE: A curse upon cars, the lot of them! After spending my entire evening inside one, trapped as it were- I can honestly say that if I were picked up in my sleep tonight and moved to a locale where there were no cars, or at least fewer of the dumb things I would hug my abductor and never leave such a wondrous place. Ok, I’m being a little dramatic, but after riding/driving around on Orlando streets during a four-hour thunderstorm, surrounded by the soft-headed sock-puppets that are Orlando drivers I was so wound up by the time I got home I felt like I had just endured some kind of trauma. While I wasn’t trapped and actually elected to ride along/drive tonight, being stuck in a car from 5pm to 9pm and only going approximately 10 miles in any direction took its toll. The story is how I imagine a very dramatic pre-teen cataloging her ‘imprisonment’ in such a situation as her mother runs some errands about town.
TWO: One of our stops was at 4Rivers Smokehouse in Winter Park, have to keep mama happy while she’s riding shotgun- a bottle of Cheerwine and some fried pickles are definitely one way to do that. Nom… nom… nom… nom….burp!
Love & Squirrels.