This short story is inspired by a day I walked from the movie theatre to the car at midnight and had that feeling on the back of my neck. I was across that parking lot and in the car faster than I thought possible, and while I was mildly embarrassed by the guy in the parking lot being close enough to hear the door locks, there was a part of my brain thinking something like the below would occur. It didn’t, but a writer’s imagination is not always a good thing…
He oozed out of the darkness, like he was made of the same oil that sat thick in his hair. I started walking faster before I registered that I had seen him. It was like something old, and primitive in my brain was screaming predator, and I fought the keys from my jacket pocket, slipping them between my fingers for a weapon if it came to that. I prayed that I wouldn’t slip on the snow covered ice in my mad dash, once I was down all bets would be off.
I didn’t dare unlock the car until I was almost on top of it, in case he leapt ahead and managed to get inside. I pressed it once to make sure only my door opened, and threw myself into the car, desperately clicking the lock closed behind me.
I heaved a sigh of relief, only to have it cut short as a loud rap sounded on the window. “Open the door!” It was the man, screaming at mer, pounding the window with one hand while the other tried at the latch. I considered setting off the alarm, but he and I were the only ones around, and there was a risk of unlocking the door. I turned the car on and the pounding got louder, and I feared that the window would break.
I slipped it into gear, pressing the call button on the steering wheel with one hand, “Dial 9-1-1” I reversed slowly, blindly, unable to see anything through front and rear windows covered in a layer of snow. The phone connected.
“9-1-1 whats your emergency?” The operator asked, calmly.
“There, is a man, hes trying to get in my car, and I can’t see, and I couldn’t clear the windows and I think he’s going to get in.” I gasped, struggling to breath though my panic.
“Where are you?” The operator responded.
“Uh, the theater on 6th and crescent.” I wasn’t sure.
“Okay, are you moving?” The operator asked.
“Slowly. I can’t see out the the windows except the side” Which seemed even dumber as I said it out loud, what was I thinking.
“Okay, stop the car, and put it in park” The operator said calmly, and I did.
“Okay.” I said to fill the silence.
“Take the keys from the car, and slip them-” The operator started
“Between my fingers” I finished.
“Yes, usually driving away would be best, but if you can’t see I am afraid you are going to hurt yourself or others. A squad car will be there in 2 minutes, just hold on.” The operator relayed, and I panicked in response.
“Don’t go” I pleaded, feeling foolish for asking.
“I am not going anywhere. I am going to stay on with you, every step of the way, and when the police have finished arresting him, you are going to tell me, and then I will hang up, and not before then, okay.” The operator’s voice was soothing as ash spoke.
“Okay” I took a deep breath, feeling calmer already. The operator would be there until the police arrested him.
It felt like the car was pressing in on me, and I struggled to breath. I wanted nothing more than to open the windows and get a breath, but I knew what would, what could happen if I did. I started to cry, and that when I heard them.
They were faint at first, and I thought I was imagining it, that I wanted to hear them so badly I was making them up, but then the operator spoke up.
“Do you hear that, those sirens? The police are almost there, stay with me.”
I flinched as he banged harder and harder on her windows, and it cracked, and I knew I didn’t have long before he was through and in.
It didn’t matter though, because now the sirens were deafening, and then one loud bang later, and he was being pulled from the window and thrown to the ground. He hit the ground screaming, and I sat crying, jumping when the police man knocked on my door.
“Ma’am its the police” And looked up and it was. The man who had tried to attack me was being shoved in the back of the car. The operator came though.
“Unlock the door.” She asked, and I did. The police officer opened the door and I collapsed against him sobbing. I heard him talking, and then he reached past and ended my call. Paramedics showed up, and I was taken in, shock apparently, and as I sat in the ambulance wrapped in a blanket all I could think was that it could have been so much worse.