Sunday, July 31, 2011

Writing Life: Stories on the Fly - The Only Way Out

Total Writing Time: 15 Minutes; Total Editing Time: 8 minutes, 30 seconds

Scenario: A woman. Locked in a room. With a deadline.

The clock was ticking. She looked up at the window. Sheet metal had been welded over it. She checked her watch again. She knew it was two minutes fast. Yes, two minutes might be enough, she thought. Above her head near the top of the window, was a bomb. Just a handmade bomb but she could see there was enough explosives to destroy half the building, and certainly this entire room.

She was alone in a room about 500 square feet. The walls were painted black, featureless. The floor was made up of white shiny tiles. There were pools of bright lights concentrated in the center of the room, leaving the outer edges dark. There was only one window and one door. The door had bars of steel welded over the front of it on the other side. She knew this because there was a small screen hanging down from the ceiling in front of her showing the door and hallway outside. It was a little like one of those DVD screens that drop down inside a fancy, tricked out mini-van. No one was in the hallway. She had nothing but her clothes and her watch. She pounded the sheet metal over the window with her fist, testing it. There was no way to break through it.

After looking around the room, she walked around the outer edges quickly testing the walls for any weaknesses. She finished in the middle of the room and stared up at the DVD screen. It was attached to the ceiling but there seemed to be a seam in the ceiling. She jumped lightly, hitting the bottom of the DVD screen. There was the tiniest amount of give. She smiled.

She backed up and then ran towards the DVD screen and leaped up towards it. She grabbed the screen and held on, swinging her legs. The screen held and then her forward momentum pulled the screen's based too far and the screen ripped from the ceiling leaving a gaping hole that looked like it would just large enough for her to crawl through. She landed on her hip with a thud, pulling the screen and its cords with her. She checked her watch. There was only three minutes to go. She grabbed the cords and climbed up through the hole as quickly as she could. She was breathing hard but paid no attention. There was a long corridor of vents ahead of her. She had no idea if she was going to get far enough away in time but she had to try. She began crawling away from the room, barely able to get up on her knees. She went in the direction of the north side of the building near the river and kept going. She knew if she didn't reach the other end of the building, she would probably be killed in the blast or at least seriously injured.

She stayed focused. Kept moving, she thought. It was the only thing she could do. She could see the other end of the building in front of her. Just a little bit longer, she thought.

The building exploded.

1 comment:

Daphne said...

Wow that was actually riveting . . . nice job MT! Can't wait to read more :)