Enjoy your retirement. Those were his thoughts driving to his new “number one rated” over 55 community. After twenty-eight years working in a big city he looked forward to a little peace and comfort.
Turning on the car radio he heard the announcer matter of fact deliver the “breaking news” (wasn’t everything nowadays breaking news?)…”a gunman opened fire on students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, killing 17 people and injuring 17 others.” Looking up he noticed the highway sign said “Welcome to Florida”.
This post is written forFriday Fictioneers. The challenge is to write a complete story with a beginning, middle and end in 100 words or less using the picture prompt below.
On that fateful morning of his thirtieth birthday, in a room bare of everything except their sleeping bags, he finally realized that they would be homeless. Their landlord had dumped everything on the street the night before. Even the child’s highchair they had bought for their expected child.
He had always though that the jobs they both had were recession proof. He had always dismissed his wife’s nagging to “save for a rainy day.”
Beside him his wife rubbed her bulging stomach. “Honey, it’s starting to rain,” she said in a sad voice that could not hide her fear.
The night deepened. They were closing in on him. He could hear the hounds wailing just beyond the trees in the distance. The cacophony of the tracking dogs and horses trampling through the woods was putting him into a sheer state of panic. He was unable to rest or stop. His terror was growing by the minute. Planning for his escape had consumed his thoughts the last five years of his imprisonment. His immediate mission was to vanish into the vast Hinderlands of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The short flight had been routine. The plane the cartel provided had the latest in technology on board. With the cargo he was transporting it was required. The money he was being paid for this one trip would last him a lifetime. He planned to disappear once he had parked his plane on the dock.
As he deftly put the floatplane down on the calm lake waters a chilling fear racked his body. The dock was deserted. His coconspirators were not there.
Behind him came a loud voice: “Captain, prepare to be boarded.”
Sorry my love but I be slightly delayed for our marriage ceremonies. Weather here is dreadful. Not sure when the next flight to Detroit is but you can bet I will be on it. Thanks again for allowing me some time to get myself together. I wasn’t really sure if I wanted to commit to a lifetime together.
Wait! They are announcing my flight. Wonderful news!
Heading toward the gate I hear my salvation. “Announcing the boarding of flight 656 non-stop to London will begin in five minutes.”
He knew the restaurant closed at midnight. It said so on the sign on the front door. He knew that for a fact because he had spent the last two nights across the street observing that even if there were no customers the place closed promptly at midnight.
Tonight would be a busy night. There should be plenty of cash on hand. He knew they did not have a safe because he used to work there. Once he entered the place he knew he would not have much time to accomplish his mission.
He waited until tonight because he knew Karl would be closing the place. Karl his previous manager. Karl who had fired him. Karl the prick. Karl needed to die. It was payback time. Karl would not make the next opening of the store. He hoped there would be no collateral damage.
Look out Karl he said to himself as he waited patiently in the parking lot as the sun went down. It would be worth the wait. Thoughts of how Karl would die drifted through his mind as he fell as he into a deep sleep.
It was a cold March day. Patches of snow still remained from the harsh winter. That was nothing new here in the desolate southwest desert. Living conditions were hostile for plant and animal life. The lack of vegetation had exposed the the ground to extreme denudation.
Dirk had made this his home for the past three years. Existing on trash thrown from passing vehicles on the nearby highway or occasional forays four miles away at the interstate exit where the giant green dumpsters were like dining at five star restaurants for him. The end was near and he knew it.
Harry comes in around nine. The regular crowd has been there since eight. Been that way since ’96. Taking his seat at the piano he turns and surveys the crowd. He knows they all have to be back in their coffins by sunrise.
There’s Sara dressed in her finest white gauze and her head topped by a red bandana. Over in the corner is Old John still trying to pick up Sadie. She told him to drop dead ten hears ago. And he did!
The keys on the piano have turned to decayed wood. The sound doesn’t have to carry far.