Photo and Story
by Gretchen Fogelstrom
Careening along the high cliff road, the Spitfire kept spinning out at each turn. Frank had to make it.
If I’m late, no, can’t think that way. I will make it. Damn this car.
Inside the cabin, the clock was ticking. It was one of the old fashioned ones and its tick was loud. A heartbeat. Her heartbeat. Was the ticking getting faster? The clock had been placed in the only direction her secured head could see. She squeezed her eyes closed. He wasn’t going to make it.
Abruptly the door swung open and a man in a red sweatshirt walked in and cut the bindings holding her to the chair. He grabbed her still tied arms and forced her up. Out the door and towards the cliff. The clock had two minutes left on it. It wasn’t fair. He has two minutes! “He has two minutes!” she screamed. The man just laughed and yanked her forward. “Best to be prepared and ready to go” he said in a leisurely way, as if he knew something she didn’t.
As the cliff drew closer she could hear the crashing of the waves down below. It was a short drop, but the sharp rocks at the bottom would end her. She craned her neck to the road, wishing for headlights.
As she reached the precipice, toes shoved to the very edge, she thought she heard the Spitfire. She struggled in the arms of her captor, twisting to see if he had come. The red sweatshirted man lost his grip for one second. And as she turned, searching the road for headlights, her foot slipped. The cliff edge crumbled. It was if she were floating. Floating.
The Spitfire rounded the corner at 12 midnight exactly.
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