A Stroll To Remember

Intro: Entry #5 of Sanjana’s story. 
She tugged impatiently at the end of her shirt and spread it tightly over her mouth.
She needed to eliminate any noise her body was making, involuntary or not. She had to feign not being present for the consequences would be…well she didn’t want to find out.
Droplets of sweat were trickling down her neck from the ends of her hair, tempting her to fall from her crouch to cure the itch.
“Mind over matter”, she reminded herself, she could not move as her shadow may give her away.
Her heart was racing as she perked her ears towards the direction of footsteps she heard not too far away.
This was the first time in years she began to pray, not as sincerely as she wished though, as she was simultaneously keeping close attention to all the thoughts entering her mind.
She couldn’t give up yet, she had to be smart, all this adrenaline she felt pumping through her veins had to be used to help her get out.
She had to filter through the fear and focus on the flight and fight.
The last time she checked, it was 2 am. She was on the trail of finding her bus stop, but ended up completely lost.
Within a second, she found herself cursing at her phone for draining out. Then she starting cursing at herself for being so inadequate without it. After this, she cursed the city she was in and wished she was back home.
“How is this even a real city? There are no taxis on the street, no people around? I can hear myself breathe for heaven’s sake, this is unreal”.
Panic started to set in, she was a a smidge too intoxicated, her friends were all too, and after leaving the bar- she knew everyone would be heading straight to bed. No one would know she was gone.
That’s when she saw him, “Oh thank goodness”, she thought, “someone to help!” As she picked up speed on her heels and was going to yell out to grab his attention, she came to an abrupt halt. She felt her knees weaken and only managed a gasp.
Despite the night’s darkness, her mind managed to figure what she was seeing was a cloaked man dragging along an unmistakable body.
The boy in his hands looked unnaturally bent, as though a lifeless piece of wire, but unnervingly he did not look as though he was in any sort of discomfort. This immediately crossed out the possibility of him being passed out, or even asleep.
She couldn’t fathom what was happening, she didn’t try to allow her mind to explore either, she could not handle anything of that sort right now. Her mind needed some sort of calm, and she was definitely going to make ignorance her bliss.
Her reflexes instinctively caused her to jump back. He hadn’t seen her yet, and any fool would know that it would be best if things stayed that way.
This brought her to the position she was in right now, crouching behind a wall hoping this man would disappear, hoping for some direction as to where to go…
As she began to hear the approaching grunts of this man accompany his footsteps, she realized she had to abandon her hopes and face the reality of having to make a quick decision.
She was in no state to run, she didn’t even know where to run to. This means she had to fight, and she didn’t have much more time left to hide. She put her hand in her purse and found a pair of earrings she had taken off a little earlier.
Forcing all the strength she could from her shaky hands, she straightened out the hooks of them and mentally prepared herself.
She would charge at him and claw the hook into his eye. She didn’t know if this would work, she didn’t know if she had the ability to do this, but she had no other option.
After counting to three, she jolted up and yelled ready to charge towards the direction she was so sure she heard him coming from.
Nothing, no one, no where. Tears were uncontrollably running down her face, her chest was heaving ferociously up and down. Her hand was outright holding the hook straight ready to attack. She was completely isolated.
Out of no where, suddenly, she was hit with extreme brightness and then extreme darkness.
She woke up to the smell of orange juice and a pounding pain in her head.
“What’s going on”, she asked the nurse with the tray in her hand.
“You were brought in here last night by the police”, the nurse replied, “they found you when they were making some rounds, looking disheveled, after which you passed out. They will be in here soon for some questioning”.
“Did they find the man with the boy?” she asked.
“What are you talking about? No one but you was there, they had been around that area for at least 30 minutes before they found you”, the nurse answered looking slightly concerned now.
“Are you feeling ok? What’s your name?” the nurse asked her.
“I know my name, I’m fine, I need to talk to the police, I saw something messed up last night”, she retorted. She despised the fact that the nurse was making her seem loose in the head.
“They will be here soon, until then eat and take some more rest”, the nurse said.
As soon as she was alone again, she rummaged through her bag and took out her phone.
Evading all the hundreds of messages and missed calls, she googled “Missing boy, Main Street”.
The top search result rendered: 1957 Main Street lost boy found- Body brutally beat and dragged left to die by step father…
She felt everything go dark again.

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