I close my eyes against the bright car headlights that appear ahead of me. I wait for my eyes to readjust to the darkness after the car passes by. Disobeying my friends' wishes, I'm walking along the side of the road, alone, on my way home.
Kendra, my closest friend, was supposed to give me a ride after the party ended, but when one o'clock came and went the party was still going. And Kendra was wasted, as were all of my friends. Not wanting to cut any of their party time short, nor wanting to get into a car with a drunk college freshman behind the wheel, I came to the decision to walk home. In the dark. Alone.
So far, only a few cars have passed by me. And so far, every time one appears ahead of me I tense up. There have been a lot of young women going missing around the neighborhood. Which I really should have thought about before I came out here alone. Now, all I can do is be alert and cautious.
My parents warned me not to show up to my ex- boyfriend's party, but I had been firm in the belief that it wouldn't hurt me if I saw Jackson with another girl. Oh, how wrong I was. The second I spotted him across the room with a pretty petite blonde latched on to him, my heart wrenched. That's when I got the hell out of there.
If I never would have went, I never would have saw him with another girl, and I wouldn't be walking down a mostly deserted street at night.
When I hear the sound of a car engine, I quickly try to decide if I would be safest speeding up or slowing down. When the black car comes into view I decide it might be best to walk faster. Whoever's driving it has failed to turn on their headlights making it hard to discern anything but the cars color.
I keep my head facing forward, but my eyes are following the car from the corners of my vision. The car continuously slows down as it gets closer.
If that's not suspicious, I don't know what is.
I pick up my pace once more, right on the edge of running. As I get closer to the car ( or it gets closer to me) it continues to slow. Soon, I am just a few feet away, and the car comes to a stop.
I can't help but freeze.
What if this is the kidnapper who's been taking all those women? What on earth do I do?
The sound of an approaching engine makes me take a look over my shoulder. A car is coming up the road behind me. Without much thought, I stick my thumb out like a hitchhiker. For a moment I am afraid that the car will pass and I will be left alone with the possible kidnapper.
Thankfully, the car comes to a stop in front of me, blocking the black car from veiw.
I hurry forward to the passenger window. As it rolls down, I lean my head through the opening. The man sitting behind the wheel is young, but it's too dark to make out much about his features.
"Can you give me a ride? Just to the closest convenience store?" I ask as normally as I can manage so the panic I'm feeling doesn't come through in my voice.
He hesitates before he gives me a nod,"Get in."
I release the breath that I was holding,"Thank you so much!"
He acknowledges my gratitude with a single nod.
I reach in front of me and open the car door.
I hesitate before getting in, " ummm...."
I glance from him to my shoes which are caked in mud from the wet ground. The gaze I give him is questioning.
He follows my gaze and gives a small smile, "Don't worry about the mud I'm taking my car to get cleaned tomorrow anyway. So just get in."
I climb into the car with a timid smile on my face. Despite his reassurance about my muddy shoes, I try not to move my feet too much to avoid smearing the mud around. As I buckle my seat belt, I risk a look at the black car through the windshield and have to stifle my gasp.
The car is gone.I didn't hear its engine or its tires on the wet road. How could I not have noticed that the car left?
My new companion starts driving and I try to push the thoughts about the black car to the side so that I can be polite and make small talk but I can't.
The drive to the convenience store is a silent one. It starts to rain again and the sound of the droplets on the roof just seem to make the silence stand out more. I look out the window, lost in my thoughts, or rather my confusion, about the black car. I'm so involved in said thoughts that it takes me a second to realize that the car has stopped and that we are at the convenience store which happens to be just a short walk from my house.
I look over at the kind stranger beside me, "Thank you very much for the ride, I appreciate it more than you know."
"No problem. I'm glad to have helped." he smiles, " Stay safe."
I return his smile, "I will, have a good night."
I climb out of the car, careful not to spread the mud from my shoes all over his floor. I wave to him as he drives away. As I'm walking towards the stores entrance I realize that I never even asked for his name.
I shrug to myself. Whatever, I'm never going to see him again anyway. And with this thought, I open the door and enter the store.
Thank you for reading!