Friday, September 30, 2011

Dark Paige pt3


     Dave pulled into his driveway about fifteen minutes after Paige and Lana had left for Nick's.  He needed to gather some clothes and things for Carrie while she stayed with his brother.  Dave had no intention of staying at Ray's himself however.  This had to end and he would be the one to have to end it.  There would be no quiet sweeping of affairs under the rug this time.  He had to make sure it was really over for Carrie's sake. 
    He gathered his briefcase, took his keys out of the ignition of the sedan and headed into the house to prepare for Paige to come.  It was only a matter of time before she came back to claim her life again and Dave knew he had to be ready before she did. 
     He laid his briefcase on the hood of the car, opened it, and took out the little snub-nose 38 Ray had given him outside of McDonald's when he saw what his brother intended and that he wouldn't be able to change his mind.
     "Take this at least Dave."  Ray had said handing him the gun.  "Hopefully you won't need this but if you have to stop something just pull back the hammer back, point, and squeeze the trigger."
     Dave had only taken the gun from his brother as a gesture.  He didn't plan to use it, but he now found himself removing it from the briefcase and placing it in his jacket pocket for easier access.  Just a security blanket he told himself.  I'm not gonna use it.  At most its for show.  Hell, I won't even need it.  He tried to convince himself of this but made sure to check that it was loaded all the same.


     Paige opened her eyes slowly.  She had fallen asleep in a weird place again.  This time she was outside in what looked to her like the woods.  She had awoke lying in grass surrounded by trees near a little creek.  she could hear the water babbling downstream above to insects and birds.  She sat up slowly and looked around herself trying to place her surrounding or even remember getting to where she was.  She had no idea about the where or even scarier for her any at all of the how. 
     She fought back the growing panic in her stomach and tried her best to reassure herself that everything would be OK.  It wasn't just the not knowing that scared her, because while the blackouts were frightening this wasn't the first time she had ever found herself in a strange place, it was the idea that she was lost in the woods and night was coming that was terrified her.
     Her heart was racing in her chest but she just kept looking frantically around herself  trying to figure out where she might be and to decide what she should do next.  She was running out of daylight.  By the look of it she was guessing it was probably five o'clock or so.  She had to get out of these woods before dark.  There would be no fighting back the panic after dark.  She scanned her surrounding trying to place anything she could.  Nothing clicked.  She was lost.  That much she at least did know. 
     "Calm down girl."  She told herself.  "I got myself here so I can get myself out." She looked around herself again slowly trying to fight through the growing panic and think clearly.  She tried hard to think of anything.  Anything she may have been told or might have heard about what to do when your lost.  Her Dad had been a hunter but she was totally against it and had taken no interest at all in her Fathers hobby.  She hadn't even been a girl scout.  Still she had to have picked up something useful from TV or movies at least in her 37 years.  "Think Paige", she said to herself. 
     She walked toward the little creek because her mouth was feeling very dry.  She was pretty sure she could drink from that creek.  She wasn't happy about it.  She liked Evian herself.  She had never drank directly from a stream before but her choices were very limited right now and she was very thirsty.  She used her hand as a cup, filled it with water and brought it to her mouth to drink.
     God, her mouth was so dry.  The first handful didn't seem to do anything but she hadn't gagged on it.  She scooped up more and brought it up to her mouth to drink but when she looked down she noticed the blood. 
     There was what looked like blood on her hand now that hadn't been there before.  Smeared and looking slightly watered down but she was sure it was blood.  Blood from her mouth?  She dumped her hand out and rubbed her mouth and then looked at her hand.  More watery red.  She then began to taste it as the water she had drank watered down the dried blood caked in her mouth.  That coppery taste.  She plunged both her hands in the creek and began to feverishly try to wash her face and mouth of the blood.  She got more water and rinsed her mouth over and over till the taste dissolved and she began to actually be able to taste the water.
     She decided she had to have badly bit her tongue when she fell although it didn't hurt at all but it had to be that because if not that then what.  That thought satisfying her for now she drank more of the creek water and moved back to her larger problem.  Getting out of these woods before dark.


      Lana pulled back into the parking space at the little grocery store near the trailer and gathered up the beer and other bags from her trip to the store, she began to wipe down the steering wheel and anywhere else she remembered touching with her shirt tail. 
     Nick wouldn't have given her the credit to think of doing that but she was smarter than he gave her credit for.  She was no dummy.   She finished cleaning up the Jeep, tossed the keys onto the passenger side floorboard, and gathered up her bags and the beer and headed off toward the trailer. 
     It wasn't far at all she could already see the rebel flag Nick used as a curtain in their bedroom window from where she was.  She shifted Nicks twelve pack to her other hand because the weight of it was digging into her fingers.
     Finally she reached the small set of stairs that led up to her mobile home.  She set the groceries down and went to open the door.  Locked.  Lana began to knock on the trailer's flimsy door.  "Come on guys, really funny.  Open this damn door before I pour your stupid beer out in my garden you couldn't bother watering at all while I was gone."  She waited.  No answer.  She banged harder.  "Come on dammit."  Still nothing.  "Fuck.",  Nick never locks the house, she thought to herself, especially not when he's home.
     She stared at the door again and then all the sudden a wave of cold jealousy crept over her.  Of course, they had gotten rid of her.  She was so stupid.  "That Lil whore."  She hissed through her teeth as she grabbed a small stone from next to the rickety porch and used it to bust the small panes of cheap glass in the trailer door.  She reached her hand through the new opening, not noticing the considerate cut she opened on the fatty part of her upper arm as she did so, and unlocked the door.


        "You think I should've let Dave go back to that house Suze?"  Ray asked his wife across their kitchen table while Carrie played out back in the yard.  "I'm scared somethings gonna go wrong baby, I have a real bad feeling."
     "Well, hon."  She said reaching across the table for Ray's big hand and holding it in hers, "What kind of bad feeling?"
     "The I fucked up kind Suze.  Fucked up bad."  He hung his head and stared between his feet at the linoleum of their kitchen floor.  "He wouldn't use that gun I gave him if he needed to."  He said looking back at his wife.  "I know he wouldn't."
     "You really think he'll need to?"  She asked still clutching her husbands large strong hands in her small feminine ones.
    "God, baby I hope not because he'd never really hurt Paige.  That's how she almost killed him."


     Dave frantically swept the two story house gathering anything he thought could be used as a weapon and locking every window and door.  He put all the items he had deemed dangerous in the mud room, Paige's name for the little junk room off the laundry, and locked the padlock the child safety people had installed before they brought Carrie home from the hospital.  He then went back past the kitchen and unlocked the bolt on the front door.  He stared at the handle lock for a second and then unlocked it too.  One way in.  He walked back to the kitchen table, pulled out his chair at the head and reached into his suit coat hanging on the back of the chair pulling out a new pack of cigarettes and a brand new lighter.
     "Hello you bastards."  He said while packing the cigarettes against his palm.  "I should have known you'd be back." 
     He pulled a cancer stick from the pack and lit it inhaling cautiously but still he gagged nonetheless.  "Dammit."  He chocked out with a puff of smoke but once he had regained his breath he pulled off the cigarette again even deeper this time.  It went down a little easier now and just like that Dave was back on the old wagon.  He reached into the front side pocket of the suit coat and pulled out the little 38 and laid it on the table with a chilling clunk.  He sat and stared at the weapon as if it were the first time he had ever seen it and was trying to figure out what it was.  He inhaled again and spun the little gun slowly with his left hand not even aware he was touching it.
     Paige would be home anytime now and Dave knew it.


     Paige decided to walk along the little creek in the direction the water was moving.  She seemed to remember her Father telling her you should stay put when your lost but forget that.  Those bastards may have knocked her out and ditched her in the woods but she had things to do and wasn't about to wait for a damn search party that wouldn't be coming.  Plus the idiots had forgotten to take the cash when they ditched her so all she had to do was find the road, get cleaned up and she'd be ready to go see Dave.  So, her mind made up, Paige started forward.

To be continued...


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