Thursday, September 29, 2011

Behind Schedule

 It had taken so long to get here, now that the end was in sight Charlie could hardly contain his excitement. Patience, he thought to himself. You've waited this long, you can wait a few more minutes. 

The subway car slowed for another stop and as people got off and more people got on Charlie gave up his seat to a young mother with a toddler and a giant stroller loaded with shopping bags.

"Thank you," she said, relief in her eyes as she sat down and pulled her son into her lap. Keeping one hand on the stroller to keep it from completely blocking the aisle.

The train slowed again and Charlie smoothed down the from of his suit jacket in nervous anticipation. MacPherson Square said the barely audible voice over the loudspeaker. He would still have a few blocks to walk but it was a beautiful fall day, he would enjoy it.

Years of patience, planning and focus had culminated in him finally getting the job he'd wanted since childhood. Of course, today would be the day his car wouldn't start. Luckily, his habit of leaving time for any eventuality had come in handy. That and the Metro station a block from his new apartment.

The doors to the car opened and Charlie stood to the side to let a couple of ladies exit first. He was just about to step onto the platform himself when the third woman, stopped abruptly in front of him and whirled around.

"My portfolio!" she gasped bumping into him as she tried to get back into the car. The tangle of their side to side dance lasted just long enough for the doors to begin to close. Finally just pushing past him, the woman raced to the seat she'd just left and grabbed the well-worn black messenger bag from under the seat. "Crap," she said looking up and seeing the platform disappear as the train entered the tunnel.

"Did you miss your stop too?" She asked coming to stand beside Charlie next to the door.

"No thanks to you," he muttered glancing at his watch. He still had 10 minutes to get to work. He didn't like the thought of cutting it so close on his first day. But what could he do? He took a moment to look at the Metro Map to see how far away the next stop would leave him.

"I'm sorry," the woman smiled up at him flashing him a smile, complete with dimples and a happy green eyes. "We can just get off at the next stop, its only a few blocks out of your way I'm sure."

Charlie nodded, before he could orient himself using the map, the train came to a stop and the doors opened. The woman grabbed him by the arm and pulled him out of the car. "Come on, I'll take you back to the square. I'm Erin, by the way. Where are you headed?"


This week’s Indie Ink Challenge came from Kayla, who gave me this prompt: write about a person who does everything "by the book". I challenged Hannah with the prompt: I've never done anything like this before. Are you sure it's safe?

I'm not thrilled with my work, but I want to keep working on these two characters. 


Tara R. said...

Their chance encounter and the tension from Charlie makes for some great potential when you expand on these characters. A wonderful start to their story.

K said...

This was actually a great start to a lovely story. You did an excellent job of building the tension and laying down the promise of an intriguing plot. You're definitely on to something good here.
- Karla

Tobie said...

Thank you both so much! I'm afraid most of the time my head is so cluttered with details and ideas that I have a hard time just getting out a simple (enough for the time allotted) response.