Daylight faded and the gas gauge’s needle dipped ever downward. I alone followed the black ribbon which wavered, shimmering as it grasped at the horizon. Flat, desolate county rolled past my windows, a study in beige monotony. The only interruption was the occasional posts on the roadside. Shoes dangled there.
With nothing better to do and the sound of my own wheels driving me crazy, I counted them, noting the numbers on my odometer. Mile markers, they marched in tune with my evaporating gas.
Three, two, one…
Lights materialized at the roadside. Gas. Food. Lodging. Last rest stop next 247 miles, the sign warned. My car informed me we were coasting on fumes.
“Guess we’re stopping,” I said aloud.
I gassed up, paid, parked and headed inside. The truck stop was full of people. They packed the greasy diner. The door’s bell tinkled, and the room grew silent, as everyone turned to stare. “Hotel California” crackled from the overhead speakers.
“H’bout we get you checked in and a blue plate?” an attractive face asked.
“You’re not going out in the dark, are you?”
I sensed the blackness behind me and quickly turned away.
“Got somethin’ to lose?”
I shook my head.
“He’s why you’re wearin’ those shoes,” he said to my stiletto clad feet.
The straps wound around my ankles like the chains encircling my heart.
“Don’t worry Darlin, we’ll help you to forget. Perhaps one night you’ll see the light and realize you’ve always held the key.”
Keep on writing.
Jo Hawk The Writer