The Last to Leave
This is my third attempt. The first was Abandoned. The second was Abandoned Again. And this is my last attempt; I've rewritten this to death.
The Last to Leave
The caller ID on my phone read, “Jill Byron.” I had just been to a meeting with Jill, a couple of hours ago. I quickly picked up the phone. “Hello.”
Shocked! I heard crying. “You left me alone! I was alone. It was dark. I was scared—all alone!”
I-I-I didn’t know what to respond. I thought back.
Jill was traveling from Medfield to Holliston’s Community Center. She didn’t know the way. We made arrangements to meet at a shopping plaza on Rte. 109, in Medway. The actual directions were simple. I’m sure she could have found the Holliston Community Center on Rte. 126, herself. All you do is take Rte. 109 until it intersects with Rte. 126. Then you take Rte. 126 towards Holliston, until you come to your destination.
And we did meet at the plaza and she followed me to the meeting, which wasn’t long. It just ended a little while ago.
But here is Jill sobbing.
“I’m sorry. I thought you were following me. Everyone left the meeting at the same time. I thought you were behind me.” I did remember thinking that I hoped she was in one of the cars behind me. I was first, and everyone else poured out of the parking lot, one right after the other. I don’t know how that happened. So what did happen?
Jill seemed collected now as she told me her story. First, she couldn’t believe that I, and everyone else, were gone. She was hurt and bewildered to find herself so suddenly in this situation. We were all together laughing and talking and then suddenly it was dark; it was quiet; she was alone. She felt intense fear.
She bowed her head in prayer. The limbs and leaves of the nearby trees also bowed, as the energy in the air condensed and collected itself into a whisper of a breeze that grew and grew into a powerful wind. Wispy shadows reached and stretched towards her. Jill sensed an evil engulfing the car in its shadows.
She looked around for a person? An explanation? Her only answer was the shaking of leaves and …and a murmuring. A sound that grew louder. A chanting that grew vulgar with throaty moans creeping out of the woods.
The wind gave a howl and suddenly Jill saw a group of people—weird people. Some had arms and legs missing. Their walk was a heavy stagger. Their eyes were all wide, wide open, with blank stares. Yikes, some had no lips.
She made sure the doors were locked. Jill was shaking as she dumped her pocketbook out looking for her keys.
Where were they?
She started to cry. “Help.” She couldn’t think.
They had reached her car and started to shake it. They were trying to get in. Jill was paralyzed.
Her eyes mirrored terror. Her screams were frozen in her mouth. Her heart stopped.
"Are you OK, Miss?"
Jill blinked. Knocking on her window were some people. They were carrying brooms, vacuum cleaners, and other assorted cleaning supplies. A radio played in the background. The cleaners, they were the cleaning people, of course.
"Do you need help?"
"No, no, I'm fine," she said, as she inserted the key in the ignition and drove off like she was being chased by zombies.