My hand shook violently as I fumbled with my keys. I tried to quiet the jingling, tried to unlock the door quickly without making much noise, tried to get inside before he caught up with me. I turned the knob and rushed through the door, locking it with a click behind me. My heart pounded in my ears as I shoved my back against the closed wooden door and shut my eyes. I held my breath as the footsteps echoed down the hallway. I prayed silently as they drew nearer, hoping they would walk past the door and keep going. I heard the sound of another set of shoes, and then the flick of a switchblade being released. I waited for the sound of tearing flesh but none came. Instead, the second pair of feet walked off in the other direction, the person seemingly unharmed.
My fingers tightened around the straps I’d been gripping as I waited for the sound of the blade being sheathed once more. The footsteps again began to move closer to the door, slowing down steadily. I nearly gave myself away when I felt something press against my lower leg, but I stifled the scream just before it left my lips. I slowly reached down and gently stroked the soft fur with shaking hands, afraid it might betray me with an attention wanting meow. My lungs felt like fire when I finally opened my mouth and breathed in the clean fresh air of my apartment. It was still a while longer before the pounding in my ears quieted and I forced myself to move. I slowly walked away from the door, sliding my hand along the wall to find the light switch. I flicked light onto the surroundings and waited for my eyes to adjust, then slowly headed towards the couch. I plopped down onto the closest bumblebee colored cushion and closed my eyes.
I reached my arm out, trying to hit the snooze, for just a few more minutes I wanted to sleep. Suddenly, shook myself into full wakefulness rapidly remembering where I was. I leaned across the couch and picked up the phone at the other end.
“Hello?” I yawned as I listened to the voice on the other end of the line.
I looked at my watch as Jessica responded and noticed the strap still held tightly in my grip.
“Hey, Jessica,” I said interrupting my friend, “I’ll call you back, okay?”
“Is everything alright? You want me to come over?” insisted Jessica.
“Wow, you look really pale,” said Jessica as she walked through the door. “You sure you’re okay?”
“Yeah, I’ll be fine…” I walked into the kitchen, with the teakettle whistling loudly through the apartment. “You want some tea?” I asked Jessica.
“Why wouldn’t you be?” Jessica looked over at her hostess, a look of concern in her navy eyes.
“Well, I went out to throw away the trash, no different then any other night,” I took a sip from the sunburned cup in my hand and then continued. “I was just taking out some trash, from the bathrooms garbage, from the kitchens, and the rooms, you know whatever needed to be emptied.”
“Well, half way to the dumpster, I heard some voices. At first I thought nothing of it, just two kids, I figured, taking a walk after sunset together. But then I noticed that there were three voices, all male. I couldn’t understand what they were saying, like they were trying to keep quiet on purpose. Then I heard a fourth voice, muffled, as if he was gagged or something.” I paused taking another sip of tea, then went on.
A little girls body dropped to the ground bleeding to death from stabs. The guys veered off onto paths with a triggered gun toward my apartment building, with no sign of guilt. I jumped over small hills and cracks, and ran through bushes that felt like a thousand needles poking at me, towards the lighted parking in front of my building lot to call for help. Hearing a noise, they slowed down considerably in the middle of the unknown path, then stopped. I urged myself to sneak quieter to make sure they didn t see me. We instantly made eye contact as I poked my head out from behind a polished car while trying to get to my building. I took a solid breath and went on. The men seemed to have scampered off and disappeared within seconds, not getting a superior description of there faces. I proceeded up to my building door watching for them I shrugged my shoulders and explained to Jessica what happened next.
I was shocked when one of the miniature, scruffy men escalated out from the elephant-sized area behind a lime pine tree, that I screamed in fright. The man slammed his foot on the ground, like he was a bull aiming at a red cape and ran towards me. The other men quickly appeared and soared ahead with him. The bombshell of being scared threw me down to the filthy ground. Rat rainwater soaked me as my head hit the gravel. I was shook up from the fall and relatively grimy. Yet I was able to sit up rapidly and run clear through the door of my building. I sprinted ahead and climbed up the mountainous steps to my apartment door. Leaving the litter, I scrambled for my keys; they lost me for a minute.