A car outside


A harsh buzzingi jolted me awake. I groaned involuntarily and slapped my hand over my loudly vibrating phone. Cracking one eye open slightly, I peeked at the screen.

No caller ID.

Irritated, I hurriedly declined the call and turned my head to sleep.


No sooner had I closed my eyes, that the vibrating began again. I jerked my head back and declined again, not curious as to which telesales company saw fit to call at 2am. I went to put the phone on airplane mode, when a message notification popped up on the screen. I stopped.

Telesales companies don’t text.

Thoroughly confused, I quickly went to open the notification.

It was a picture.

My heart sank into my knees as I soaked my sheets with a sudden cold sweat.

I leapt out of bed, my heart pounding feverishly. I pulled my asthma pump from my bedside drawer and inhaled twice, quickly. The walls were pulsing so loudly around me. So loudly that, I almost didn’t hear my phone ring for a third and final time.

I answered.

“Who is this?” I whispered.

An cheery sounding, automated voice replied, “A car awaits you outside. Do not alert anyone. Do not bring anything. Be in the car within 5 minutes. Thank you for your cooperation. Your countdown starts now.” The line went dead.

I glanced around, trying to make sense of what was happening. Only 5 minutes remaining

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