The Box (Part 1)
Her hands shook while she placed the item in the box. She was a professional, had done this many times before. Why was she nervous? Charles could only think, it was because she knew the gravity of the situation. He was filled with excitement, but also deep fear. Was it going to work? If it did not, what would he do? With that thought the elation evaporated and negativity abound into distress. She handed it over to him, bound and protected. Nobody would know and that is how it had to be. No words exchanged just awkward looks. It was time to go.
Taking a different exit then when he entered, he hoped to blend into the crowds and the night. If anyone knew where he had been it all could be over. Bundling up, he wrapped the scarf around his face to obstruct the bitter cold but also mask his identity. The plan had worked so far, but nothing could be left for chance.
The box, the size of a toaster, held tightly in his arms. All of his might securing it. Sirens echoed in the night reminding him, this was not the safest city. More uncertainty plagued his mind. Was this a safe street? Did he need to take another course? Then Maddie entered his mind. What a wonderful girl. Would this get to her in time? Right now she was a hostage and could not get away. It was partly his fault. She had no idea. That did not matter, he was against time.
His black loafers hit that hard-cold cement faster in an attempt to make-up what had been lost. At the next corner he took a left. Then unexpectedly he noticed someone familiar. But he could not be sure. If he peered back his cover would be blown. Did they see him? The next subway tunnel was just ahead, there he could elude anyone following. His steps became even faster, but a new sound joined. Echoes of others. Still could not look back. If it was them everything would be lost.
Reaching the stairs two officers were coming up. Maybe they could help, Charles thought. At the same instance, Charles remembered he was not in good standing with the police. He quickly looked down to avoid eye contact. The footsteps from behind got louder. Nobody could help, he was on his own.
I write this to make my joy complete!
Eric S McCoy