Monday, March 7, 2011
Flash Fiction Friday: F3 – Cycle 21 – Defense Wins Championships
"Davis! What does my calendar look like for the coming week?"
"You have meetings all week, Mr. Redgard, sir. Most of them in locations downtown, sir, including one tomorrow at ten in the morning at the Tycon Building."
"Negative! I hate going to that part of town, especially Fridays. Here's a better idea, why don't you go in my stead, come back and disseminate the information to me Monday Morning before the weekly management meeting."
"Will do, sir" "And what should I tell the other attendees is the reason for my attendance in your place?"
"I could care less what you come up with, just make it believable! Make sure you call me after the meeting and let me know how things went. I'll be playing a round with some colleagues, so you may need to try my cell more than once." "That'll be all, Davis!"
Closing the doors behind him, Paul Davis exits his boss's office, stepping back out into the hallway. He turns on his heel, his legs slightly unsteady at the revelation, he would be attending a meeting of higher-ups in less than 24 hours. He fights hard against the panic rising within him and tries to calm himself through deep breaths and pleasant thoughts. Desperately, seeking to avoid his all too familiar reaction to heightened anxiety. With the light sweat cooling on his forehead, he mutters, "best to avoid that at all costs"
Arriving at his suburban apartment, Davis enters, places the Chinese Takeout on the counter, still struggling to clear his mind of thoughts of downtown, thousands of people rubbing against, brushing by, and nudging one another this way and that. In their chaotic scramble to out race everyone to destinations unknown. He shakes his head in disgust, at the random and disorganized nature of urban life in general.
Is this all there is? No wonder, so many wives seek fulfilment outside of marriage. The same boring...
He awakens, sitting bolt upright, heart pounding, with the base of his skull throbbing in rhythm with his heart. Extricating himself from his entangled, sweat dampened sheets, making his way to the balcony door, juxtaposed of the kitchen. He pushes aside the sliding glass door and steps out into the night air, hoping the light wind would assist in cooling his body as well as clearing his mind.
Why could he not control it? Those last thoughts before he awoke, he shudders when he thinks of where they originated. Although, it had served him well on occasion, affording him insight, he would otherwise have been unprivy to. Still, the intesity at times proved dizzying and always left him with an annoying headache. Aspirin nor Tylenol would alleviate the symptoms, only relaxation and empty thoughts. Seeing, the dawn of day is not far-off, he decides to take a seat on the cement balcony floor, pressing his bare back against the glass in an attempt to empty his mind of pressing thoughts.
With the arrival of the sunrise, he stands up ready to attend to his morning routine, having only succeeded in reducing the level of his anxiety.
The train downtown displays far more empty seats than he had imagined. Even with that, his anxiety level slowly builds as the train pulls into the station. The doors open and he rushes to be one of the first riders to exit the train.
"Hurry up already, so others can get on"
"Dang, I forgot my workout gear. I wonder if I have any leftover clothes in the office, they should be..."
"I don't care what the rules are, I'm finishing the rest of this..."
"Uggh, these cramps are almost unbearable, what are you lookin at..."
"I hope the timer doesn't go off prematurely..."
Pushing through the throng of riders on the platform, Paul rushes over to a uniformed police officer, pointing out the gentleman thinking about timers, describing the device as something he had seen in the suspicious character's backpack.
"Figures, something like this has to happen on my shift" "I'll check it out, move along", the guard waves his hand in a shooing motion, as he assertively moves in the direction of the train, while speaking into his hand-held radio.
After rushing away, climbing various escalators, he finally emerges on to street level, three city blocks away from his destination. He's immediately immersed into the flowing current of pedestrian traffic.
"Next time I won't..."
"Someone needs a shower..."
"Look at the bubble on tha..."
"Should have eaten breakfast, I'm..."
The onslaught continues, until he arrives in front of the building whose design resembles the seat of a toilet bowl. He enters the building with butterflies in his stomach and a throbbing headache with just enough time to arrive at the meeting on time.