Water Under The Bridge – Creative Writing Prompt
¡Hola! It’s another creative writing prompt! I have been contemplating writing this one for a while and before I knew it, it took on a life of its own. I started writing and had to stop because I got interrupted by my boyfriend and kiddo. When I looked back, I realized I didn’t conscientiously write that. Wow. That felt amazing. It’s something that has not happened in a long time. Welcome back to the writing life.
The Writing Prompt:
Write about crossing a bridge.
A million thoughts were running through her mind after she had finally made a decision. This decision was going to impact so many different people, but in her heart of hearts, she knew it was the right choice. It was time; again. She had done this a couple times before, and each time, it took a little piece of her and crushed it into a million pieces.
The nosy lawyer neighbor was bound to find out who she really was. All of her lies would come undone. She spent months constructing them and she wasn’t about to let a hot-shot lawyer unravel them. It was for her protection. No one could find out what really happened, no one could help. Dozens of neat, tightly wound lies had forced her to live a new life. A life that she had grown accustomed to, a wonderful life. She finally had friends – at arms length, a decent job, and she was considering going back to nursing school. She had been in this life for a couple years – the longest one yet. Still, that one distant, dark night of her past always haunted her and she always proceeded with caution.
With a glorious day ahead of her, Nicole stepped outside her small apartment. She started walking toward the library when she spotted an out of place silver car parked down the street. She stopped walking and stared for a few minutes. Whoever was in the car chose that moment to drive away. Add that to the list of weird things happening around her lately. First, it was the multiple hang ups to her home phone; she never carried a cell phone. Second, the feeling of always being followed. Finally, this one; a car driving off when she stops to look at it. It was almost like he had found her again.
Nicole arrived at the library with a scowl and greeted her co-worker, who always had his nose in a book. Daniel had mumbled his hello and went back to his book, something by Stephen King, as usual. She looked around to see how much work there was today. While Daniel managed the desk, her job was to shelf all the books to their rightful place. That was the part of her job that she loved, being able to seek out shelves of different books as she was putting books away. Her mental to-read list was always growing. She enjoyed reading all sorts of books; no book was off limit. Ever since she could remember, she loved books. At one point, she even pulled a “Matilda” and drug a wagon to the library to bring home all sorts of children’s books. Oh my, how many years ago that was. She was pushing 30 now and that was a distant memory.
The day went by pretty quickly, which was always a sign that something bad was about to happen. She shelved the last book, said her goodbye to Daniel, and stepped out of the library. She was met with a thunderstorm and a firm chest in front of her. “Oh, no. I’m so sorry!” she cried.
“No worries, Jennifer.” The stranger said.
She looked up and gasped. “Wha…. How… Um…” She couldn’t believe it. He had found her. She backed up and tried to open the door. The knob didn’t turn as she realized she locked it on her way out. Daniel was still inside completing paperwork from the day’s work. She tried to turn to bang on the door but a strong hand caught her arm.
“Scream and I will kill you.” He nudged a gun toward her and started pulling her down the stairs towards the street. “Let’s go.” Nicole numbly walked beside him as he was dragging her along. She spied the silver car again and wondered if it had been there all day. Thankfully, he was too busy to notice that she had been smart and dropped her small clutch before they left the step. When Daniel was done for the day, he would know something happened to her. They turned the corner and came upon the car. He pushed her into the backseat, put a blindfold over her eyes, and tied her hands to the headrest in front of her. There was no way he was going to let her escape. She desperately looked towards the library as they drove off, but there was no sign of Daniel. She prayed he would be done soon.
“Where are you taking me? Please.” Nicole begged.
The man looked back and her and said, “If you keep talking, I will tape your mouth shut. I am giving you the benefit of the doubt right now.” She quickly nodded. She knew how dangerous he could be.
She was quiet until they stopped. She wondered how far they had driven; it seemed like hours. As soon as his door opened, she screamed like her life depended on it. He quickly ran around to her door and pulled her out. “I told you not to scream.” He slams her on the ground as he pulls out a gun. He points it right at her with an unwavering hand.
“Please. There will be people looking for me. Please. Don’t hurt me.” She plead with trembling lips. “I’m so sorry. Please. Jason, please.”
He ripped off her blindfold and cried, “You left. What makes you think I wouldn’t find you? You should have gone farther than one state. Pretty stupid on your part.”
She knew it was stupid to leave, knew he would find her. It would only hurt her in the end, and here she was, sitting at the end of a barrel, pleading for her life. She shouldn’t have left him. It was so stupid. With the blindfold off, she looked around and figured out where they were. They were at an abandoned school, just one town over. Off in the distance, she heard a siren and prayed it was for her. “They’re coming for me, Jason. You won’t get away with this.”
He turned around to look and she chose that exact moment to tackle him in hopes the gun wouldn’t go off. It didn’t, and she was able to take him down to the ground. They wrestled and she was able to kick the gun away from him. He punched her and she rolled off him, putting her closer to the gun. She made a grab for it, ignoring the pain to her stomach, and started to stand up. She heard the sirens get closer and realized help was on the way. She pointed it at him and said, “Stay away.”
He lunged at her and the gun went off with a loud bang. She vaguely heard the voices around her as everything went white, then black. She awoke in a chair at the police station. Nicole sat up and looked around.
“Ma’am? Are you ok?” A familiar voice next to her said.
“Wh… Where am I?” She asked shakily. She looked around again, more alert. She realized where she was and turned to look at the person beside her. It was the nosy lawyer.
She saw Daniel come running towards her. “Oh my god. I’m so glad you’re ok!”
“How’d you find me?” Nicole asked curiously.
“You dropped your purse and when I handed it over to the police, they found a note saying ‘It was Jason’. They searched their records and found him, and put two and two together. You’ve been the missing girl, who has had the entire country searching for her for three years.”
Nicole started sobbing and reached out for Daniel. He grabbed her and just held her saying, “It’s ok. You didn’t do anything wrong. It’s all over.”
Everyone knew the truth. All of her lies came undone and it was like they didn’t care. She now lived in such a loving community that they did not give it a second thought. They took care of their own. She finally felt like she belonged somewhere. She was still Nicole, but underneath every layer of each lie she told, lies Jennifer. The wealthy woman who ran away from her abusive, murderous husband. Nicole finally crossed the bridge into a completely new life where her past didn’t matter, and it could no longer haunt her.
- April 27, 2015
- 2 Comment