Sunday, April 17, 2011
ExcerpTueday: Bri Clark
As I sat among the group of obnoxious youth, I considered my options. I was far away from home, arrested and without hope of release. This was my third arrest and this one was serious. I had stolen a diplomat’s car. My family would not come to my aide. They hadn’t a clue where I was. Therefore, I would go to either jail or I could escape. Suddenly as the overwhelming force of being cornered enveloped me that all too familiar cold crept inside and I felt no more fear. All I knew was survival. It was as if hidden strength pulsed through me and just before I thought, I would burst an officer came, fitted his sausage like fingers under my arm and pulled me up. I allowed him to lead me down a secluded hallway. At the end was a door to the right within it was a man I could only describe as a living serpent…and I loathed snakes.
“Thank you officer that will be all.” The serpent said as he slyly passed a bill. The officer left. As I stood motionless yet still unafraid in the middle of the room, the snake inspected me. I reciprocated the action.
He was short with a stocky build. Dark hair with the tiniest hint of salt framed a round head boasting a long pointed nose sitting high above tight thin lips. Muddy green eyes roamed up and down my frame as he continued his glaring inspection circling me. The cold that swept across me earlier was violently replaced by ice. It moved like a fine mist through me and then solidified into hard shards within my skin. It wasn’t a feeling of pain but of protection. He finally stopped and stood in front of me. Even as a girl of sixteen and five foot eight inches he had to look up.
“Yes, yes…” he exclaimed. His voice added to my edginess. “Marie you are definitely what I have been waiting for.” When I met his eyes, he jerked away and smiled a wicked grin. He sat down behind a desk and indicated I sit in the chair opposite him. I chose to stand. An intake of breath, the continued smile and shake of his head communicated his irritated amusement.
His demeanor seemed to change as he looked through the papers on his desk. “It seems you are in a bit of trouble.” he commented as he picked up a paper read it and then chuckled. As he cast it aside I saw my name in bold red ink. “The ambassador of Egypt’s personal car. That is no easy feat,” he exclaimed. Then the smile vanished and the arrogance came out in full force “This is exactly what got my attention. I have a proposition for you, Ms. Gallagher.” The enunciation of the s in Ms reminded me again of how much I hated snake. I could tell by his posture and use of my last name he was trying to comfort me but also assert his dominance. I arched an eyebrow in response.
“My name is Abram. I am a man of many talents and unlimited means.” Sitting straight up in his chair and interlocking his on the desk he continued. “One such talent is that I am never refused. Keep that in mind as you consider my offer.” I considered his name instead, after only hearing it once before by my grandfather. He had told a story of a righteous man from the Bible. As I compared the two Abrams I knew this man was not worthy of his namesake.
“You can either do a lengthy jail sentence in an adult prison, which I can assure you the ambassador will pursue…or you can come work for me. You have no family, no money, or friends. Your little cohorts out there are cutting pleas as we speak.” As I felt cornered again my relief didn’t come from ice or cold but from the deep growl of a furious Irishman.
“MARIE AILIN GALLAGHER, WHERE ARE YOU?” Patty, my angry Irish grandfather bellowed. He had learned to yell over the noise of a crowd while in command of the Irish Republican Army. Abram looked toward the door. I bent down low over the desk and forced him to meet my eyes. I don’t know what he saw but he began to sweat, couldn’t blink or look away. As I opened my lips the voice that spoke was not my own but something much more fearful.
“Then let me be the first to oblige you Abram.” My lips spread into a wicked involuntary smile as a sense of deep satisfaction filled me. “I refuse.” I said and left. Walking down the hall toward the sound of my furious Patty’s voice I knew two things. One I would never forget that man. I had never reacted that way with anyone before. And two, facing my Patty was a whole lot better than whatever Abram had planned for me.
Author /Speaker/Marketing Liaison for Astraea Press