My favorite social media site is Twitter. I have yet to heard of any “backstabbing” there, let alone witness anything like that at this site. I can’t make the same claim to other social media sites. I’ve seen the tag, #amwriting, several times, yet, for reasons I can’t begin to fathom, I’ve never posted using it before. Ludicrous, isn’t it?
Today is my first post using the hashtag, #amwriting.
When Caitlin watched the news the night before, the weatherperson had predicted snow, wet heavy snow. She went to bed grumbling about the cold and wet the morning would probably bring.
Just as the weatherperson had said, large sloppy snowflakes were falling from the dove-colored sky when she woke up. She peered down from her apartment window at her car sitting innocently against the curb. Most of it was just snow that would easily brush off, but it didn’t escape her attention that ice crystals were forming on the front and back windows. There was something else she noticed in the dim dawn light. Something that looked like a piece of paper was stuck to the window.
After a couple of pieces of toast and a mug of coffee, she got dressed and was ready to face the cold dreary world that sat out there past her apartment building. Gingerly, she maneuvered the icy steps to the street’s sidewalk. The wind gusted, almost pulling her knit hat off. As she approached her car, she realized that what she had thought was a piece of paper was, in reality, just a place on the windshield where the ice was thicker.
She retrieved the scraper from the backseat of her car and placed the hard plastic edge on the front window. It was then that she noticed there was scratched lettering in the place where the ice was so thick. You’re next!
What was that suppose to mean? Obviously, it meant trouble, but she couldn’t fathom who would do this. Her life was so drab. There wasn’t any reason for anyone at all to want to hurt her. Or maybe that was the exact reason why.
As soon as she got her windows scraped, she slid into the driver’s seat and started the engine. While she waited for the car to warm up, she pulled her cell phone from her purse and pushed in the numbers for her sister.
Mona’s voice was sleepy. “Hello.” She lived a few states west of Caitlin making the hour much earlier. Caitlin was positive she’d understand.
The car was taking forever to warm up. She could see her breath as she spoke. “Mona, there was a message on my car this morning. Kind of threatening.”
“Cat, do you know what time it is? Is there someone standing over you with a knife or a gun pointed at you?”
“Mona, I’m not kidding around. The message said, ‘You’re next!’”
“Cat, go to the police precinct nearest you and report it. Do not call me back. Cat, I’ll call you tonight.” And with that, Mona hung up on her.
Caitlin sat there watching the snow slide off the front hood. She should have taken a picture of the message. She looked behind her and pulled out onto the street.
The police station was a mere five blocks from her building. When she pulled into the small parking lot, she was sure she’d have to circle a few times before finding a place to park. However, as she rounded one aisle and was headed down the closer aisle, a car pulled out. The car behind her tried to squeeze past her to grab the slot but his vehicle was too wide. “Serves you right,” she said looking in her rearview mirror. She turned in and shut off the motor.
Surprisingly, no one was waiting to talk to the officer at the front desk. “Hi, cold morning, isn’t it?”
The officer peered up from looking at his papers. “They said it was coming. How can I help you.”
“I got a threatening message.”
“Let me see it.”
Crimson crept up her neck and covered her cheeks. “It was written in ice on my car. I forgot to take a picture of it. But it was there. Honest!”
“Okay. What did it say?”
The officer picked up the receiver of his desk phone and punched in four numbers. When he laid the receiver down, he said, “Officer Tanner will interview you.” He gestured to the swing gate on his right. “Just go through there and take a seat.
This continues on next month…
S/he walked out to find a message scraped into the frost on the windshield. —Today’s Author
“That’s what fiction is for. It’s for getting at the truth when the truth isn’t sufficient for the truth.” ― Tim O’Brien