Wake Up Call

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

About a wake up call.

I can't talk, what is in my mouth. I have a gag in my mouth. My hip hurts. Where am I, what is going on here? I can't see much. My hands are tied behind me. I can't think of anyone who wanted me to shut up that much. How did they get me under here? Whoever they are. I don't really hear anything.

 

Oscar is jumping up and down, waving his arms and chatting up a storm. He is doing it too fast, I can't interpret squirrel that fast. I can see a little of the yard. It looks like I am just under the house. This is crazy. What have I missed? Oscar is scampering away. I have to get this gag off. I have not gone this long without making a sound since... well I can't think of a single time so let's just say... Furthermore, I have never been this quiet.

 

I can see the bedspread coming out of the wheel barrel and laying all over the ground. That answers the question of how. But Why? Thank goodness the ground is not that hard. The rain we had the other made it softer, but it has been log enough not to be muddy. Boy, my hands hurt. I can feel the tightness around my wrists. My feet are tied, but not as tight. Maybe I can get my feet to lose. I suddenly had a flashback, then decided to stop and listen. Then I wonder why I am mentally whispering to myself. I gotta test myself. It is Friday, Trump is the President, my birthday... let's not discuss that one. The squirrel's name is Oscar... I am okay. Now back to listening to the world around me.

 

Great, I wonder if whoever got me under here knows about the snakes we found under here, in this exact spot just a few weeks ago. I think if I rub my face against the ground, I can work this gag lose and yell for help. Gad, I am really getting dirty. Ouch, my head hurts. Boy I, hurt, I have a head throbbing on one side. Such a headache. My heart is going ninety to nothing. I gotta calm myself down. I gotta stop breathing so hard. I feel the dirt grinding into my skin. Thank goodness I wore jeans. The stretch pants I had on yesterday would not have offered me much protection. What is going on? I am so frustrated. The rope on my wrists is so tight. I am an old lady, minding my own business, well almost. I hear scratching.

 

I can't believe what I am watching. Then I thought the wildlife people gathered them all up. Not only that, but I don't even have shoes on if it wants to bite me. What is that? I gotta wiggle around and see what it is. OMG... a true bandit. That has to be the biggest raccoon I have ever seen. I see stuff all over the place. He has something shinny in his mouth. It looks like a ring. I gotta blink to clear my eyes. Oh, my hips hurt. If I dig in the dirt with my right foot, maybe I can wiggle around and see better. It worked, Yeah.

 

Would you look at that... No one will believe me. Here comes another one. He, too, has something in his mouth. It is a watch... looks like a man's watch. I gotta raise my head a bit. I see those silly little balls of foil I used to play fetch with Oscar.  As I lay here watching and thinking, what if no one finds me? Without food and water, I could lay out here and die. I gotta try harder. If I could just get something, loses. I may have to use my legs to pull myself around and then use them to pull myself out into the open. Maybe someone will see me. I take a deep breath before I start trying to push myself out of the opening. Oh, that hurts. Shooting pain right up my leg, I can feel the dirt caking on my feet.

Oh. I hear something. I hear voices.  Yes, I hear the chief of police. What? He is talking to someone about where I am. I hear another voice. “You gotta be kidding me.” I hear heavy footsteps.

"Oscar, where is she?”

"You are not fool-in' me, you ain't talking to no squirrel. I did not fall off the turnip truck yesterday.”

"Why don't you just shut up, kid? You are in enough trouble.  You best keep your mouth shut. The chief better find Jane in good condition, are you will really wish you”

"Shut up, old man. You don't scare me. You ain't gonna hurt me. I know what is happening all over now. I am from California. Furthermore, I know you don't dare hurt me. Besides, I was not going to take anything over fifteen hundred. That means you won't charge me, and you will have to let me go. You are just an old man. You and I are the same. Your old and I am young. Other than that, we put our pants on the same way every day.”

"Kid, do you know you are in Texas?  We don't like any criminals no matter what the value of it.  I can throw you in jail and take my time finding a judge to have a bail hearing... Besides, the closest bondsman is shut down right now. He will not be open for at least another three hours. You got that wrong, sonny, I put my pants on by hanging onto a chair. Now, shut up. You may be younger, but my patience is thinner.”

I see him, I see him. I can't stop the tears. He pulls the gag loose. “Oh, Oscar... Chief, am I glad to see you. How did you know I was in trouble?”

"Watch your head, Jane. Can you push with your legs?This opening is not tall enough for me to get a hold of you".

I am wiggling and twitching. Oscar, Oscar, stop. He is kissing all over my face. What a good little squirrel he is.

"I came over to give you a wake-up call. I needed to tell you about a group of thieves that has hit the neighborhood lately. I know you are home most of the time. I was going to give you some binoculars to watch the houses for me. Your house is located, so you can see all the other houses. Besides that, the front door was locked. I have never known you to lock your front door. I started looking around. I called for you and I encountered this kid going through your kitchen cabinets. Can you tell me what happened here? I could see him through the window, but it took me a minute to remember where you hid that key in case the house ever got locked up. I think we got the ring leader in your living room. How are you, do you need me to take you to the hospital?”

"I'm feeling great.” Oscar on my shoulder, I am once again free. Boy, my hip is sore. I can't really decide how I feel right now. Anger at the guy who put me here, but pure delight to discover I have a protector in Oscar and the chief. “By the way, chief, I know all about your gang of thieves. If you get the wildlife people out here one more time. There is a raccoon family under my house. They have a pretty good stash piled up under there.”

Oh, it is wonderful to hear the chief laugh. He is laughing so hard. Now we both are laughing. I come through the door. “Hello, officer. What have you got there?”

"This young man was going through your kitchen cabinets. Now I understand why he was taking his time. He had you stashed."

I did not mean to talk so loud, but could not help myself. I looked at this huge kid and asked, "Why put me under the house?" I know I was huffing and puffing, and my face was red. Likewise, I was so upset. I had my hands on my hips and was staring at him. The chief and the other officer were also waiting for an answer.

"I been watch-in' this house for a spell. No one hardly ever comes around. But there are windows in every room. Too easy for anyone to see what is go-in' on. It was dark when I started this thing. You were snoozing... earning your social security when I realized the front door was open. I figured if I put you under the house I could get away clean. You never saw me and would not know what to tell the cops." He lowered his head and stood up. He must be about six foot six. I judged him to be about the same height as Ray, my third husband.

"How were you planning on getting away?"

"I was going to find your keys and take your van."

I started laughing.  So did the chief.  "That van has had a dead battery for almost 3 months now.  Does your mother know what you were doing? I know we are all having problems right now but this is no way to solve them. You saw the condition of the yard. Why not offer to mow it. I would have paid you for that. Why not ask for work instead of taking, excuse me, instead of stealing? You know, if you had come to the door and told me you needed help, I would have found some way to help you."

He rolled his eyes and said, "Yeah, like I believe that."

"Chief, when you get back to the station find out what his mother's phone number is and call her. Let her know what her son has been doing." I saw the kid shaking his head with a pleading look. I then looked him straight in the eye. "I look like a sweet old lady, but I am not." I backed up and patted the chief on the back. You do what I said. Give his mother my phone number. If it is a family thing... maybe I can help." I nodded to the other officer who was pulling his arm towards the front door.

The kid starts to mumble. “I would have had her cleaned out within an hour. I got hungry. Those two stupid dogs of yours ain't much for protection lady. You were sleep-in with the TV going full blast. One pop on the head and you were out like a light. It took me longer to get you under the house than anything else. Hell, I didn't even have time to get your TV-out. Boy, this is a bust.”

"Chief, the young man is right, this is a bust.” I am grinning, the officer is grinning, and the chief is leading the young man out to the squad car. You really don't know how bad it could have been a kid. I could have died under there and you could be going in for murder. You could be getting hung for all the theft in the neighborhood. You have no idea how lucky you are today. I work with a lot of kids, of all colors and nationalities. Choices, it is about the choices you make, not the color of your skin, your background, or even your circumstance.  In all situations, there is right and wrong.  You need to ask yourself, 'What is the right thing to do?'  Then do it."

I took a deep breath as I stood on the front porch. The chief had helped him duck his head to put him in the back of the squad car. Just before I turn back to go into the house I called out to the chief, “Thanks for the wake-up call.”


Submitted: December 31, 2020

© Copyright 2021 Texasjane. All rights reserved.

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