It was a dark drive on an unfamiliar road. I didn’t feel lost because I didn’t care; I was being reckless. I was texting and steering my SUV when a severe weather alert came on the radio.  Looking up I realized there was no visibility, just my headlights being reflected back at me in a dense fog. I stopped the car but the wind was so strong I kept moving forward.

After a moment of panic, 4 men came into view. They were standing inside a canyon cave in front of a railing made of pipe that lead…somewhere. My car still wouldn’t stop and the men tried to help me, 2 on each side when I heard one yell, “It is no use she is going over.”  My car broke through the railing and I felt myself plummet into the unknown.

My stomach did a half dozen belly flops before my car landed in the water. I remember praying and thinking my husband and my daughter would never find me. I felt I was going to die.

When I realized the car wasn’t filling as fast I thought. So, I rolled down the driver’s side window and saw the wall of a concrete dam. I could reach it if I tried – so I got myself through the window and pulled myself onto the wall.

I felt such relief being out of the car but I was in the dark on a foggy night alone. All my belongings and my phone were swept away in the river.

I sat on the wall and noticed just over my shoulder to the left were lights. Thousands of flickering lights that ended up being large candles. They were lighting up an outside bar on the edge of a mountain. The women wore white gowns and all the men wore red robes.  I made my way closer and they were all just casually drinking and talking.

A woman, a waitress, asked if she could help me and I said I needed a phone. She didn’t seem happy about my request and everyone stopped talking.

A man in red came over and I repeated my request and I also told him I thought I needed a hospital.  He nodded and asked her to get me a phone. The phone I got was an antique and I couldn’t remember my husband’s number.

I called my mom and she was crying because I had been missing for 6 months.  She stopped suddenly and in a frantic voice asked where I was.  I told her I didn’t know and started crying when I got disconnected. The woman in white told me I needed to leave by midnight or I would become one of them.

I looked closer at them and noticed they had hooves for feet and their legs were furry. The man in the red robe came over and when he smiled all his teeth were sharp and thin. “Please, make yourself at home.” He said. “Before midnight I need you to tell me what religion you are” and he gestured towards a room that had 20 books lying on a table. As I passed each book they each had a strange symbol on the front. Some of the books were thin and some were thick.

I came to the last book. I knew it was the Holy Bible. But it wasn’t a book it was a bunch of crocheted squares laying one on top of the other. Each one a different scene was portrayed.

The group that had been drinking had filed into the room and I was surrounded by these other worldly creatures. They looked at me as if I was supposed to talk. “Pick your favorite quote and prove that you are worthy of that book” said a man who had walked in last.

I sat looking at the squares and I couldn’t think of one single quote and I knew I would never see the ones I loved again.


2 thoughts on “TOO LATE

  1. Perhaps if you took a drive, a ride though each state to mainland USA, you’d find a quote in each one as you pass through on your way; six months, what a time that would be, a nomad for two seasons, with ink, paper and a camera. How many worlds might you see? How many people might you meet?


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