Trapped – part 2

Trapped – part 2


Jalen and MaryAnn are trapped in the ladies’ room of roadside diner.


“See what you did?” Jalen whispered.

“They can’t get in.

“How do you know?”

About a year ago, Billy Brooken busted the door in pieces chasing his whore of a wife. Big Mike actually spent the money to put a real door in because the women were complaining. Plus Mage, his wife put her foot down.” She slid a hand-rolled cigarette between her lips. “You gotta light?”

“Yes, I have a light.”

She stared. “Well.”

Jalen grinned. “It’s in the car.” He went back to work on the window.

“Jokes.” She laughed and pulled her flimsy blouse over her head, exposing her well-worn faded pink bra. “It’s hot in here, she fingered the large crucifix hanging from a chain around her neck. “We can’t stay in here forever, we’ll die of starvation.”

“We can eat the dog.”

The dog, a small puppy, laid in the far corner away from the door. They found it tied to the plumbing under the cracked porcelain sink. It appeared to be in good health; there was a note attached cloth belt, it read: IN A BAD WAY CAN’T PROViDE. She DON’T HAVE A NAME.
Maryann had taken the cloth belt, the type that goes through the loops of a sundress, from around the puppies neck. And named her Sunni; with an “i” she mentioned.

“Are we going eat her raw, you left the fire in the car? Hey, I think we are like … like characters in a Shakespear book.”

“Yeah,” Jalen said, “a Shakespear tragedy. You know everybody dies.”

“No, I thought everybody lived happy ever after in Shakespear books.”


“You really are a college boy ain’t ya.”

“I’m studying to be a building designer.”

“Oh, fancy schmancy. What’s that?”

“Well, in layman’s terms we design, plan and style residential and light commercial buildings.”

“You mean like drawings?”

“Typically, we begin by creating working drawings, which are eventually turned into actual construction plans. You’ve heard of blueprints, right?”

“Yeah, shuck, everybody heard of blueprints; I ain’t no dummy.”

Jalen stared at the shadow of his head on the cement floor, the shadow of the bars in the window framed his head like a jail cell.


Maryann followed his gaze. “Damn.”

“It’s gettin’ dark soon.”

Jalen picked up Sunni. “It might help if you take off your sunglasses.”

“Oh,” she tossed them across the room, “I’ll never see the sun again anyways.”

“Maybe we can use the dog as a distraction. Set it outside the window and when they follow I run to the car.”

“You still set on leaving me here.”

“Do you have a better idea? Because this knife is not working.” He points at her bag. “You got something in your bag? A nail file? Clippers?

“No. Yep, there’s a nail file but it smaller than the knife.” She offered to him. “I gotta pee. Don’t eat’em.”

“I’m too tired to eat.” Jalen looked in the mirror. “I look like shit.”

“What you say?”

“I said, DeCosta sounds like a rich family name.”

“My husband was rich; I mean his daddy was rich.”

“You were married?”

“Yep. You surprised?” When he didn’t answer she continued,

“We was married almost fifteen years. Most of it was good years even though I know he was cheatin’ on me. I have a son too. But Connor’s dad never really liked me. So when Connor and I split up he used all his fancy lawyers to take my baby from me. I haven’t seen him in over five years.”
He died three years ago, Connor, not my son, he drowned. He was a good swimmer I guess he got too cocky. One day he swam out too far beyond the bluff. His daddy, the rich one, took my child. He never liked me. Friggin’, Samuel Joseph DeCosta, that’s my boy’s name. Thought I wasn’t good enough for his son. He used the excuse of me being a bad mother. His name was … is Jeremiah. He owns the fancy-schmancy restaurant on High Past Drive, the Doral. You ever eat there? Oh, I forgot you ain’t from around here.”

“He got rich running a restaurant?”

“Runs a restaurant, runs numbers. And he owns a lumber company. Huge.”

“He runs numbers, I didn’t think that was a thing anymore.”


When he didn’t answer she walked out of the stall. “What you looking at?”

“The crack in the ceiling. I didn’t notice it before.”


“Yeah. And it runs from the fake air vent, if I can get up there, maybe I can punch a hole in it. Or pull the vent out.”

“It’s too high. Ain’t it?”

“Maybe I can balance myself atop of the stall and reach it.

He stepped onto the toilet and then climbed up the side of the stall.

“Take your shoes off, you can balance better and use your toes like claws. Well, you can,” she said when he looked at her. “Kick your shoes off.”

“Untie them for me.”

He kicked his shoes off and stretch as far as he could. “I can’t reach the covering, it’s too far away.”

“Well can’t you jump for it or somethin’?”

“No. I want to be able to walk after I get it off. Besides pulling the cover off is not going to help much. I need to be able to punch a hole and get onto the roof.” He slipped down off the stall wall.

Maryann sat down beside her bag, combing through the maze of items scattered on the floor. “What we going do now?”

Jalen tied his shoes and stared at the door. “I don’t know.”
He walked to the door and opened it. “Lock the door behind me.”

MaryAnn jumped up. “No!”

to be continued…

Author Notes

4 Comments for “Trapped – part 2”

Raymond Tobaygo


Good morning, Charles

Excellent continuation! The dialogue and interaction between Jalen and Maryann were spot on. You’ve taken a gas station rest room and transformed it into a life or death situation, yet with bits of humor. You made me feel like I was in the room as an observer. Enjoyed and looking forward to the next post.

Some nits:
“They can’t get in.(“)

(“)About a year ago,

And named her Sunni; with an “i” she mentioned. Hat to pause — is this dialogue?


boy ain’t ya(.) (?)”


of the stall and reach it.(“)

Take care and stay safe,


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