Dawn Run

Dawn Run

Just run.

My feet pound on the path, invisible in the pre-dawn darkness. Monotonous rhythm drowning out the anxiety and images: bank balance, angry texts, landlord letters.

Don’t run. Running burns calories, which means more food, which takes money. Every step is costing you. Just stop.

Just run.

I stop a minute. Heart hammers, breath tastes bloody in the cold air.

Someone is coming. A woman appears under a streetlamp up ahead, running this way. She looks athletic, slim.

Well off.

Time slows. My mind races. She must have a watch or a phone on her. Maybe a wallet. She might even just give them freely to a big guy like me, alone on this dark running path. Five minutes from now and I can breathe easy for a bit. Food, room, heat.

Don’t be stupid. You’re not a thief.

I’m not homeless either. Yet.

You’re not a thief.

She comes on, not slowing.

Just run.

Block the path. Look threatening.

My body is frozen, torn in two directions.

The woman approaches, slows. “Are you okay?” She points to my hoodie. “You should zip up your jacket. It’s pretty cold out here.”

I just look her, still frozen.

She smiles. “Do it for me,” she says. “Pretend I’m your mom.”

She starts to run past.

Grab her.

Pretend she’s your mom.

She disappears into the darkness. I zip up my hoodie and continue walking. It is cold out.

You could be worry-free by now.

You’re not a thief.

I’m not a thief. I’m not a criminal. I’m a nice guy. I’m just desperate. I’ll figure something out. Somehow.

The cold starts to seep through the hoodie and I break into a jog.

Just run.

5 Comments Add yours

  1. This is great, well done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Mason. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow David, you showed what extreme fear can do to a person. The acronym being: false evidence appearing real. Love the reasoning…her paranoia being talked off the ledge by her more rational self. I agree with Mason…well done!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Glad you liked it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I liked a lot.


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