Entry Ninety-eight: Adam Mahoney, You Just Won!

[This entry is the current story I am working on. This is twenty-eight of who knows how many will be posted. Enjoy it while it lasts...]

Adam stood in front of the sporting goods store, tire iron gripped tightly in his right hand, determined to get in and abscond some new workout clothes but unsure how. He had made his way to The Mall, a local misnomer for what amounted to two strips of store fronts facing each other, divided by a double sidewalk. It was as fancy as they had been able to generate in Grayson. It wasn’t large enough to crush the downtown businesses but it contained all of the stores usually found in fancier malls in bigger cities, so the business community was relatively happy with the arrangement.

Adam had hoped the back door to the store would be accessible, much like the grocery store, but when he checked it he realized it was solid and secured by deadbolts. He wasn’t going to penetrate that with a tire iron. Now, standing in front of the store, he was confronted with walls of glass and his only option was to shatter something and force his way in. He didn’t like the idea of destroying property but the displays of clothes and shoes through the window were motivating him to proceed. He swung the tire iron back over his head and brought it forward against the glass door with minimal force, hoping to do enough damage to gain entrance but not make a mess. The instant the metal bar hit the reinforced door it bounced back with surprising speed, barely missing his face on the rebound. He tried again using a little more energy but the result was the same; the door was intact and the clothes were safe. He took a deep breath, grabbed the tire iron with both hands, assumed the stance of a clean-up hitter and brought the metal bat across his body with full thrust and power, swinging so hard he lifted himself off the ground. The moment of impact was a glorious display of glass shards arcing through the air, showering Adam as he struggled to gain his balance and not fall into the ragged door frame. The combustion was accompanied by its own song, a musical escort, as the store alarm started screaming an awful combination of deep honks and staccato, piercing shrieks which caused Adam to panic. He quickly knocked out the large, remaining chunks of glass in the door frame and pushed his way into the store, frantically looking for the box on the wall that controlled the alarm. He ran to the rear of the store, assuming it would be in the back where the owner would daily enter and exit and he spotted a small, blinking box on the wall by the door. He started pushing buttons randomly, hoping some lucky sequence would stop the cacophony, but nothing worked. The noise was deafening and he was having trouble concentrating, his hands shaking as he tried to miraculously punch in the right combination. Frustrated, he hit the box with the flat of his hand which gave him an idea. He stepped back and swung down hard with the tire iron, smashing the box into several pieces, exposing wires and controls, all dangling from the wall. Yet the alarm was still alive and screaming. He continued to pound on the wall, creating holes all around the target until, finally, one swing met the mark, the metal rod snagging the wires and ripping them from their source. The alarm immediately stopped, the silence of the store pronounced and a relief. Adam sagged to the floor, dropping the tire iron that suddenly felt like it weighed 200 pounds. His hearing was muffled allowing his heart beat to pound clearly in his head, throbbing yet slowing, as he remained still, leaning against the store’s wall. “Damn, that was ridiculous,” he said as he struggled to pull a cigarette and lighter from his shirt pocket. The cigarette helped to calm him and after a second one, for good measure, he stood up and began to shop.

All words and images ©2007/J. Colle

1 comment:

mycotn said...

Insidious and scary... thanks for the reminder... made me think of the lyrics in a tune by David Wilcox called "Little Piece At A Time".