Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Current Affairs (06/07/12)
- TITLE: Cornered by Love
By Lillian Rhoades
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Like a movie in freeze-frame, action grinds to a halt at the silent request of the red lights. Action begins again when cued by the green lights as the mass of young and old of every shape, size and color swiftly cross over to the other side, passing each other in silence, their destiny a secret.
On the corner, timing is everything. And for the cast of characters who cross the wide lane, the five corners provide daily drama that could never be duplicated by the best of movie producers. Either you beat the mass of steel on wheels that stand ready to mow you down should you get in the way, or you wait. While they wait, some stare at the person next to them, others glance up periodically at the light, with time measured in glances rather than minutes. Some arrive just as the light turns green, others arrive just as the light is about to turn red.
Today, Denny, and Carrie cross the busy intersection just as the green light begins to blink; one going east on Fifth and Main and the other going west. Denny was late for a doctor’s appointment and Carrie had ten minutes to get to her first job interview. Both make less than a split second decision. As they pass each other on the run, Denny waves.
He beats the light, but Carrie doesn’t.
Just as he reaches the curb, he hears the blaring of horns and turns to see Carrie’s lone figure frozen in fear, caught like a trapped deer with no place to run with cars on either side.
Like any red-blooded young man who sees a young damsel in distress, especially one who smiled at him as they both tried to outrun the light, Denny’s doctor’s appointment takes second place.
One could only measure his response in nanoseconds. With a death defying to help a damsel in distress, Denny sprints towards Carrie while impatient peddle pushers continue to lay heavy on the horn.
Dodging danger, Denny reaches Carrie, grabs her by the waist and pulls her close to him. Immediately the horns stop as drivers stare at the unfolding drama through their windshields. With his right arm, Denny holds tightly on to Carrie’s waist, lifts his left arm towards traffic, and then looks down at her frightened, shocked face.
“Hey, pretty girl, looks like you’re in trouble. Let’s go.”
Twenty –five years have gone by and every anniversary of their meeting in the middle of the road, Carrie and Denny return to Fifth and Main.
This time they wait until the green light is just about ready to change, and then scurry over together. As soon as their feet touch the curb, Denny grabs Carrie by the waist, tilts her face towards him, and smiles down at her.
“Hey pretty wife, looks like we made it. Let’s go for lunch.”
The cornerstones at the intersection of Fifth and Main could easily be spotted.
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