Cleo woke to the headlights rolling across the doorway as a car pulled off 66. She roused herself, stretched her sore back.

A man climbed out of the car and came toward her, keys jingling. He wore  khaki coveralls and a cap emblazoned with the Texaco star.

“We’re not open yet,” he said cheerfully. “You by yourself?”

She nodded. “Hitching west. Started in Chicago. Oak Park, actually.”

He unlocked the door and held it. “Well, come on in. I gotta make coffee anyway.”

She went in. He followed.

“Gotta admit I’m a little jealous,” he said, locking the door behind him.


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  1. Lynn Love

    So smoothly and confidently written – not a word out of place. Do you know what happens next, because your readers are assuming something truly awful. I’m a bit more open minded … :)

  2. Maddie's Mama

    I sincerely hope he’s locking the door because he’s technically not open and not because he’s a grungy perv. Either way, this was a great story and very well written.

  3. Isadora De La Vega

    A great deal of visuals appeared as I read this. I felt like she didn’t notice how menacing he was; especially since he asked “Are you alone?” YIKES … curious about what happens next. Great write ….

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