Wind howled above Anthony’s head as he pushed the phone to his ear. The phone’s screen warmed Anthony’s cheek. He couldn’t tell if it was static on the other end of the line, or the storm above.
Anthony felt stupid to answer like that, but habit overpowered logic. Snowflakes arced in and out of the tunnel before reaching the ground. The opening of the tunnel was amassing snow, but not fast enough that Anthony thought to worry. The phone’s call ended tone sounded and then a set of vibrations signaled a text.
You have arrived at your destination. To prevent further freezing, dig until you find warmth.
The screen blacked out with a flashing empty battery and then shut off. Anthony leaned against the snow around him and wheezed. Snowflakes flew past like frozen bullets. He was in a squall; the wind was too strong for a standard blizzard. Anthony watched nature’s show and hoped for a bright artificial searchlight to cut through the snowfall. When the pins and needles sensation disappeared, the cut of cold pain set in once more. Anthony thought back to the text, and whether he’d really heard Atlas earlier. I couldn’t find Atlas in this. Even black fur wouldn’t stand out through the blankets falling from the sky. Anthony dug down, hoping the pins and needles would return.
He didn’t know how long he dug, but the snow rose around him while the hole moved ever downward. Each movement sent a tremor down Anthony’s arms. The whistle of the wind muffled the further in Anthony went. After what felt like hours, blood reddened Anthony’s skin again, but black skin covered his fingertips. Only the palms of his hands felt the cuts from the ice and snow.
“Atlas? Are you there?”
There was no reply. Anthony dropped to his knees and looked behind him. A faint light came from the opening ten feet away. The tunnel appeared too perfect a circle to be dug out by a freezing man. A vibration came from his phone. What the hell?
You’re running out of time. Use the light before it’s gone.
The phone died as soon as Anthony read the last word. A rumbled and crack that sounded like rock separating from a mountain. Anthony sprawled forward and kept digging in his tunnel. He dropped the phone in his frenzy and buried it under the flung snow. The ground shook, and the light flickered. Anthony wanted to look back, but focused on the growing hole in front of him.
An orange tip of fabric appeared to Anthony’s right. Anthony focused his efforts in that direction. The flap of fabric grew into a side of a coat. The rumbling of the earth stopped. Anthony pulled at the fabric, and the snow tunnel collapsed behind him. Darkness consumed any remaining light. Unmeasurable amounts of snow fell on Anthony’s feet.
3 thoughts on “Frozen in Line 6: You Have Arrived at Your Destination”
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Very good!! I’m really enjoying this one. Can’t wait to read the next chapter
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