In the Cabin - In the Cabin

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In the Cabin
Jim Carnicelli
8/6/2021   |   8/12/2021   |   7/12/2024   |   434

434 words
FNASR offered
Kira Carnicelli
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In the Cabin

by Kira Carnicelli

8/6/2021    8/12/21    434    1:55
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I nestled into my cot in the cabin. Despite blasting the AC, I was sweating. Hopefully I could resist getting up again to check the lock.

A weekend away in the woods sounded peaceful, even if I would be alone the first night. The two hour drive wasn’t bad. Neither was the evening. The cabin was tidy and undisturbed. I cooked my dinner over the fire with no hassles. In fact, I got lucky because it started to storm right after I put out the fire.

The only problem so far was that the key stuck in the lock, requiring extra effort to ensure it latched properly. I reminded myself that I was totally isolated. That even if I left the door wide open, the worst that could happen was the storm or a wild animal getting inside. Neither were ideal, but I could manage them.

Still, I made sure no one could get in before allowing myself into bed. And even knowing they couldn’t, I felt compelled to check every few minutes until I exhausted myself. Comfort eluded me when I could hear the thunder rumbling; the knock of every twig the storm thrust at the cabin. Hard to believe it was just the storm and not a stranger lurking around.

For most of the night, I drifted between sleep and wakefulness, checking for signs of disturbance.

At one point, I dreamt my boyfriend drove over early and joined me on the cot. It wasn’t big enough for two people, not really, but he stretched out on top of me like he did at home when I ignored the alarm clock in the mornings. His warm weight resting along my body was my favorite sensation. Now, it felt so real that I wondered for a moment if I wasn’t dreaming and he’d chosen to surprise me.

But of course, he wouldn’t do that. He knew I hated surprises. Plus, he wouldn’t drive this far in a storm after working a ten hour shift. Nonetheless, the dream made me smile and let me know just how tired I was.

I awoke feeling refreshed and checked my phone. My boyfriend messaged a half hour ago that he was on his way.

I smiled and leaned over to grab some clothes from my suitcase. I could see sunlight streaming in from behind the window drapes. No more storm, thankfully.

As my gaze shifted from the window down to my bag, I caught a glimpse of the floor. I froze.

And stared at the large, muddy boot prints tracking their way to my cot.