07
May
10

The Game #7

The three remaining players fixed their eyes on the back of the seventh empty room.  Through the opening walked two of Darius’ men on either side of a plump woman in a tight red jogging suit.  Craig Leeson’s head slumped down to his chest at the sight of his wife Melanie.  He shuffled to the glass, shoulders slumped forward in despair.

“Hey Mel, how you holding up?” Craig asked his wife.

“Oh, I’m just peachy!” Melanie said in a strong Brooklyn accent.  “There’s nothing I enjoy more than being dragged out of my house by two big mooks, stuffed into a truck and shoved into an over sized fishbowl.  What the hell is goin’ on, Craig?  Do you owe somebody money?  I swear to God, if this is your fault, I will make sure Howie pounds the crap out of your miserable hide.”

“No, Mel, I didn’t have anything to do with this”, Craig said.  “I’m just glad to see you’re ok.”

As Edward tuned out the continued rantings of Melanie Leeson, he realized that there were only two empty rooms left.  He was beginning to sweat, something that rarely happened to him.  If his heart rate climbed any higher, he feared he would stroke out.  Nellie “Vision” Overton stood next to Edward; she held onto his arm and watched the second to last door open.  As the three people walked into the room, Edward felt Nellie’s fingers dig into his arm.  She was shaking; in a soft voice she said, “Daddy…”

Robert Overton looked to be in his early forties, but in reality was a few months away from his fifty-fourth birthday.  He stood close to six feet tall with a full head of hair barely graying at the temples.  He was dressed in a white polo shirt and gray slacks.  Robert’s crystal blue eyes flashed across as much of the room as was visible through the glass in front of him.

“Well, Nellie, you’re about the last person I expected to see here”, Robert said.  “Are you well my dear?”

“Daddy….. I’m….I’m ok…how are you?  Are you ok?”  Nellie tried to fight back her tears but they ran down her cheeks unimpeded.

“I’m fine.  I am curious about the reason for my being here, but I feel confident an explanation will be forthcoming.”  Robert clasped his hands behind his back as his escorts exited the room and closed the door.

Nellie continued to hold on to Edward’s arm, but his attention was now on the final empty room.  His intuition had been spot on.  His “incentive” was the last to be revealed.  He could hear his heartbeat ringing in his ears.  It seemed as if it were loud enough for everyone in the room to hear.  Time slowed and he heard the click of the latch on the door at the back of the room.  A line appeared in the wall and began to widen slowly.  Edward watched as if in a trance, his nervous system registering every minor change in the state of the door.  After what felt like hours, it came to a stop.  He stared at the opening as if he were facing his executioner until finally, Darius’ men appeared with the last of the nine prisoners.  Edward felt as if his heartbeat had stopped completely.  He peeled Nellie’s hand from his arm, walked to the glass at the end of the row of rooms and stared inside.

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