Always With You. Flash Fiction.

Eve looked down at her watch, there was still another twenty minutes left in the presentation and she’d checked out of it a few minutes in. She glanced around the room, going by the yawns and vacant stares she wasn’t the only one that was bored. Over head there was the hum of the projector which created a soothing background drone. Eve twirled her pen in her fingers, soon this bullshit would end and she could get back to work.

The heat was beginning to build, making the room stuffy and stifling, they’d been stuck in here for an hour already. She could feel the antsy energy in the room, people were starting to shuffle papers and put stuff away. The presenter was starting to wind down now and Eve felt a surge of relief as he clicked into his last slide. “OK, I think that about covers it, does anyone have any questions?”
The room stilled, “No? Well, if anyone walks to talk to me after they’re more than welcome.” a light smattering of applause cut across the last few words as people began to stand and leave the room. Eve stood, grabbed her doodle-filled notebook and joined the others in filing out of the room. The crowd shuffled through the doors before branching off, as Eve stepped outside the room she spotted him. Her feet slowed for a second, her heart thudded heavily. She let her eyes move over him without stopping, maybe he hadn’t spotted her, she moved to the left as discretely as she could, trying to stay with the bulk of the crowd. She didn’t look behind herself as she walked, she kept her eyes straight ahead. She couldn’t turn this into a big deal, it would reflect badly on her, she needed to find some building security to take care of it. She picked up the pace a little, trying to put some distance between them, she longed to look back, to make sure he wasn’t following but that would be a dead giveaway. She needed to keep things calm, controlled. Up ahead she spotted the door to the women’s bathroom, perfect, she could hide in there and call the building reception on her cell. She pushed open the door and walked in, sparing a quick look behind herself. There he was, not ten feet back, that familiar vacant smile on his face, his dead eyes boring into her soul. The door closed and broke her eye contact. Eve was trembling, she searched her pockets for her phone before pulling it out with shaking fingers. Eve checked the bathroom and saw it was empty, that meant he knew she was in here and if he came in they’d be all alone. She moved into one of the stalls and locked the door, then she sat down and started looking up the phone number for the building. As she was waiting for the webpage to load she heard the door open and close, the footsteps that followed were heavy and slow. Eve’s mouth dried up, it was hard to breathe, it was him, it had to be him. The footsteps were getting closer until they stopped outside her stall, she looked down and saw a pair of men’s leather shoes. There was a faint rapping on the door. “Are you in there?” there was a light chuckle but it sounded forced, “of course you are, I don’t peg you as someone who’d climb out a window. No, you’re too good for that kind of thing, aren’t you?” he slammed his fist into the door, Eve jumped, a small squeak escaping from her mouth. The webpage loaded and she quickly pressed the number, the phone started ringing. “Do you really think anyone is going to get here before I’m through with you?”
There was another bang on the door. “Just open the door and make it easier for us all, OK? I promise it won’t hurt.”
“Hello Jefferson Build-”
“I’m trapped in the women’s bathroom on the first floor there’s a man in here trying to hurt me send security.”
He banged on the door again, “What are you telling them? All your lies no doubt. Did they tell you security is on their way yet? I like a challenge.”
Eve whimpered, she couldn’t hear what the voice on the phone was saying over the s ound of her own heart, her harsh, gasping breaths. He had found her, how had he found her? there was another bang as the door rattled in its frame, there was a faint cracking sound this time. Eve moaned. The door flew open, slamming into the wall, Eve screamed as he lunged towards her.

When security arrived he was already gone, they found Eve still sitting in the stall, shaking and crying. She had a steadily growing bruise around her eye, there was no sign of the man, he was gone but his words as he’d stood over her would haunt her dreams for years to come, “I will always find you.”

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About Alan James Keogh

I am a 26 year old writer who somehow tricked U.C.D. into giving me not only a degree in English and Classical studies, but an Hons Masters in Creative Writing too. Visit my blog where I post short stories twice a week (Monday and Wednesday) and an installment of a serialised novel on Fridays. I did consider writing this in the third person, as though it was written by someone else, but Alan is not comfortable writing in the third person as it seems kinda creepy and unbalanced so Alan decided it was probably best to write in the first person. He hopes it went well for him.
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