Author Topic: Fleming Storage Unit #38: Classic Crumplezones  (Read 1123 times)

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Ave Autumn

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   Metal Scraping against metal is a terrible sound. Oxidization, the effect that time has on objects that sit timelessly. I stowed the old keyring in my pocket, my father had made me pay for his storage unit for a whole year and I wasn’t letting him get anything interesting from it before I did. He was cutting it close, coming up from Colorado the day they were throwing out his junk to the police. One day was simply enough time to get the drop on him.

   I’d be catching the bus back home before he got here; he’d have to call me if he noticed any of this junk missing. He never called me, waited for me to call him, a passive aggressive cold war. It was attrition on my memory of the man. Looking at all his trinkets and trophies rotting, stagnant reminded me he wouldn’t really miss anything. They’d been rattled around and torn through by an unstoppable force known as the Havre City Police Department already. Looked like an earthquake and smelled like old newsprint.

   I implore you to find a more a more eclectic mess than a Garage Sale Hunter’s personal collection. Ancient Tin toys next to 90s work-out fads, Issues of Sports Illustrated roughly stacked with old sarsaparilla bottles as paperweights, an airsoft rifle leaning against a globe embossed with some foreign and unreadable scrawl. Like a Safari room for under-appreciated and abandoned memories. Time was not gracious with some objects: rust covering an antique skillet; posters with wasp ravaged edges; and stained wood sculptures disfigured by moisture, discolored by sunlight, yet disconnected from the styles of today. I only had one bag to take the thing I wanted and only three hours before the got back.

   Digging through knick-knacks; I came to dwell upon there meanings. Barbels, baubles, and fish-bowl reading lenses all had stories I was unaware of. Then I came across an owners manual, for an ‘86 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS. My pop’s first car, my first car, he’d loved it so much he passed the jalopy down to me my last year of high school. I HATED the gift, hard and expensive to maintain as well as generally unimpressive. However, complaining about a free car is practically lunacy from the way I see it.

   It reminded me of the day, I was freed of that malcontent of a motorized vehicle. The night of Halloween just last year, my car, My 1986 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS was battered into a more misshapen lump by a mere mortal man. He had a weapon of course.

   It was a cold night, not stormy but it was a little wet that day. I, having a parentally imposed curfew of 22:00, had just wrapped up hanging out with my friends before they went off to some party of dubious nature. When I got back to the crusty Chevy, I had noticed I left the ajar. Probably forgot about it after retrieving my flip-lighter for Constance Peterson. She’d ran off with it, hollering that she was going to burn down the whole of Beaver Creek Park, and I’d given chase. It wasn’t her fault though; I was the idiot who let my car battery die.

   So I was crouched in a freezing, dank parking lot. I had nothing to do but wait for roadside assistance to come along and give me a jumpstart. You start noticing new things when you have nothing to do. I’d never payed attention to the smell of autumn before. As spores and flakes of leaves get caught on the wind they produce an earthy aroma. It’s the smell of a slow peaceful death, or a crisp gentle rot.

   Seemingly hours pass in the icy embrace of a Halloween Evening, and I start hearing a thunk, like the dull hammering of a mallet. I checked around me for anybody fumbling with their car’s trunk hatch. My hoping that anybody was around with basic car utilities was stopped when I realized the noise was coming from down the hiking trail. Those things are well marked, maintained, and close enough to society to hear screams. I justified it as some night maintenance replacing a worn plaque and relatively safe. Might even make a friend out of some veteran park ranger or cartoon anti-littering mascot.

   With my phone as an impromptu flashlight, and a pocketknife on my keyring if somebody needed some bottle-opening, I ventured down the trail trying to source the persistent beat. Footfalls make lonely company and incoherent mumbling of song lyrics passes time. I’m not a personal fan of long stretches of asphalt, but a wooded canopy in the darkness of night cast strange shadows. Accompanied by a reverberating beat like a hollow heart I saw why stories of ghouls and ghosts exists. The thudding even strokes only got louder as I approached.

   It was awful sight, a man bare-chested strapped with duct-tape to the bark of an ancient oak, his shirt had evidently been used to gag him. He’d had to have endured hours of abuse, covered heel to tip in dark violet bruises. Dark brown covered his neck and chin pooling still red in an alcove that used to be his larynx. His attacker was still there, brandishing a crooked 9-Iron, beating mechanically at broken ribs. My phone’s flash pierced his eyes and as he turned to attention; I felt the device drop from my hand and my legs carry me in the direction of distant parking lot streetlamps.

   Running for your life is not something you think about in the moment, you let adrenaline carry you along your path of least resistance. I’m glad I’d taken the trail, and the rabid clubber wasn’t thinking enough to pull his victim into the cover of the treeline. He’d gotten too excited I suppose. Although I was a bit out of shape even footing and a good sense of where I was going kept me from the reach of the gibbering maniac. Out of breath and terrified I had burst through the trailhead with all the speed of Usain Bolt.

   As I reach my motor vehicle I drove each of the bolt locks into the doors and manually sealed the cracked windows. It stared at me from just outside my car door, it looked like a man but move like a machine or some twisted changeling. *Thud-Thud-Thud* Iron beating against aluminum only echoes in the soundproof car. *Screech-Thud-Thud* the club pulled across siding as he circled around like a predatory bird or fish. *Thud-Thunk* not breaking eye-contact as he pounded from high on the trunk like an artisan at his forge.

   Each blow made the car shake more and more as his swings increased in intensity. I was breathing hard wrapping my sweaty palms around the round hilt of a two-inch long utility blade. Unrelenting he had put his back well into his swings bending his weapon into a cruel crook. He raised high over the back windshield, and with a loud crash, shattered it into a million shards of diamond dust. Orange and Yellow caught on every crystal as the service truck pulled into the space. My assailant was gone in less than the blink of an eye leaving behind a crooked bloody club.

   My dad hated to see that car get totaled; I guess I can understand why. He blamed me for it, I guess, even though I was a victim as much as the car. Since I couldn’t pay the money the insurance company charged us to get rid of the old girl, he made me pay for his storage unit instead. Got so mad at me, about the circumstances, he skipped town to live at grandpa’s old lakehouse.

   None of this junk was mine to begin with, and all of it lacked any redeeming value. However, taking just the interesting stuff, seemed like suitable revenge for being left behind in Havre. By the time I was done reminiscing, a well-loved truck had pulled up. A tall, gruff man stepped out, and was about to open the tailgate, as he spotted me closing the segmented aluminum door. *Screech-Thud-Thud* I’d probably missed my bus, I wasn’t good at keeping track of time or taking calls since I lost my phone.
« Last Edit: 12:48 AM, 12/ 8/17 by Ave Autumn »

Enzo Piazza

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on: 01:05 AM, 12/ 8/17
 8)  Dude


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on: 01:20 PM, 12/ 8/17
Typo patrol! >3<
"...and only three hours before the got back." They?
"...dwell upon there meanings" Their.
"I had noticed I left the ajar." the... door?
"looked like a man but move like" moved

My favorite things:
I agree with the previous commenter! "Dude." Very nice Halloween slasher experience. Love the victim on the tree. Love the narrator's "just drop everything and run".
I also like how you make it clear that this narrator is pretty broke, he hasn't replaced his phone or his car yet, but still his dad is making him pay for this unit. I get that. Good motivations.

My questions:
What things did the narrator decide to take from the storage unit, in the end? What were "just the interesting things"?
Who showed up with a truck at the end? Is that someone from another unit? It seems odd just mentioning it and nothing really happening.

My suggestions:
There's one line where you refer to the assailant as "it" while the rest of the time you call them a "he". That feels weird... Maybe just stick with "he" and describe his other-than-human qualities without the "it"?
Some of your sentences could be divided into a few shorter ones, while there are some fragments that aren't quite sentences. I know that this just goes with the "conversational" tone, but maybe consider cleaning a few of those up a bit for your reader. Or not! =) It's up to you.