A loud rumbling was around them, like a huge earthquake. She thought she could hear alarms go off somewhere around her, but wasn't sure. The elevator's lights went out, and she could feel that whatever was holding the thing up let go, as a snapping sound was heard and they crashed down a couple of feet, causing everyone to fall on top of each other, screaming, hanging onto anything for dear life.
Quinn fell down as well and in her panic didn't even think about putting up her arms to break her fall. She was in shock, didn't know what was happening. She didn't even notice two slender arms slid around her waist and pulled her on top of someone, effectively breaking her fall and hugging onto her as everything around them kept shaking.
And then, as suddenly as it had begun, it stopped.
The shaking subsided and all that could be heard now was the heavy breathing of the people around her. Quinn looked around to see the dark-haired girl looking around her, obviously startled as well.
She saved me… And she's still hugging me… Oh wait, I'm actually hugging her back as well. She thought, as she noticed that her own arms had found away around the shorter girl that was cradling her. What the hell happened?
"What the hell happened here?" She heard someone yell. It was the business guy, he had crawled up already and used his phone to light up the other's faces.
Other people started getting up as well, stumbling over each other, and they all started talking… at the same time. Quinn and the girl got up as well, the blonde accepting the brunette's help before she herself looked around her to take in the damage done.
The elevator, for as far as she could see in the dim light of the guy's phone, was a wreck. Some of the metal panels had moved, the floor wasn't exactly straight anymore, and the ceiling looked like it was barely holding up anymore.
She looked around her some more, and saw that some people weren't getting up. One of them was yelling at her friend, but Quinn couldn't really catch it due to the noise other people were making. The older couple's man was beating at the door, apparently thinking that that would get the elevator to work again, at the same time ignoring his… wife?, who was also screaming some panicked things at her husband.
Quinn leaned back against the crooked wall and rubbed her temples. She felt like crying, she thought she had a migraine coming up just because of the noise those people were making, she didn't know how the hell she would get out of there and Britt and Rach should be worried sick right now. God, if only I could call them or something, she thought, before she mentally slapped herself. This was the freaking 21st century, everyone had a phone, including her, and NOW she thought about this.
She quickly took her phone out of her pocket and started calling Rachel, knowing she would be the most likely person to pick up.
No signal? You have got to be kidding me!
She was apparently not the only person to think that, because at the same time, obnoxious business dude started shouting as well.
"This can't be serious! I was in an important conference call, and now I can't even contact my secretary to postpone my meetings. What the hell-"
He had apparently intended to go on with his rant, joined by the others who were crying and screaming even more loudly, as if that was the way to save everyone, when someone suddenly shouted over the rest of the group.
"ALL OF YOU, BE QUIET!"
The group's noise died down as they looked at the small Latina, that had pushed her hood aside as she spoke up. They looked at her in surprise, some with tears in their eyes, some-
"I'm sorry, little girl, but maybe you didn't exactly notice the situation we're in here." Obnoxious business guy, of course. "Be quiet while the grown-ups try and think of a way out of here, okay?"
The girl's expression remained calm at his words, and she tilted her head up confidently as she answered.
"No, I believe it would be better if you were quiet here sir." She had said it so calmly and seriously that the man looked perplexed. "The 'grown-ups', as you call yourself, a lot like everyone else in this place, have not been thinking at all, otherwise we would have been out of here already."
She stepped a bit more to the middle of the elevator and raised her voice a bit.
"Listen up everyone, here's what we're gonna do now. First of all, does anyone of you have a signal on their phone?"
Everyone started talking at the same time again. "No, not at all, I've tried calling anyone, but-", "No, oh my god, I like tried a lot but no one-", "I think I said earlier that I don't-", "No, we're never getting out of here-"
"STOP! Let's try it differently. Everybody stop blabbering and breathe… Okay, now, if you have a signal, raise your hand, otherwise just nod no. No talking, please!"
Quinn nodded that she couldn't reach anyone either, and looked around to see the others do the exact same thing. The tension had gone down a little bit already, even though she could still see a panicked expression in a lot of eyes.
"Okay then, that's too bad. Check your phones every once in a while. You should make a message already, saying that there are-" She counted "- 11 people still stuck in an elevator in the basement of the mall. Prepare that message now, so that when you have a signal for even only one second, you can at least send an SOS."
She looked around her sternly, her arms crossed, waiting until everyone had done what she had said. This time, no one gave some kind of response. The business man waited the longest, but even he realized that this was the best thing to do.
Quinn quickly pulled out her phone an prepared the message as well. She felt like crying as she saw the picture of her two friends as background, but she decided she shouldn't – the last thing the Latina needed right now was another crier.
When everyone had finished typing, they looked up at the girl expectantly, waiting for what they should do now. The girl started talking again.
"Okay, now that that's settled, who here has gotten hurt by the crash?"
The two that were still on the floor lifted there hands right away, and some others with apparently only minor injuries did so as well. All in all, 5 out of 11 people seemed to be hurt.
Quinn checked herself as well, but couldn't find anything wrong with herself. I should thank that girl later. She really saved me just now.
"Alright, you three-" she pointed at Quinn and two other girls who were unharmed, "you will take care of them. Take some clothes to use as bandages. It's hot as hell in here anyways."
She took off her own sweater as an example and threw it at Quinn, leaving her in a long-sleeved plaid shirt.
Quinn caught it and resisted the urge to smell the sweater. Hold it tiger, no sniffing a stranger's clothes, no matter how extremely beautiful said person is. I mean, seriously, her body should be illegal. She focused again as she saw some others take off clothes as well and went over to the wounded people with the other two girls.
"You two then", the girl said to the businessman and the older couple guy, "you'll help me try and open this thing up."
The business guy, who had looked anxiously at the others, apparently debating on whether he should give up his fancy vest or not, was pleased when she called him, hoping he wouldn't lose his expensive clothing this way. He rushed over to the girl's side, and reached out his hand.
"Frank Monroe, CEO of State of Mind Empire." He shook the other man's hand as well.
"Nice to meet you sir, I'm Bill Willis, and that one over there is my wife, Mary. She's hurt her arm."
The Latina rolled her eyes at the completely useless information. Frank then turned to her.
"And you are…?"
The Latina answered reluctantly, and noticed that the blonde girl she had caught earlier looked back at them, waiting for her answer.
"Santana", she answered, more to the other girl than to the two men in front of her. "Shall we get started now then?"
"Yeah, yeah sure, but… How exactly do you plan to do this?", Bill asked.
"If I may suggest something," Frank. "I think we should try going through the ceiling, that would probably be the most… sensible thing to do, and I've seen it done in movies and everything."
"Well," Santana answered to this, visibly annoyed, "I sincerely doubt that will be the most… sensible thing to do, Frank, because if you look up, you can see that the ceiling is bending over because of the weight it has to carry, meaning most likely that something has come down on top of the elevator. Trying to do anything to the ceiling would probably cause the ceiling to crash completely, and kill us all."
Frank looked up at her words, and started rubbing his hands nervously.
"Right, okay then. So ehm… what do you suggest, Santana?"
"We'll open the door.", she said, as if it was the simplest thing to do.
"I tried that earlier," Bill shoots in, "it didn't budge."
Santana rolled her eyes. "No, Bill, you knocked on the door and then expected it to slide open in some kind of magical way."
Bill looked as self-conscious as Frank by now. "So, how-"
"Try and find something we can use as a lever. We'll shove it in between the doors and try to push it open. The other two will grab the doors the moment we get them to open just a little bit, and then try to open them up completely."
"Right, yeah", "okay yes, we can do that, but… What will we use as lever?"
Santana looked around her at that. She didn't really know. Could she use some kind of piece of the elevator itself? Quinn saw her looking around and finished up the wound on the older woman's arm as she saw something that might help. She stood up and went to tap Santana, who was now intently looking at the railing on the other wall.
"Hey", Quinn said, as Santana turned around. "How about this?" She showed her the large umbrella with the steel tip.
Santana looked at her and smiled. A gorgeous smile, Quinn though as she smiled back. "Thanks, that would be great! How did you know-"
"Oh, yeah, I was kinda following your conversation, sorry. I figured you could use some – actual – help." At that she looked at the two men, who were dumbly staring at the door now.
"Yeah, thanks a lot. So…What's your name?", Santana asked, as she looked into the blonde's eyes. Even in the little light that came from their phones, she could still see that the blonde had gorgeous brown-ish eyes.
"Quinn, I'm Quinn." The blonde smiled as she locked eyes with Santana, getting lost in her dark brown eyes.
They kept staring at each other, until Santana decided to break their trance.
"So, I should, ehm… The umbrella." Santana mumbled as she looked away.
"Yeah, and I, erh… The wounded you know." Quinn mumbled back, and she looked at the girl again to hand her the umbrella. The Latina tried to take it without watching, and grabbed Quinn's hand as she did. A shot of electricity went through them, and they looked at each other again, holding their breath.
Santana quickly blinked twice as she turned around and hurried to the door. Quinn kept staring at her a bit longer, but went back to helping the wounded as well, glancing at the brunette as she worked.
What the hell was that?
Santana directed her attention to the two guys again, trying to forget what had happened between her and the beautiful blonde.
"Okay, two of us have to pull, one has to push the umbrella in between the doors. Who will-"
"I'll do the umbrella!", Frank almost shouted, apparently not too eager to put in a lot of force trying to get the doors to open.
Santana rolled her eyes at this, but she didn't see any reason to disagree.
It's probably best if he only does the umbrella part. This guy looks like he can't even open a freaking pickle jar. I just have to be careful with my hand, it seriously hurts like hell. Should I force him to- Ah, no, never mind, my hand's probably not that bad anyways.
She put herself in place next to the left door, as Bill positioned himself at the right. Frank started pushing at the tiny gap in between the two, trying to shove the tip of the umbrella in between. When he finally got the tip in, he pushed in further, so that the umbrella wouldn't just simply break when he tried to open the doors a bit more.
When it was finally in far enough, he started levering it to the left side, enlarging the gap. When it was big enough for Santana and Bill to put their fingers in, he kept it steady while the two of them tried to get a good grip on the doors.
"Okay Bill, on my count. 3 – 2 – 1 – PULL!"
The two of them pulled like crazy, the doors started sliding just a little bit at first, not even inches at a time, until at some point the doors suddenly gave way and slid open completely, throwing both of them against the wall.
Santana winced at the pain her hand and her back caused her, and started coughing as dust greeted the group.
When the dust cleared, Santana and Bill got up, as did everyone else, to look at what had before been the basement of the mall. What they saw there now, was not the sight they had left less than an hour earlier…