Waking up hot with sweat soaking through every stitch of clothing she had on, and hearing someone’s radio blaring some type of summer rock music, wasn’t the way Genevieve was expecting to spend her lunch break. Surveying her surroundings while sitting in her all black interior 2016 Jeep Wrangler still at a stand still on highway 90. Traffic had been stopped in both directions. There were vehicles now parked with the occupants standing out talking to each other. One conversation which Genevieve could over hear, was someone saying the traffic was stopped due to a wreck blocking the exit at highway 24. Something about a semi crossing the middle barrier and flipping causing the load of chemicals it was carrying to spill out all over both sides of the road. Traffic would be held up until the spill was cleaned up.
Genevieve looked at the clock on the radio and it read 1:15 pm. She swore under her breath. She was supposed to be back to work by noon. She reached her left hand up to push her long thick raven colored hair off her sweat soaked brow. She did a quick check in the mirror and noticed she now had a temporary red indent from her head resting on the steering wheel just above her deep emerald green eyes. It didn’t look too noticeable with her deep olive complexion.
Genevieve reached into her center console and picked up her phone. She was going to call her friend Chastity at the boutique to let her know she was still stuck in traffic and it didn’t look like she would be back anytime soon. However, when she picked up her phone the screen was black with a heat warning. Apparently it had been sitting in the heat too long and turned itself off to keep from overheating.
Genevieve decided she would step out of her jeep to stretch her legs for a moment. She reached over and grabbed the handle on the door to open it. It was hot to the touch. After opening the door Genevieve stepped down with her petite feet wearing coral colored light weight cotton tennis shoes. Her slender legs looked long in the coral colored ruffle skirt that stopped around the middle of her thigh. Her white camisole type top was fitting and showed off her slender waist. After stepping completely out of her jeep, Genevieve put her arms above her head and clasped her hands together to stretch out her petite 5 foot 4 frame. She then pulled her legs up behind her with her hands one at a time to stretch her legs.
The sun was beaming down with a relentless July heat that felt like it would burn any fair skinned person in just a few minutes. Along with the extreme heat the air felt thick with all the moisture in the air from the surrounding swamp lands and waterways. Genevieve must have spent too much time in the direct sunlight because as soon as she finished stretching she suddenly got a huge wave of dizziness. She turned towards her jeep and just as she reached for the door handle her vision started to fade in and out. It was too late, Genevieve fell forward hitting her head on the door as she fell to the ground with a small thud.
Genevieve was lying on the ground when she opened her eyes. It was dark and she didn’t hear anything around her. The only light was from the moon shining from over head. She pushed herself up to a sitting position so she could get a better look of her surroundings in the dark. Her head was pounding where she hit it on the jeep. She reached up to feel her left temple to assess how bad it was. She lightly touched her fingers to her temple where she was certain she had made impact. There wasn’t even a bump.
Looking around the road where she was sitting Genevieve gasped when she realized her jeep along with all the other vehicles that were there before she passed out was gone! She looked around frantically as she started to stand. She was now on an unfamiliar road with oak and cypress trees on either side. She listened for any sounds. Usually after dark in the midsummer nights this far south in Louisiana there would be all kinds of sounds. Frogs, woodland critters, bugs, and even those huge bloodsucking mosquitoes should be all around. Nothing! Not even a cricket could be heard!
Genevieve asked herself out loud, “Where the hell am I at? Where’s my jeep? How did I get here? Am I dead? Did I die?! No! This can’t be right. If I was dead I wouldn’t have a headache.”
She started to think maybe she was dreaming. Of course! That’s it! I’m dreaming. I’ll just pinch myself and wake up. She closed her eyes and reached over to her left arm with her right and pinched her wrist. Ironically it hurt and felt similar to a needle poke. Must have used too much force to pinch her wrist. She felt it but when she opened her eyes it was still dark around her but now instead of being on the unfamiliar road she was now standing in what seemed to be an abandoned building. She asked herself, “What is happening?! What’s going on with me?! Why can’t I wake up from this nightmare?!”