The hat I wore protected me from the sun’s glare, but after a while I noticed the glare was gone. Looking up, I saw dark clouds hovering in the sky, obliterating the sun.
“You’ve got to be kidding!” I said right out loud. “Rainy season?” Somewhere in the back of my mind I knew something about different places having rainy seasons. Come to think of it, I remembered yesterday at about this time, the torrent hitting our bus as we sped down the highway. I looked around in search of shelter, but saw none. I was surrounded on both sides by those odd-shaped inverted walls I’d seen earlier. Maybe if I made it to an intersection I could get out of this roofless tunnel before the rain started. I walked as fast as I could without actually running. For a moment I thought I saw something—a vehicle behind me; some movement from the periphery— no, out of the question, I couldn’t get in a car with strangers. Anyway, after nothing passed, I turned to find the street empty, quiet. Must be shadows in the storm, playing tricks.
Twenty minutes later and still no intersection in sight, the sky opened. I was running, but it didn’t matter. In minutes I was soaked. I stopped running, stopped walking fast, but trudged onward. It wasn’t cold, after all, and the wetness was somewhat refreshing. Except the part about my clothes clinging to my body.
I looked up, a small silent vehicle was driving slowly next to me. A sun-darkened old man with a stubbly white beard leaned over and was shouting at me through an open window.
“What th-the-galldarn do y- y-you th-th-think yer doin? Climb in here.”
“C-c-come on. Are you deaf?”
Now I was offended. I noticed a small boy in the backseat, holding a puppy. Where hours earlier sweat had run down my face, rain now poured, dripping off my chin. Caution to the wind, I opened the door and got in. In the rearview mirror, I caught it, right before we sped forward—the phantom vehicle I thought I had seen earlier.
S.Smith is the author of the awesome and award-winning middle grade series, Seed Savers. Visit her Facebook and Pinterest pages. Sign up for the newsletter!