Exit: The Tool Box

ExitAs the sun crept up beyond the trees, Richard woke up.  His need for food was great, as the events of the previous night had taken quite a tole on him.

Richard wandered the short distance from his room to the kitchen.  He found David munching peacefully on a plain bran muffin.

Richard decided to take the cue he had subliminally been given and acquire his own muffin.  Sitting at the simple wooden table across from David, Richard began to eat.

Not a word was mentioned about the night before.  Both men knew better than to depress each other by mentioning the shortcomings of the other.  As book-smart as Richard was, David knew from years of experience, living under one roof together as children that Richard had anxious insecurities and would bemoan for months, possibly years, the fact that David saw such things as he had last night.  In their younger years, David would have capitalized on this apparent weakness of Richard’s for his own humorous gain, often bringing up similar sensitive events in public, especially in front of people he enjoyed.  Today they were older.  This was not high school, there was nobody to tell even if he wanted to be immature about such an issue.

They continued to eat their breakfast in silence.

Finally, Richard broke the tranquility.

“So, what is the plan for the day?”

“This is the first time I’ve been up here this season.  This means day one is a lot of maintenance on this here abode.” David replied casually.  “Hope you don’t mind grunt work.”

Richard enjoyed manual labour as much as the next guy.  It was freeing to do something useful away from a computer screen from time to time.

“That sounds excellent!  How can I help you?”  Richard inquired.

“We need to go up on the roof and take a look at the shingles to make sure .  I think it will last another year before I need to replace them, but I want to know for sure.  We also need to tighten the supporting beams around this place so that the roof doesn’t collapse in on us.”

“That seems reasonable,” quipped Richard.

“I’m going to go outside to the shed to get the long extension ladder.  Would you be so kind as to find something for me Richard?  Somewhere under your bed is my large tool box.  Could you bring it outside for me once you find it?” David asked.

“Sure thing, brother,” said Richard.  He bounded off to get the required tools.  David sauntered outside in search of the step ladder.  He figured it would be in the same place he left it last, but you never know if things will stay as you left them through the winter, what with all the wild life that inhabited this small part of the world.

Richard entered his room.  Turning on the one naked light he dropped to all fours and crawled under his bed searching around in the dimness.  Finally his fingers felt a cold metal handle.

Richard began to scoot backward so as to get out from under the bed dragging the rather large tool box along with him.

Once in the slightly brighter light, Richard worked the latches in order to open the box.  It would be a shame to lug something this large for any distance only to have to bring it back.

Richard opened the tool box.  He saw the plethora of tools available to him for a brief moment.  Suddenly, the one light in the room was snuffed out.   Richard was enveloped in a much brighter green light.  He felt strange and weightless as this happened.  He didn’t have any idea what was happening to him inside this rectangular vessel of light.  His only thought was that this was easily the most interesting thing that had happened to him today.

Richard was making an earth exit. He was completely unaware of this fact.  Waves of green light began to wash over him, pulsating faster and faster.

Then, utter darkness.

Richard was still able to breathe this entire time, and that was a good thing because as suddenly as the light and appeared around him he found himself immersed in water.  The pressure on his body was massive.  Richard knew he would have to swim to the surface or he would most likely die.  Not wanting that to happen, if he could help it, Richard instinctively continued swimming in the direction he was going.

Whatever way that was he did not know for certain, at this point Richard was going to try anything to break the surface and find fresh air.

The young man kept swimming. Not knowing what to expect he hoped for a miracle.

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