Underground Fear

Clive was walking through an underground tunnel beneath Checker Street. The tunnel always smelled of Chinese Food, it was warm in winter and cool in summertime, and something lucky always happened to him in the tunnel.

This time, he slipped. Maybe it was a patch of cooking oil from a bottle that fell out of a shopping bag and broke. Or maybe it was ice cream that detached from the cone. One second he was walking, and the next he was on his butt. He slipped, but it was lucky.

A girl stopped to help him. A young college type with dark curly hair and thoughtful brown eyes. She extended her hand.

“Are you okay?”

“Yeah, thanks.”

He took her hand. It was warm and soft.

“It could have happened to anybody,” she said.

“Yeah, it never happens to me, I’m usually like Batman.”

She laughed.

Weeks later, when they were on their way to a cafe, he told her that the first time he saw her, she scared him. She reminded him of a woman who was cruel and broke his heart. She promised she would not be cruel to him if he was not cruel to her. He nodded and smiled. They entered the tunnel again, it was warm and bright.

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