It was December 2nd, and I was struggling down a snowy slope in my heavy boots when I should have been at home watching television. December 2nd, and I should've been online buying gifts for friends and family, but instead I was running for my life in a deserted ski resort in the middle of nowhere. December 2nd was the day I joined the hundreds of others whose pictures were plastered on police walls with the words "Missing Person" stamped beneath them.
I had noticed the three guys trailing me almost an hour earlier. It had been a bad decision to come to the mountain all alone, but the only dangers I had really considered before picking out my little vacation were the possibilities of bears and maybe frostbite. Never would I have suspected to be the target of possible gang violence, especially, as I mentioned before, in the middle of nowhere. But fifteen minutes after I first spotted the men, they were still behind me, and that was when I began to panic.
All of this trouble started about a week ago when my TV broke, and if I were any less sane, I would blame everything on that devilish device. I'm not a very active person, and there isn't an adventurous bone in my body, so when my wide screen practically blew up in my face, I was devastated. I handled the first few days remotely well, spending more time reading and eating out with friends. But then I began to get restless. Restlessness turned into a dull sleepiness, and after I slept I was just bored. Bored people do stupid things.
I concluded that I needed a good vacation, so I took time off work and decided that the mountains near where I lived seemed like a good choice. Not much driving, therefore little gas money, and seclusion from nosy neighbors, of which I was in abundance. I sent my TV off to be worked on while I was gone, and everything from then on ran smoothly. I had made it to my cabin just that morning. It had seemed like a good day for skiing, though I'd never skied before in my life so I really wouldn't know. The rest is easily pieced together. I had abandoned the ski gear a ways back in favor of my life.
By now my lungs were burning in the chilly winter air, and my eyes were leaking frigid tears. I was sure I was going to die. Wrapping my scarf around me tighter, I ran across another snowy dune, the white deepening as I reached the top, causing my steps to be heavy and clumsy. The strangers were close behind, not seeming even a bit tired by the chase that had been going on for at least a mile and a half.
I lost my balance and rolled down the rest of the way, my back smashing into a sharp, cold surface. I was momentarily stunned, but adrenaline gave me the strength to stand again. I wrenched my eyes open. New drifts were beginning to fall, but it was easy to tell that I was standing on the edge of a frozen pond. Fear welled up inside me ten times more potent than before. I was trapped.
I swerved around. My pursuers had reached the top of the hill and were already on there way down. I heard a whimper escape my lips but didn't even credit it to myself. It sounded too scared. I had to be brave. Slipping a bit, I began to trek across the lake, careful not to slide on the sharp ice. They were momentarily slowed as they hesitated and I got a few more steps ahead of them, but their apprehension didn't last long. Soon they were trampling across the ice as if it were a sidewalk. My foot slipped and my knee caught the ice as a small cry escaped my lips. A sharp pain throbbed there, but I knew I couldn't stop. Strings of my hair clung to the cold sweat on my face.
"Slow down, girlie, you're only making this harder on yourself," one of them called. If they thought that was going to stop me, they were dead wrong. It only arose a new bout of terror that sent me scrambling farther and faster despite my wounded knee and draining energy. It was only a moment later, despite my efforts, that I felt sharp, thick fingers around my shoulders. They jerked me backwards. I was sure that they were claws as they dug through the thick lining of my coat. My eyes were so full of tears that I couldn't see, but I wasn't done fighting. I fitfully threw my legs around aimlessly, knowing that my mere 110-pound frame was no match for these monsters. I felt hot breath on my face, and before I knew it, I was on the ground, all air expelled from my lungs from the force, but my attacker was gone.
I sat up anxiously and spotted him a few feet away crumpled on the ground, blood turning pink on the ice. A bullet was lodged in his forehead, though I'd recalled hearing no gunshot. I spun around only to find the second man also spread out on the ice, two holes in his back. Standing above him was the third man, revolver in hand and bandanna pulled up over his face.
"Oh God," I heard him mumble, and he peeled his makeshift-mask slowly, revealing troubled, thin lips and an aged, but beautiful, face. "Oh God, what am I gonna do?"
It was about then that I fainted out of exhaustion, the barren trees of December 2nd swirling around me.
A/N: Mmm...short, I know.