Story: Blanketed, A Blizzard Escape
This will be a short story about one winter's adventure of 2 couples who braved a blizzard to escape boredom. This is a work in progress. It has not been edited.
The city was immobilized. This was the worst winter storm in recent history. Twenty-three inches of snow lay on the ground imprisoning the young, impatient newlyweds in their sparsely furnished apartment.
Across town another couple looked outside with determination. The radio was blaring in the background:
"We have interrupted normal programming to cover the ‘Blizzard of '77.’" This is Loudmouth Larry of WBBA FM (W)here (B)lizzards (B)lanket the (A)rea! We are committed to staying on the air until this crisis is past. We have a number of announcements. Just received: a call from a man who is in need of formula for his baby. Volunteers with four-wheel-drive vehicles in the Highland area should call us at WBBA for assignments. The Louisville Police request that everyone remain in their homes unless it is an extreme emergency. There are reports of deserted cars stuck in the snow on almost every street in the city. If you attempt to dig your car out, there is no guarantee there will be a clear path to your destination. Please, only four-wheel-drive vehicles should attempt to maneuver our city streets. Most businesses are closed because workers are stuck in the snow! Have you ever seen anything like this, Herb?" "No, Larry, this is beyond my imagination! Another announcement just in: Louisville Police have decided to close Interstate 264. They ask that no further drivers attempt to use the Interstate. We are told it is at a standstill, and people are stranded in their vehicles. If you are stranded in your car, you are advised to make your way to the nearest phone and report your whereabouts. As more four-wheel-drive vehicles become available, stranded persons will be rescued according to the most need. While you are waiting to be rescued, you are advised to use your car heater sparingly. Your patience and charity has been astounding, Louisville, please, keep it up! This is serious business, folks, please stay home if you can. Just in: a grateful father informed us of a ‘Good Samaritan’ who brought his baby some formula! Thank you Louisville. Your response to your fellow man's needs since this storm has been overwhelming. It's great how this city has pulled together in its time of trouble, don't you think, Larry?” "You're so right, Herb! It warms my heart! And I'm glad something is warm in this city! This is our 18th hour of continuous coverage of this blizzard, and we will not leave until this city is out of danger! This is WBBA FM, staying with you, the radio station (W)here (B)abies (B)ottles (A)re filled!
Click! Jerry turned off the radio. "Listening to that is discouraging! The van is dug out. Do you still want to try?" Sarah nodded her head. "This might be crazy, but I sincerely want to try. What did Willie and Pam say?" "They are all for it. Willie says if we can make it to their house, we can make it anywhere. Hey, if nothing else, this will break our boredom!"
Willie and Pam were packing their one suitcase. "Should I take my bathing suit?" "If you want to, you know I love to see you in it," Willie teased. Pam's glance threw him into the memory of their wedding night, six short months ago. Pam was only 17, but Willie was sure her love was real. This was Willie’s second marriage, but it was first in his heart. Pam's mother didn't much like the fact that there was 5 years difference in their ages, but Willie finally won her over with his abundant charm. "Hey, babe, how long before you think they'll get here?" "In this snow, they may not make it at all. Why?" Pam looked up from her packing just as Willie grabbed her. "What do you say, baby?" "I say you are the most wonderful man in the world." He picked her up and cradled her in his arms. His feelings for her ranged from protective to passionate in one heartbeat. She was light as a feather and tiny as a child in his muscular grasp. Her warm, soft hands around his neck compelled him to lay her on their bed. They made love until there was a knock at the door.
Pam giggled as Sarah and Jerry acknowledged the situation. "You newlyweds are insatiable!" Jerry shook his head. "I hope you guys are ready for this. We got stuck three times coming over here. All three times, people helped push us out. It's great how friendly people are in a blizzard." "Are we crazy to attempt this,” Sarah wondered aloud? “It's frigid out, and you know we don't have a heater in the van." "What do you think, babe," Willie looked questioningly at Pam. "I don't want to take any chances with my new wife." "Oh, it'll be alright. Jerry said people are friendly. If we get stuck and can't go on, somebody will see that we get back home. Anyway, once we get out of Kentucky, the weather will let up." Willie frowned with concern at the thought of Pam being cold and stranded. As if she read his mind, Pam put her arms around his neck and lightly kissed his cheek. "Please, babe, I've never been to Florida, and I'm bored with sitting in this apartment. We have extra blankets and coats, and, we can keep each other warm...." Willie couldn't say no to Pam when she especially desired something, and she really wanted this.
It was mid day when they were finally on their way. The bright sun aided in melting enough of the snow to make the main roads manageable . . . that is if you didn’t stop. Willie was changing his wet socks for the third time as they left the city limits. Each time they had to come to a complete stop, Willie and Jerry had to get out and push the van. Then they raced, slipping and sliding, to catch up and jump back in. Pam was excited and happy. This was the first time they had left their apartment in five days. She was concerned about Willie’s cold, red feet, but she did not regret their decision to go. Willie would endure any discomfort if it made Pam happy.
Everyone was doing his best to keep warm. All faces were wrapped in knitted scarves in order to harness the heat of human breath. The warmest spot in the van rapidly became the coveted seat of honor. The van’s motor was between the driver and passenger seats and was covered with an upholstered wooden box.
“Your time’s up. Who will go next?” “Everyone has had a turn except for Jerry,” Sarah reminded. “Okay, pull over, and I will drive so you can get warm,” Willie obliged. “At least his butt will be warm,” Pam interrupted. They all were too tired and cold to find the humor in that statement.
Willie was getting used to the feel of the van just as a deer ran out onto the highway! Instinctively, Willie slammed on the brakes. The van slid sideways then spun completely out of control. Willie somehow remembered his military training and proceeded to turn into the skid. He let up on the brake and put the van into neutral. His training paid off. The van finally stopped. After the initial shock, Pam and Sarah expressed their relief in missing the deer.
Night is never as black as when snow is covering all. The trees glistened under the street lamps. Every branch was encased in solid ice. Pam imagined they were traveling within a crystal world that was light years away from Earth. She liked to pretend, but was afraid to tell Willie of her games. She could not risk his disapproval again. She would become mature before his eyes, and he would never have to rebuke her again. She was determined to skip age 17 and go directly to age 21.
Character development starts HERE