'No' she says. He pushes her to the bushes. She scrambles into the darkness. She's running away.
“I'm running” she says to herself. Her teeth are tight.
“I'm running…” The car’s about 4 km’s back. He’s folded against the windscreen. He’s wishing. Wishing... He can feel it draining out of him slowly.
Her shirt catches on the needle-like natives, she’s
not running anymore, it's getting damp. As the light leaves the bush-land it looks like a blanket coming in from the sky. She steps carefully, trying to remember where the road is.
He's wearing a look of surprise when they find him. The men in blue run the usual checks. The special services task force will be out here looking until tomorrow night but the shire area stretches into wilderness both sides. ‘Cosy’, the locals call it. And it's such a small town in the wilderness…
‘A Death trap' -The SES Regional Services-.
The SES take themselves seriously out here, managing somehow to muster respectability in spite of bright orange jumpsuits.
She's sits for two days. She can tell by the sky. Her cold legs are numb and there’s a bump on her head. (She’d expected that). Expected that? Not really at all what she imagined and he squirms around on her mind.
She doesn't look for him. She doesn't want to.
There is remorse right down to her young toes, she has to massage them every couple of hours. There is remorse too, in the tight feeling in her head. She sucks leaves. The daylight dies again.
The SES didn't take as long as expected to find a clue. The clue was her. She wasn't expecting that. They hadn’t expected to find anyone alive. All of a sudden out of the wall of trees walked a person. She couldn’t believe her eyes. They take her from the bushland and there really isn’t much talking.
The investigation carries on for a few weeks, they keep her in a psych. ward. In the end not all of the details are clear. There’s a few things about that night they can't clean up and they're all looking at her.
She bares her teeth.
He can see something but it's just the light reflecting off solid metal. He doesn't move.
It was a bad idea, a mad time. Mad, bad pain follows.
“Didn't really love the bitch” he mouths. (He bets they all say that). Bet. Hedge bets.
Better than ever if I get out of here…
They've found the car and found him dead. They never found the other man. The one that got away. Odds are the investigation never even knew there was another man. Who am I to say?
Open an old wound? Say nothing
She talks in her sleep in the psych ward.
She says “enubba, reto and incubububbua ad” but no one understands. Perhaps it wasn't meant to mean a thing.
One day, all by herself, she gets a good solid grip on the walls. She makes sounds like an animal and she speaks to the other man present in the room, the nurse.
“Away! Away!” She says. Then she starts to tell a story…
A tall tale about a night in the bush-land. She can feel the words spilling out of her mouth in no particular order, like most things. All of a sudden she feels better.
Away, away is where they take her.
She causes a riot on the inside.The try to keep her contained, further into the bowels of the building but her chanting incites the other inmates and they transfer her to an isolation wing.
“Away away” she says, in place of a greeting to a cell-mate.
“Never gonna step on a full beer are ya love?” She mumbles without eye contact. “And I won’t throw one at you…”
She moves into the corner.
“No” she says softly shaking her head. “He’s not the dead one, he’s not the dead one… I remember...” She shivers, she massages her thin legs.
They never found him. They never will. He pushes around in her mind.