part three – Lost in Spaciousness
Jaye sat at the bar, staring at her drink. It must've been far too early for alcohol, but she was having a bad day, and personally, she didn't care. "Hit me," she said, rather lackluster, slapping her empty glass down on the bar. Eric raised an eyebrow and took her glass.
"No more. You're practically drunk. Its five o'clock and your already drunk."
"Do I look like I care? Now hit me."
"Look, I'll hit you, but I'm not giving you any more to drink," he said, turning back to another customer.
"Oh, c'mon," Jaye said, slurring. "It's not like it's going to kill me."
"Actually, massive alcohol consumption can kill a person. And I don't want you dead just yet. We got back together, what, two days ago? Don't think I'm ready for you to be six feet under.
"Fine. But I have nothing else to do. It's my day off work, I can't go back to my trailer, and my brother's sick and I don't want to help him. Well, I don't care about helping him really, but the flamingoes don't."
"The flamingoes… don't… what…?"
"Want me to help my brother. Aren't you listening to a thing I'm saying? Gosh." Eric just gave Jaye a look. "What?"
"You've had way too much to drink. Get up," he said decisively. Now it was Jaye's turn to give Eric a look. Completely confused, she turned around and stood up. Eric walked over to her, placing a hand around her hip, and dragged her off to the room behind the bar. She slumped over onto the bed.
"Okay, maybe I'm a little bit drunk." He started to take off her shoes and put her feet up on the bed. "What are you doing?"
"You are going to rest. It seems like even when you don't have to do anything, you get stressed. So, you just need a little rest. I'll be back in maybe fifteen minutes, alright?"
"Pfft. I am a-okay," Jaye said, sloppily throwing up an "okay" sign with her hands. Eric kissed her on the forehead and walked out of the room, looking back every couple of steps. As soon as he was out of the room, Jaye closed her eyes and sighed.
Tick-tock, tick-tock, round-the-clock-tick-tock.
Jaye awoke with a start. The restaurant was silent. Light was still coming from it, but it was completely silent. Her head ached. She remembered something about Eric coming to check on her in fifteen minutes. How long had she been there? Less than fifteen minutes? But it was loud when she had fallen asleep, and there was no way that the Barrel had become dead silent in less than fifteen minutes. So it must've been longer. She sat up and looked around. An alarm clock right by the cot was flashing.
"12.53? What?" She sat up slowly and looked around. Her shoes were tucked under the cot. She smiled and said aloud, "Just like Eric." Again, she looked around the room. There was one voice coming from somewhere. Someone was singing this incredibly tedious tune. "Tick-tock, tick-tock, round-the-clock-tick-tock," over and over and over again. It faded in and out constantly, and Jaye had no idea where it was coming from or who was singing it. "Is anyone here?"
"Tick-tock, tick-tock, round-the-clock-tick-tock." The sound of Jaye's voice made the singing louder and steadier. She stood up and shook the dizziness out of her head. "Hello?" she called again. "Who is doing all that singing? It's really annoying." She turned the corner to the bar and saw that it was completely empty. "Alright, this is impossible. Where is everybody?" She looked around. It was completely empty, except for one of those toy monkeys, the kind that had the little cymbals and clanged them. Except this one had something between its cymbals – a little clock. "Tick-tock, tick-tock, round-the-clock-tick-tock," it sang. Before, the song had sounded cheerful, but now seemed gloomy.
"What are you doing?" Jaye hissed at the little monkey in the middle of the floor. It stopped trying to bang its cymbals together and cocked its head at her.
"Mouse," was all it said before resuming the song.
"What?" Jaye laid down on her stomach and propped her head in her hands, looking at the monkey who was still singing its stupid song. Jaye pulled the little clock out from between the monkey's cymbals. It stopped moving and singing. "What did you say before?" Jaye asked it.
"Mouse," it said, and then it seemed to stop being alive. Suddenly, something squeaked behind Jaye and she jumped up, screaming. A little tiny mouse with a note attached to its back started running around between Jaye's legs. The mouse looked up and started sniffing the air near Jaye.
"Alright… this isn't creepy in any way, shape, or form," she said to herself. She bent down to take the note off the mouse's back. It scampered away frantically, and Jaye stood there frozen on the spot. She had just been given a note from a mouse after listening to a cymbal-clanging monkey sing a song about clocks. Granted, this was not the weirdest day ever, but she was beginning to feel like Alice in Wonderland. However, she had a choice. She could either open the note or do absolutely nothing. Years of apathy told her not to do anything, but curiosity was biting at her.
The note was on a napkin that was very crinkled up. The writing had pierced through the paper many times, and the writing was messy. It said the following.
Trained mouse. Men taken us. Please help. Don't know where we're going. They have blindfolds.
The note made very little sense to Jaye. Somebody just happened to have a trained mouse in their pocket and somebody just happened to be able to tie a note around the mouse's body with a bit of string without kidnappers noticing? And how long ago had this been? How had she not woken up? Most importantly, did they take Eric? Jaye started pacing. How did they not know that she was there? It was all so confusing to her. She didn't know what to do.
She looked over at the fish on the wall and then down at the monkey on the floor. "Now would be a great time for some help, or guidance, or something. Gawd, when I need you the most is the only time you ever shut up." She sent another glare down at the monkey and then sighed, wondering what to do.
What about the police? Didn't they get some kind of notice about this? The police! Jaye ran to the phone and dialed 911 before realizing that the men who had kidnapped everyone in the restaurant had disabled it somehow. "What is going on?" Jaye thought to herself. How is it possible that something like this could happen? And why was it happening? She ran to the back room to get her coat, and on her way out, she picked up the little mouse and the monkey and put them in her pockets.
This took me a few weeks to write, and I wrote it during my free periods at school.