The following is a sequel to a story posted by The Ceaseless Reader. It’s titled Sick Day. I recommend you check out other posts from his blog.
The dim light of a gray dawn failed to elevate my mood as I locked my door then turned toward my car, and a sudden cloudburst doused what little cheer I had begun trying to muster.
As I exited the highway and turned onto the treacherous county road winding through the rocky hills on my final approach to work, I found myself once again bemused by how I’d arrived there. The drive had become so routine that my mind disengages, and muscle memory takes over.
But when a sudden, stentorian ripping sound drew my eyes skyward as I approached the tunnel bored through Crummer’s Knob, and I saw an enormous, hairy arm begin to emerge from the slit in the torn clouds, I was instantly present. Heart pounding and coated in a sheen of chill sweat, I entered the tunnel, pulled to the side, killed the ignition, and reached for my phone. “B-Boss,” I stammered, “I don’t think I’m gonna make it in today.”
In my rearview mirror, I watched the arm crash to the ground. Silence. Then I heard a faint whimpering sound.
Oh, no, I thought, that giant arm has landed on someone. I have to check it out.
“Er, Boss, I might not make it in at all.” Like forever.
I eased out of the car and crept to the edge of the tunnel. The whimpering grew louder; it was coming from the direction of the arm. I looked around and MY CRIMINY! That arm was just an arm! I mean, that was all there was to it! No body attached to it! OH, MY OTHER CRIMINY! It was the arm that was crying!
Now I’m telling you, if you have never heard an arm cry, the sound is downright heartbreaking. I tiptoed closer until I was near the hand.
“Er, Mr. Arm,” I began; then I noticed the fingernails.
“Er, Ms. Arm,” I said, “are you alright?”
The hand started horribly at the sound of my voice and began to shake.
“Hey, hey, it’s okay,” I said. “I’m here to help.”
Oh boy, I thought, how do you help a disembodied arm? And a very large one at that!