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The Key

By , Adel, IA
Salty tears slowly fall down her stinging cheek as she runs into the garage, closing the wooden door securely behind her. She locks it promptly, grateful once again that the door had mistakenly been installed backwards by old owners of the house many years ago.
Loud knocks and yells erupt from the other side of the doorway, and the woman slowly backs away, eyeing the door as if it might burst open with her turbulent husband any second. It doesn't, and eventually the banging symphony on the other side stops. The woman doesn't know if she should be grateful or disappointed that even her husband doesn't care enough to chase after her.
Shaking the negative thoughts from her head, she examines the garage closely, knowing that this is the place that will house her for the next few hours. She just has to wait for her husband to cool down, then everything will turn out fine. At least, that's what she tells herself.
Hanging from hooks drilled into the wall are two adult bicycles, power tools, and various mops and brooms. A plastic shelve resides in the corner, storing various things from car washing sprays to broken lawn ornaments and flower pots. The woman traces the edge of a cracked pot lightly, recalling the beautiful golden flowers that once lived within.
The walls of the garage, made of cement like the floors, make the room considerably colder than the adjacent house and make the woman shiver. Finally, her eyes rest on the thing in the garage that takes up most of the makeshift prison; the car.
The old station wagon screamed warmth to her, and the woman didn't resist climbing in. The leather seats squeal with protest as she sits down, and the woman jumps, startled at hearing the soft noise in the whist air. As she examines the dash board, trying to find a way to turn the heat on, the ignition catches her eye. Dangling from the tiny slot is something her husband has never forgot to hide from her before, and something that she hadn't seen this close of in years; the car keys. She grasps them tightly, and imagines turning them, hearing the car's engine start with a roar. Imagines rolling the windows down, maybe falling asleep to the sweet scent of exhaust fumes, and getting away from the nightmare that hides behind the other side of the doorway. Her wrist starts turning the key right as her eyes catch something maybe even more valuable than the keys, swinging gracefully from the key chain itself; the garage door opener.
She releases her steel grip from the key and pushes the button, not quite believing that it will work, and the garage door starts to slowly open. Banging once again sounds from the doorway, but this time the woman doesn't even glance towards the noise. The night sky's now visible stars gleam with approval, and the woman finally turns the keys to the car.





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