See You EscaLATER

June 13, 2024

MARGARET is holding many shopping bags in the mall. She steps onto the escalator to go up a level, but it stalls before she reaches the top. Panicked, she looks around and waves frantically.

MARGARET
Help! Help! Please! Somebody!

 BYSTANDER ONE notices her and becomes horrified by the scene.

BYSTANDER ONE
Oh my god! Hold on! Don’t let go! Someone call 911!

MARGARET
Tell them to hurry! Please!

BYSTANDER ONE
We need help! A lady is stuck on the escalator!

BYSTANDER TWO enters the scene and becomes equally as horrified.

BYSTANDER ONE

You there! Call for help!

BYSTANDER TWO pulls out his cellphone and frantically dials 911.

BYSTANDER TWO

Hi? 911? Hello? I’m here at the city center mall and there appears to be (he pauses, then becomes nearly hysterical) a woman stuck on the escalator!

BYSTANDER ONE (shouting to Margaret)
Stay there! Hold on! Don’t panic! Help is on the way!

MARGARET
Please, I’ve got to get out of here! Help! Help! 

BYSTANDER TWO (on the phone)

No, she doesn’t seem to have any injuries that I can see. She’s, uh, still conscious and talking. Bleeding from anywhere? Uh, no, not that I can see. Oh, okay. Just a few minutes. Great, yes, okay, I’ll tell her. (shouting to Margaret) Help is on the way! Don’t let go!

Sirens are heard.

MARGARET
I’m not sure how long I can make it! 

BYSTANDER ONE
Hold on!

BYSTANDER TWO

Don’t let go!

BYSTANDER ONE
Help is on the way!

MARGARET
Hurry! Please hurry! Dear God, help me!

BYSTANDER ONE
Hold on!

MARGARET
I’m too young to die!

BYSTANDER TWO
Don’t let go!

MARGARET
I have so much life yet to live!

Sirens stop. Paramedics enter the scene in a panicked hurry.

MARGARET
Help! Help! Up here! 

Paramedics stop. They look at each other in confusion.

MARGARET
What are you doing? Help me! Please!

A paramedic approaches the escalator, walks up the stalled stairs, takes MARGARET by the hand, and leads her back down. MARGARET falls to the floor in desperate relief.

MARGARET
Am I alive? Did I survive?

The escalator starts back up.

 

Gillian Corsiatto hails from Alberta, Canada, right between two major cities: Calgary and Edmonton. She has been a lifelong writer, and her first book Duck Light was published in 2021. Since then, she has been motivated to keep at her writing and further it into an established career, even branching out into writing for the theatre. Currently, a sequel to Duck Light is underway, but she still pumps out scripts and short stories whenever an idea creeps into her mind. You can find her mostly at her writing desk, probably with a cat in her lap, and maybe even spinning a fidget spinner. She thinks those are still cool.

 

Featured image by Jon Tyson.

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