Title: Flutter
Rating: PG-13 for suicidal themes
Category: Drama
Summary: Is there anything that can stop her from killing herself?

She crept around the warehouse, keeping hidden in the shadows so she would not be seen by the few night shift workers who were taking out trash or enjoying a cigarette break. Now that she had made up her mind to do this, she did not want to risk being seen or getting caught.

A door opened about five feet in front of her. She managed to hide herself behind a dumpster before a handful of men passed through, talking and joking loudly on their way to pick up dinner from a fast food restaurant drive-thru. She held her breath until she heard their car start up and drive away.

She stepped out from behind the dumpster and took the risk of stepping under one of the floodlights so she could check her watch. It was nearly 10:40 which meant she had just over twenty minutes to get around one more side of the building.

She managed to arrive at her destination with ten minutes to spare. She had hidden once again from a second group of men on their way to pick up a late night dinner. This group lingered for a few minutes before getting in their cars. They were the smokers and they were arguing between going to Wendy’s and Taco Bell. She had a close call while they were out, the cigarette smoke wafting into her hiding place and making her sneeze. She had muffled it as best she could, but the noise still caught the attention of the workers. Luckily, a squirrel ran out from behind the next dumpster at that moment and they assumed he was the source of the noise.

There was an old salt box where she had chosen to wait and she sat behind it, leaning against it with her eyes closed as she waited. A small part of her brain was screaming that she was being ridiculous, that she was too good to be doing what she was doing, but the rest of her brain reminded her that she was stupid and worthless and that this was the only way out.

She briefly wondered what her parents would say when they found out. She figured they would be glad she wasn’t going to be a burden. She knew her younger sister would be upset though.

The piercing whistle of the train cut through the silent night, startling her. She squinted at her watch again, 10:58. The train was due in two minutes and it was right on time. She struggled to her feet. She wasn’t carrying a lot of extra weight yet, she’d been able to hide it from her parents and her friends so far, but she could feel it when she stood up.

Her hand absentmindedly dropped to her abdomen, rubbing it unconsciously as she made her way to the tracks. She felt tears stream down her cheeks as she remembered the night she had made her mistake. For an honor student, she had been pretty dumb. In an instant her life went from being organized and predictable to an after school special.

There was no way she was going to let down her parents. There was no way she was going to be the scandal of her small, catholic school. She had been accepted to several top colleges and she could only imagine the snickers of her friends and peers when she had to skip college to raise a child. She had visions of herself becoming one of those white trash mothers she and her friends always made fun of in Wal Mart.

She looked to her left and saw the train barreling towards her. The light was blinding and she almost lost her balance. She took a deep breath and started to take a step onto the tracks, telling herself that it would be over so fast she wouldn’t feel any pain.

A tiny flutter in her stomach made her freeze.

Her baby kicked.

Her baby.

The enormity of what she was about to do suddenly crystallized in her mind. She jumped backwards, her foot catching on the railroad tie, causing her to fall hard on her back side. As the train bore down on her, she rolled further away, out of harm’s way.

She wept as the train rolled by, the displaced air causing goose bumps on her arms. She hugged herself, rubbing her arms in an attempt to stay warm. She felt the fluttering in her stomach again.

“I’m sorry, baby,” she whispered as she rubbed her hands over her stomach again.

The end of the train finally passed. She stood up, her legs shaking slightly. It was time to face the music, time to confess to her parents and take responsibility for her actions. She made her way back around to the front of the warehouse and walked to the twenty four hour diner a few blocks away.

She hesitated for a moment before lifting the receiver of the pay phone. The tiny flutter in her stomach urged her on. She dialed zero and asked the operator to make a collect call.

“Daddy?” she whispered when his sleepy voice came over the line. “Can you please come and get me?”