Stranded

Of course the car just had to break down in the middle of nowhere. Helena bit back a curse. And now it was starting to rain. Great. Just great.

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1. An Unexpected Stop

Of course the car just had to break down in the middle of nowhere. Helena bit back a curse. And now it was starting to rain. Great. Just great.

"Bring it closer," said Matthew, idly poking at the engine to see if that would magically get the car working again. He was no mechanic -none of them were- but it was better than waiting in the car and desperately trying and failing to call someone. At least he was doing something.

Helena moved her phone closer, the glow from the screen illuminating a small fraction of the engine. With no signal, her new phone had been reduced to nothing but a glorified torch. She hadn't even gotten the chance to download any apps on it.

"Any luck?" Patrick called from where he sat inside the car.

"Nope," Helena replied. She tugged at her sleeves in a fruitless attempt to cover her freezing hands and glared at Matthew like it was his fault. In a way, it was. It had been his idea to go by car, and now they were all lost in some forest in the middle of the night. All she could see were the trunks of trees. Oh, and it was raining. Cold water dripped down her neck. No way she could forget that.

"Get back inside," said Naomi, who was also in the car, "We'll just wait for someone to drive by."

Matthew harrumphed. "More like run into the back of my car," he grumbled. It was a one-way road and Matthew's beatup commodore was right in the middle of it.

One of the car doors opened and out stepped Patrick. He looked awfully warm and dry in his puffy coat and was fiddling with what looked like-

"Where the hell did you get that?" said Helena, referring to the umbrella in Patrick's hand. He pointed it upwards and the plastic tartan fabric opened up above him.

"Naomi found it in the glovebox," Patrick said and shrugged awkwardly, "Thought you might want it."

"Damn right I do. Stand here," said Helena and Patrick tottered over to her.

"What, don't I get any cover?" complained Matthew.

"You can get all the cover you want once you fix the car," said Helena icily. She was soaked to the bone, the rain was getting heavier and just generally not in the mood to deal with anything at all. Matthew rolled his eyes and went back to jabbing the engine. Patrick looked over Matthew's shoulder.

"Do you even know what you're doing?" said Patrick.

"Nope," said Matthew. At that point Naomi came out.

"We're stuck here, aren't we?" she said.

"Yep," said Matthew.

"Great," she deadpanned and looked around. "Don't tell me none of you even considered asking whoever lives here for help?" she said.

"What the hell are you talking about?" said Matthew, eyes focused on the engine, "No one lives in a forest."

"Then explain to me why there's a driveway here," said Naomi, staring at a point behind the car. Everyone followed her gaze.

There was a brick driveway lined with bushes that Helena would've sworn wasn't there before. She wasn't sure how she missed it. Its orange bricks was a contrast to the browns and greens of the trees and a wrought iron mailbox sat next to it.

"Who the hell put that there?" joked Matthew and Helena was glad that she wasn't the only one who failed to notice it.

Naomi laughed. "Are you guys blind or something?" she said, "Lets go see if they've got a phone we can borrow."

Helena slipped her phone into her back pocket as Matthew locked his car. All four tried to huddle beneath Patrick's umbrella as they walked over to the driveway.

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