“Yeah, I can do that. That ain’t such a big deal, yes…. When do you want me to submit it?… Three days? Yeah, consider it done…. Okay then, bye” said Lara.
Lara worked at a shopping mall as a sales manager and she had just been assigned to submit a report of the sales of the various shops in the mall.
She was on a vacation and was returning back to her hometown. It was the middle of the night and she still had to drive fifty two miles. One of the things that she was eternally grateful was the Bluetooth connectivity in her car. She was an extremely cautious woman and she did not like driving with one of her hands on the steering wheel and the other holding a phone.
She was thinking to halt somewhere, find a motel and spend the night there. The nearest motel according to the GPS, which she was grateful to, was about five miles away.
She was thinking about the report, about how to do it, even though she had done many times. But one always gets a little bit of nervousness when they have been assigned an important piece of work.
There were farms all around her. They were fenced. The radio was playing some song, which Lara was not even hearing, but she preferred to keep it on because according to her it helped her to not fall asleep while driving in the darkness. The moon and the stars were following her. The moonlight lit the night sky beautifully and it made the farms look even more beautiful.
Lara was about three miles away from the motel when the car suddenly stopped and smoke appeared from the bonnet of her car. Believe me when smoke appears from the bonnet of a car, it means serious trouble and its always better to stop the car. As she was an extremely cautious woman, she did exactly the same. She turned on the hazard lights of her car and opened the bonnet. She got out of her car and lifted the bonnet up. Well, what do you expect? A lot of smoke came out of the engine or whatever part that was damaged. Probably the engine.
She started coughing and move about three to four feet away from her car. After a couple of minutes, when the smoke had stopped, she took another look at the engine. She knew that she could not fix it. She took a look at her phone and then saw that their was no signal. The only way to repair her car was to get a mechanic. But at this time of the night, it was impossible.
She decided to lock the car and take a walk. Maybe she could go to one of the houses in the farms and ask for some help there.
She began walking. There were huge farms beside her. She was a bit afraid. What if an animal would come out of the farms and attack her? She had heard that the farmers usually let their dogs loose at night, so that they get rid of the pesky uninvited guests.
As she was walking she saw a group of men about a hundred feet away. She took a good look at them and saw that the had bottles in their hands. They were drunk.
There were five men. One of them was singing, one of them was dancing and the other three were cheering him.
Lara thought that the best thing to do was to walk as fast as she could and never turn back. But it was too late as one of the men had seen her. This scared her. She felt a shiver run down her spine. What if they would rob her, what if they would kidnap her or worse what if they killed her.
“Look at what we have here,” said one of the men. He gave her a creepy smile.
“What is it?” asked one of the other man and turned around. “Whoa.”
“How can we help you miss?” asked the third.
Lara did not even look at them, she focused on getting away from them and as soon as possible.
“Miss! I am talking to you,” said the same person and grabbed a hold of her hand.
Lara tried to free her hand but he had a strong grip.
“Leave me!” she screamed.
“Oooh, that’s a nice watch you got there. How much does it cost?” he asked.
“That sure is a nice watch,” said another man.
But then suddenly the man who had grabbed Lara’s hand fell down. There was another man standing in between Lara and the group of drunkards. His back was facing Lara.
“Leave her. Never come back!” he screamed.
The drunkards suddenly seemed to get their senses back. They stared at the man and began perspiring. And before long they were running as fast as they could.
Lara was a bit relieved, but yet she did not who that man was.
“Thank you,” she said.
The man turned back to face her. He was an old man, maybe in his seventies or even more. He was tall, but also really thin. Maybe he was a farmer.
“Don’t thank me,” he said.
“You saved me, I have to thank you,” she said.
” Come on follow me,” he said.
“Lets get you some food, water and a roof above your head so you can sleep peacefully.”
Lara had no other choice. Either she had to follow him and get attacked by another group of drunkards.
After some time they reached an old house. It was in the middle of the farm. The old man opened the door and invited her to come in. She went in.
“Let me get you a glass of water,” he said and disappeared in one of the many rooms of the house.
Lara thought that she was safe and maybe if there was a telephone, she could call a mechanic and go home as soon as possible.
The man came back with a glass of water and cheese sandwich. He asked her to have a seat. She did as she was told.
She was really thirsty, she drank half of the glass in just one single gulp.
“I am sorry,” she said, as she felt embarrassed about what she had just done.
“Its okay. So, tell me what were you doing there in the middle of the night?”
“I was heading home. My car broke down and according to the GPS the nearest motel was about three miles away, so I decided to take a walk and well you know what happened next.”
The old man gave her an inscrutable look.
“Thank you once again,” she said as she finished eating the sandwiches.
“Let me show you your room, follow me,” he said.
Lara followed him. The old man showed her the room and told her that there was an attached bathroom to it.
“In the morning, go to a mechanic, there is one about five hundred meters from here,” he said.
“Yes. Thank you, may I know your name?”
“Its Alan Richardson. Don’t thank me so much, chivalry ain’t dead. Now off you go to sleep,” he said and closed the door and went away.
The next day, Lara woke up and came out her temporary room and closed the room only to find a note.
It read, ‘Gone for work, there is coffee on the table. You can go.’
She went to the table and drank a cup of coffee. Then she went away.
Lara had finished all her work and she had even submitted the report that she had been asked to do. But she could not forget about the incident and Mr. Richardson. She thought of meeting him and give him a gift for helping her that night.
Five days later, she returned back to the village with a basket of fruits as a token of appreciation for what Mr. Richardson had done. She drove her car in his farm. She got off. She stood in front of her car and took a look at the house. It looked really beat up. She felt that it was in much better condition when she stayed there the other night.
She knocked on the door. There was no response. She knocked it again, but no one answered her.
She thought that maybe he was working in the farm and looked around but there was no one there.
She got in her car and drove it to the next farm. She saw a woman working in the farm. She stopped her car and got out.
She walked towards the woman, who was staring at her with curiosity.
“Sorry to disturb you. Please can you tell me where I can find Mr. Richardson,” Lara asked with a smile on her face.
“I beg your pardon, but who?” she said.
“Mr. Alan Richardson. The man who owns the neighboring farm,” Lara said.
“I am sorry, but he has been dead since a decade now.”
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