01 Feb I’m Stuck on a Road That Has No End
I hate driving. The only reason why I bought a car was in order to get to places more conveniently without having to wait for buses. If you ask me what car I drive, I can’t tell you more than what color it is. I had just left from my parents’ home and I had a two-hour long car drive ahead of me. It was dark already and the highway was surprisingly crowded at the paytoll, so I checked my GPS for another route. It led me to an old road that I never took before and it looked like I could cut 20 minutes, so I decided to take it.
The road itself seemed well-maintained, but the problem was there were no lights anywhere. Even with my high beams I could barely see through the devouring darkness ahead of me. I slowed down, unsure if there were any upcoming curves or animals that could jump in front of my car.
About ten minutes into my drive, I saw a person on the side of the road. He was holding his thumb out, trying to hitch a ride. I didn’t really want to let strangers inside my car, especially in an isolated place like this one, so I ignored him and moved on. I wondered what the guy was doing in the middle of nowhere hitchhiking, but I shrugged it off and continued.
Ten minutes after that, I saw another person on the side of the road with his thumb out. As I passed by, I realized it was the same person. His face and clothes were dirty, but it was undoubtedly the same person. Had I somehow gone back? I had been driving forward this whole time and there were no turns or curves anywhere. I checked my GPS and I seemed to be on the right track, 74 km remaining. Suspicious, but convinced there was a logical explanation, I continued.
Ten minutes later, there he was again. Same person, and yet different. His forehead was bloody and his clothes ripped in places. I looked at him holding his thumb out and sped my car up. At this point I started to panic a little. I turned on my GPS again and it showed I still had 90 km ahead until the next turn. What the hell?
Another person on the road. The same person again, bloodier than last time, arm which he held out visibly fractured, with a bone sticking out. I looked away from him and continued driving. I looked at the GPS and it showed that I had 105km in front of me. What’s going on here dammit?! I inhaled and exhaled deeply, telling myself there should be a gas station or some fucking thing nearby. The road can’t stretch on forever, right?
Ten minutes had passed since running into the person on the road and there he was again. He was bloody all over and his clothes were ripped in various places. He had a huge scar on his forehead and blood was running down his face. I ignored him once more, feeling his gaze on the back of my head as I passed by. I looked at the GPS. 187 km until I reach my destination. Fuck.
I turned on the radio to have something keep me company from this deafening silence and I found a talk show. It put my mind at ease a little bit, made me feel like I was not completely alone. The person on the radio talked about the news and I tried to listen to him, focusing on the road and hoping against hope I would not run into that guy again.
“Now if we move on to the sports news, our boys scored an amazing-“
The voice stopped for a brief moment, which made me think the radio cut out, but then it continued.
“Don’t look behind.”
I stared at the road, but squinted my eyes, trying to figure if I had just imagined that.
“Do not look behind. Whatever you do. DON’T. LOOK. BEHIND.”
My blood froze and I suddenly got a very strong urge to look in the rearview mirror. I resisted for a few seconds and then fell into the trap and looked.
The person who was hitchhiking was on my back seat, bloodier than ever, staring at me. I screamed and swerved off the road, falling into a ditch that stopped my car completely, forcing me to slam my head on the steering wheel. It took me a moment to regain my senses and when I did, I jerked my head towards the back seat. It was empty.
I dragged myself out of my car, assessing the damage. There was no way I could get it out of the ditch. I looked around, having a sudden feeling of unease and then pulled out my cellphone to call for help. But no matter what number I called, the line was dead, so I did the only thing I could think of. I went back to the road on foot and started walking.
A few minutes into my hike and I saw headlights coming from behind me. I put my thumb out to hitch a ride, but the car just drove past me. I continued walking and some time later, another set of headlights appeared in the distance. I raised my thumb again, but the car didn’t slow down. As it drove past me, a shocking realization hit me like a ton of bricks.
It was the same car from before. It’s been an hour and the same car keeps passing by