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Cars

Stranded Without Electricity

​​I took a deep, long breath of the still night air… and let it out in a primal scream.

         ‘Okay, it’s not that bad,’ Vanessa rolled her eyes. She was hanging out the window of my luxury car – the one that had just spluttered to a stop on the side of the highway.

         ‘Not that bad?’ I asked, knuckles turning white. ‘Do you have reception?’

         ‘My phone isn’t even charged,’ she shrugged. ‘I was enjoying the evening with you.’

         I narrowed my eyes at her and she laughed.

         ‘Just get back in the car.’

         ‘No,’ I said stubbornly. ‘I need to figure out where we are first.’

         ‘We’re near Bentleigh,’ she said.

         ‘What?’

         ‘Bentleigh,’ she nodded. ‘Now will you hop back in?’

         ‘How do you know that? I thought your phone was dead.’

         ‘I’m psychic,’ she said, in a creepy monotone voice, widening her eyes. Her face cracked into a laugh, and she pointed over my shoulder at a sign that said “Welcome to Bentleigh”.

         ‘Oh,’ I frowned again. ‘Right. Do you know any expert mechanics in the Bentleigh area?’

         ‘Expert?’ she asked. ‘What’s wrong with a normal mechanic?’

         ‘For my baby?’ I asked, laying a shocked hand on her bonnet. ‘What’s wrong with you?’

         ‘Then no,’ she sighed. ‘No experts. Did you consider it might be electrical?’

         ‘Electrical?’

         ‘Yes.’

         ‘Why?’

         ‘Because all the lights went haywire,’ she said, miming the lights going haywire.

         ‘Great,’ I sighed, leaning against the front of the car and suppressing the urge to kick a tyre. ‘Where are we gonna find an auto electrical mechanic operating in Bentleigh at this time of night?’

         ‘It’s only just past seven,’ she checked her watch. ‘Why don’t you make some calls?’

         ‘No reception,’ I reminded her, annoyed. ‘We’re back at square one!’

         ‘You know,’ she said icily, ‘I’m not the one who wanted to take the scenic route.’

         ‘So this is my fault?!’

         ‘Oh good, you picked up on that!’ she shot back.