Broker in the Pit
The darkness is overpowering, consuming me with its lava flow of sheer blackness, denying my mind sanity, sequence of thoughts, and viable options for escaping this suffocating imprisonment.
What lunacy brought me to this space of horror? (It can occupy my time to explain this vacuity.)
A combination of anomalous events brought me here.
Where is here? When and Why?
The ‘who’ is I, of course, all alone in this dark dungeon of nothingness…my name’s Freddie Cheever.
I’m a jogger. It is my way to stay healthy and trim. Every morsel of food I eat must be assessed for its calorie count and nutritional value. I’m the obsessive jerk people talk about, the guy who takes each aspect of life to its outer limit, weighing on the mind-scale the logical and reasonable factors.
Okay, I had an appointment cancel on me…no reason, just a rude denial of our pre-set meet. I’m a broker, so I’m guessing the lady whose husband just died and left her with all the ‘e-pluribus-unum’ heard rumors about me that were launched by a competitor three years ago. (I’m blessed with fairly good looks and like women – but in very gentleman ways.) Guess one could call me a ‘womanizer’, because, in my opinion, a beautiful woman (in my ‘beholding eyes’) is truly a work of art.
But I digress…
So, I used that aforementioned appointment time with Ms. Snooty to jog. I had no other appointments on my calendar, so I shortened my day, went to my bachelor pad, decked out, drove out in the country to find new terrain for my jogging, found it, parked my Benz, and jogged.
I was into my second mile when I came to a big swath of leaves, and, as I ran through said leaves, I started free-falling downward akimbo and heard above me a slamming sound. Luckily, I landed on my feet – more or less – and badly sprained my left ankle. Whatever the slamming sound it left me in that pitch-blackness that started this narrative. My fall I judged to be some ten feet, but it was the slamming noise that really got my attention, not so much the fall itself.
This was by my reckoning an animal-trap of some kind, and, it was my hope, not a human-trap laid out by some very weird dude or dudes.
Though alone, I was mortified and damned scared. On hands and knees, I crawled the small space, judged the rounded pit’s circumference to be maybe ten feet or more. Its floor was all filled with the falling leaves and likely gave my fall some small advantage. Below the leaves there was just hardness, and all I received from my effort scratching at the surface was a broken finger-nail.
Along the walls of the pit was the same hardness. My guess was that it was either concrete or bitumen. The pit was likely used as a silo of some kind.
That’s when the utter black of the darkness hit me in a mind-chamber that caused me to inwardly flash, like a spasm passed through me.
Did I yell? No, my pit was so serene! Of course, I yelled until my throat pained me to swallow. It seemed that, with that acknowledgement, I was swallowing more often than I could ever remember swallowing.
Okay, I’m there for, guessing here, some three hours. My angst was deep like the hole I was in. I lay on my right-side for a while, then the left-side, on and on.
I did a lot of praying, not that I expected much relief from a Deity I had ignored badly over the years. Still, I prayed, supplicated, pled with tears my eyes seldom used for any reason – well, maybe a really sad movie could bring tears…if I were alone, NOT on a date, NOT in a movie house.
Then, the miracle!
Thought I heard a motor purring above me. Then, no purring of motor. When I felt almost on the verge of ‘flipping out’ a scraping sound came to my ears from above, then a small stretch of sunlight that got bigger and bigger. A gravelly voice came from above – a farmer’s voice, not my Deity’s voice.
“Who’s down there?” the voice sounded almost angry and impatient.
I tried to yell up to my hero, but my voice faltered. Finally, I found a squeaky refrain somewhere in the sore throat and softly sang out, “I’m down here! I fell while jogging.”
“I ought to leave you down there! This is private land, boy!”
I squeaked, “I’m so sorry, sir. It won’t happen again, I promise.”
“Okay, boy, grab the rope, loop it around your middle and I’ll pull you up.”
Did as I was told, and ‘thank you, my divine Deity. You did hear me after all’.
The farmer became my friend – and my client. Tom Simpson’s his name. I’ll never forget what he said to me when I hobbled with him to my car. He bore most of my weight on that short walk.
Tom said to me: “Freddie Cheever, huh? Well, son I have to tell you, you are one lucky fella! I usually don’t come this route. Just decided the last minute to check out this quarter of land. I saw the leaves all messed up, and they stopped at the silo pit.”
Funny how fate works at times. Maybe I’ll start going to church on Sundays.
For sure, I’m going to be seeing Tom Simpson fairly often…he’s a broker’s dream – big spread of land that feeds a lot of people, plus a dairy that yields lots of milk. That ‘e pluribus unum’ I wrote about just a bit ago? Well, good old Tom’s got enough to fill that darned pit I was in.
Billy Ray Chitwood – February 25, 2019
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