Loop Hole

Leena Auckel posted under Flash Fiction QuinTale-44 on 2022-09-24

Aryan scrunched the paper in which "Don't leave" was scribbled, tossed it away and alighted from the bus. As he was crossing the road, a racing car came straight at him and Bam! Few hours later, He woke up in a hospital with various tubes connected to him abridged to a monitor.  Aryan started gasping for air and the monitor went- Beep beep beep ending with a shrill triiiinng. Trriing his alarm went off! Aryan woke up still in shock and wiped the beads of sweat dotted on his face.  He got ready and soon he was in the bus heading for work. He sat in his usual window seat placing his briefcase on his lap and gazed at the countryside.   Shortly, he reached his destination and as he was going to get off, he felt a paper beneath his seat. He unfolded it; It read "Don't leave". The paper seemed familiar but he couldn't remember where he had seen it. He threw it away and got down. While crossing the road he was got over by a speeding truck and passed out. "I shouldn't have left. I shouldn't have left." Aryan rattled off in his sleep and woke up in a start. "Not the same dream again." The next day he followed the same routine, he felt a foreboding sense of dread but couldn't fathom the reason. He got off at his usual bustop and made his way towards his office. “Hey Aryan!”a voice called. He turned around to find no one and in the split of a second he was run over by a van and woke up drenched in sweat again. The following day he booked a cab and headed to his psychiatrist, Dr. Kumar. "Hello Aryan, long time no see!" How have you been? Is your sleep better?  The days off from work are working wonders right? “Actually I have been getting those nightmares lately...the same dream every single day, I wake up to go to work and meet with an accident  and I wake up in panic.” “It seems you left your work but your work stress didn’t leave you. You are stuck in a loop. Those notes are messages from your subconscious to you telling you not to leave for that hectic life but you can’t seem to remember that you have written that note yourself!” “How can I get out of this?” “We have to break the loop! You have to remember Not To Leave. D not get down at any stop at any cost!” Few hours later, Dr. Kumar got a call on his mobile, "Thank you doctor. You were right I had to break the loop. I abided by the note and even returned back by bus." "Very good Aryan. OK it's quite late I am making a move for home too." Dr. Kumar revved up his car... as he buckled his seatbelt, he felt a crumpled paper tucked there on which was written, “Don't leave.” He froze.   Penmancy gets a small share of every purchase you make through these links, and every little helps us continue bringing you the reads you love!