(Image from a Google Search)
Suggested By: R. R. Virdi
Object: Stolen car wanted by someone
(either cops or gangsters) (How about goblins?)
The streets of Chicago were always clogged, even in the Winnetka area. Down the crawling thoroughfare of Green Bay Road a young man in a rattling Buick scanned side streets for some kind of relief from the gridlock. He spotted a neighborhood road in a promising direction and turned.
Carson barely glanced at the mansions he drove past. He was happy with his apartment on the west side.
Carson nearly hit the roof of his car and slammed on the brakes as something large and fast-moving careened into his car. He cringed again when the thing didn't leave his window. It had a face—but it was in such terrible shape that it could hardly be termed human. It spoke to him in pleading tones that could barely be heard through the car's closed window.
"Please! They're after me! Please help me! They're coming!"
Whoever They were, he wasn't about to let the grungy stranger into his car! Carson rolled forward, but the mysterious person clung to the handle and banged on the door with his free hand. The motion caused the latch to disengage, and suddenly a rough hand jerked Carson out of his seat and he kissed asphalt.
"Hey!" He yelled, but the car thief ignored him. He was too busy grinding the gears and stalling the car, cursing all the while.
Carson heard shouting in the distance, and it seemed as if the bushes in front of one of the houses had come to life and were now crawling toward him, growling and wielding all sorts of weapons. Except as they moved, he saw they weren't bushes--the leaves clung to their slimy, round bodies.
Carson looked at the car. The young vagrant had not even made it a yard down the road. Evidently he was not accustomed to this particular variety of vehicle.
"Excuse me!" He called, pointing to the bizarre-looking creatures behind them. "Are they friends of yours?"
With a hair-raising oath the young man hauled Carson back into the car.
"It's your lucky day, mate, cause I can't seem to bloody drive at the moment and I am desperate to get to the airport RIGHT BLEEDING NOW!"
Carson stared at the frantic man—but the things had almost overtaken the car, so he started up the Buick and took off down the lane to get back to Green Bay Road.
The rattling Buick barreled down the streets of Chicago as Carson took turns willy-nilly, flying past traffic lights and stop signs to get away from those—
"What the heck were those things?" Carson finally asked as they put some distance between themselves and Winnetka.
The man rubbed his mud-caked hair to reveal the bright ginger color underneath.
"Goblins," he answered.
Carson took his eyes off the road only briefly to stare at the young man, but the dirty face beside him remained completely serious.
"What do you mean, goblins?" Carson fervently hoped the term had been metaphorical, even though he realized that—incredible as it was—he probably had little basis for that hope, after what he had just witnessed.
His passenger was looking at a dirty, bent coin in his hand. He smirked to himself and tucked the coin in his pocket.
"I mean goblins—you know, little green frog-men with terrible manners and worse body odor?" He spoke as if the nightmarish creatures were an everyday occurrence. "Oh, by the way, there might have been a few ogres outside the house, too, and those can smell you for miles. You might consider leaving town for a few days till this blows over."
"Ogres?" Carson actually pulled over and rolled to a stop.
The man's eyes grew wide. "What the bloo'dyou think you're doing?"
"Who the heck are you?" Carson shot back, crossing his arms. "You tried to steal my car, you are forcing me to drive you to the airport—I deserve some answers, and I will have them right here or you're not going anywhere!"
The man huffed impatiently. "All right; name's Darren—that's all you need to know."
Carson shook his head. "Where are you from?"
Darren frowned and squinted at the streaming freeways and the skyline surrounding them. "Originally? Chelsea; where's this?" He pointed outside the window.
Carson snorted; what kind of a guy had no idea how he got from England to America? "Chicago, Illinois—United States."
Darren nearly paled with horror at the revelation. "Please," he begged softly. "Can we go now? Lives are literally at stake, here."
Carson shrugged and pulled back onto the road.
"So can you tell me what all that fuss was about?" He asked the mysterious Brit. "With the—" Carson stopped, his tongue refusing to say what his mind did not quite believe.
Darren grinned, "The goblins?" He supplied. "I was kidnapped and trapped in a dungeon underneath one of those houses, and they are angry because I escaped."
Carson shook his head as he merged onto the freeway that would take them to O'Hare.
"And they're going to be after me, now?" He grunted.
Darren seemed far too distracted by his own thoughts and too casual about the existence of goblins and ogres.
"More than likely it's the car they'll remember," he answered, "so you might want to get a rental while you're here." He gestured to the airport just ahead.
Carson slowed as the traffic thickened and passengers milled back and forth between the crawling cars. Darren had his hand on the door like he was just about to slip out when Carson suddenly slammed the gas and the brake so hard he flew forward and smacked his head on the dashboard.
"Ow!" Darren thundered, holding his already-bruised face. "What the bloody hell was that for?"
Now it was Carson's turn to look pale as a ghost and lost in the recesses of his own mind. "Sorry, I thought I saw my dad."
Darren squinted at the rather numerous South-Asian family crossing the street. "You what?"
Carson shook the memories from his eyes. "I'm sorry, I don't know what I was thinking. That would be impossible. Dad died years ago."
Darren moaned and gestured to where a car pulled away from the curb in front of the departures area. "Just drive, you idiot," he growled.
Carson sighed. He hadn't thought about his dad in a while—yet he was sure a face passing by in the crowd had prompted the memory. What about the person had made it cross his mind? Was it the eyes? "It's just that, sometimes, you know, I can't help feeling that his soul is still around, kicking ass and causing trouble like he used to. He was one hell of a guy when he was alive."
Darren stared askance at him—which was odd, given that Carson had looked at him the same way
she he had talked about goblins. "What did you say your name was?"
"Actually," he chuckled, "I don't think I did. It's Carson." He parked the car and pointed to the airport doors. "There you are; hope you save the lives that are in danger."
Darren muttered something about Ecrivaine and already done, but he shut the door behind him and disappeared into the crowd before Carson could ask what he meant.