You trudge towards the bus stop. You’re a block in before you realize that your usual route, which cuts past a school, is in fact the single least likely place to have been shoveled.

Your legs are quickly coated in snow, and every step sifts more of it in through the tops of your boots. Just keep going. Soon you’ll be on a bus, and your feet will warm up, and you’ll get to keep all your toes.

You’re about a block away when you see the bus pull up at the stoplight behind you.

It’s red, you could still…

The light turns green.

Fuck.

There’s no way of knowing when–or if–they next bus will come by, and you don’t want to wait around to find out. You start to run.

The bus is gaining on you. You have to get there before it does. YOU CAN’T MISS THIS BUS.

You pump your arms and sprint as best you can.

The bus is stuck behind a car trying to turn left. You can make it! You’ll do this!

Just a few yards shy of the bus stop, you hit a patch of ice. As you tumble to the ground, you see the bus pull up to the stop. You don’t manage to see it pulling away, though, because by then your face is in the process of hitting the sidewalk.

At least one tooth flies away into the snow. Something in your wrist snaps. You can’t get up.

Feebly, with your good hand, you dial 911.

“911, what’s your emergency?”

“I need an ambulance. I fell.”

“What’s your address?”

“Uh…I’m at the bus stop on Elm?”

“Why are you out?” The operator’s annoyance is palpable.

“I was on my way to work, and–”

“Assholes like you tying up services on a day like this…” she mutters more expletives.

“Umm, will the ambulance come, or…”

“Yeah, it’s coming. You selfish prick.”

She hangs up.

Sitting up in the back of the ambulance–you’re starting to realize it might have been overkill, when it’s really just your wrist that’s the problem–you feel your phone buzz. You click the screen; it’s just about the time you’d usually be getting ready to head out for work.

Hey guys–

Looks like I was being too optimistic! Please stay where you are and work from home if possible. Be safe and warm!

God…fucking…DAMMIT.

“Hey, what kind of insurance do you have?” the EMT asks you.

Teeth gritted, you produce your card.

“Oh, man. They haven’t taken this for years,” she laughs, shaking her head. She turns to you, face suddenly serious. “Hope you have some money saved up, because this is one hell of a cab-ride you just bought yourself.”


THE END.


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