April Prompt A Day
April 3, 2016
Coming up Green
The hand gripping my arm was fierce and unrelenting. I sucked in a deep breath, prepared to scream, but before I could utter a sound, another hand clamped over my mouth.
"Shh, don't scream!" he hissed. I recognized the voice and relaxed. "Promise you won't scream and I'll let you go, okay?"
I nodded and he cautiously released the hold he had on me. "What the hell are you doing Abraham?"
His brows pinched together and he dropped his hands away from me. "No need to swear, River."
"Answer my question, or I'll start screaming bloody murder and tell everyone you were trying to take advantage of me," I warned.
"I might have known you'd go all melodramatic on me," he huffed. His cheeks turned a bright shade of scarlet. He threw his hands in the air and turned to leave.
I giggled. "Abe, come on. You know I was only bluffing. Besides, everybody knows you don't like girls."
"I do so like girls. I like 'em just fine," he mumbled.
If he liked girls, you couldn't prove it by me. I'd been after him to kiss me for ages, and he never seemed to take the hint. I closed my eyes and puckered up. "Prove it," I dared him.
"Stop horsing around," he said. "Follow me. I want to show you something."
He led me a couple blocks over, near the security fence. He stopped walking and his gaze darted around. He held his finger to his lips, warning me to be quiet. When we were sure the patrol guard wasn't watching, he yanked me down the narrow corridor toward the greenhouses. He stopped outside a door with a padlock.
Before I could ask him how he intended to get inside, he pulled a key from his pocket and grinned.
He hurriedly unlocked the door and tugged me into the dank smelling space after him. He eased the door shut. "Look."
The dirty glass panels overhead didn't allow in much light, but it was enough for me to see the reason Abe had brought me. I walked deeper into the abandoned building. The smell of wet soil and fertilizer choked off my air and I pulled my uniform shirt up over my nose so I could breathe.
No one had been able to grow any vegetables since the drought had killed everything off five summers ago. No seeds, no crops.
"How did you find this place?" I murmured, glancing around. Row after row of thriving tomatoes, carrots, lettuce, green peppers, etc. lined the walkways. Everything was coming up green. "If they catch us in here, they'll throw us in the stockade and it will be seventeen days of hard labor."
"It's mine," he said quietly.
My head whipped around. "Yours? What do you mean?"
"I found some seeds in grandma's root cellar a few months ago," he said. "Besides, they can't do anything to us for being in here. My parents own this greenhouse."
As usual, he missed the point. Trespassing wasn't what we'd be in trouble for. Growing unauthorized food was forbidden without approval from the government. This was bigger than big, and a whole lot worse than being somewhere you weren't supposed to be.
I spun around and slugged him in the shoulder.
"Ouch," he cried out. "What the hades did you do that for?"
I hauled off and hit him again. "Once for bringing me in here. Twice for not telling me about it before now."
He scowled. "Always such a drama queen."
I shook my head and turned to leave.
"Where are you going?" he asked.
"To tell my father," I said. "You know he's Governor. I can't keep this from him, Abe. People are starving to death!"
To be continued...