Short Story Draft
Standing in line was hard, it became even harder when that line leads to something so scary like a drop ride. She may have been an adult, but previously when going to these amusement parks she avoided these types of rides. “I’m so excited!” she squeaked out, tears welling up in her eyes. “I may look scared but that’s just my anxiety trust me I’m very excited for this to keep me in line so my body doesn’t move without me making it.”
A hand grabbed onto hers, her best friend staring right into her eyes with a calming look on her face. The girl had short, colored hair that stood out brightly against her darker skin. With that calming look came with a calming voice and a squeeze of the hand. “I know I know.” the girl spoke with a small laugh. The two had known each other for over a decade now, that laugh wasn’t meant to be mean but instead was there because the girl herself knew the two of them wanted to go on this ride, only one was handling it better than the other. “You said you wanted to experience all the rides you were too afraid to go on as a kid. So you are going to experience them and I will be here with you along the way.”
“Thanks, Amelia.” the words mumbled under her breath, eyes now glued to the ground as she tried to pay all her attention to her knees, making sure they wouldn’t give way with each step. “I’m so ready for this ride.” more words managed to escape her, more trying to convince herself than her friend or the others around them. She had gone to this park many times in her life, always avoiding these types of drop rides and always regretting it after the vacation ended. Amelia on the other hand had only been once and at the time was too small to go on these types of rides. For both of them this would be a new experience, but handling it in different ways.
With these older types of rides, the railings aren’t what they are now. There aren’t any stops or benches along the way, just standing in the heat while waiting for a popular ride that everyone around seems excited for. There are even children in the line, the thought made her swallow hard. How could she be so scared of something that little kids were excited for? They were practically dancing where they stood while she, a grown adult, was clinging to her best friend for dear life with shaking knees and teary eyes.
“Alright.” A woman’s voice came out of nowhere, making her break out of her trance. The woman stood there, staring blankly at the two girls. It felt as if she were being judged by this park worker, someone who probably had to deal with this situation with children all the time but not with adults. That was just the anxiety talking though. She knew that these types of workers didn’t even care, they just wanted their day to be over with or for their break to come as quickly as possible. “How many?”
She tried to speak, but nothing came out of her mouth. Amelia picked up quickly on this, usually she didn’t talk to people but with her best friend acting this way, she quickly replied to the woman. “Two.”
No more was said from the worker, just a small nod of the head as she led the two towards the ride. A quiet “Thank you” was exchanged from the two girls and the worker, which in return replied with a small smile and a nod of the head before leaving.
“Let me go first.” She spoke to Amelia. “So I can help you out of the ride. It’s not fair that I’ve been leaning on you this whole time.” She had no idea how she was able to say so much while freaking out internally so bad.
Amelia nodded, letting her get onto the ride first. With the bar going down on their laps quickly, this was the moment she knew there was no getting off.
There was one more thing that she hated about these types of rides, the fact that even though they are drops, it almost never feels like there’s something comfortable to hold on to. Amelia even held out a hand, and while she did take it, this still felt uncomfortable. This just added onto the feeling of anxiety. When one’s anxious, having something comforting wrapped around tends to help, making the person with anxiety feel more secure and safe. This was the total opposite. She didn’t even notice that the ride had started until they started going uphill. Most people start breathing rapidly when having this bad of anxiety, but instead she faced another issue- not breathing enough. Holding her breath and reaching out to cling to the bar in front of her was bad, but the fact that the tears welling up in her eyes making her unable to see made it even worse!
“You’re okay.” Was the last thing she heard from Amelia before everything went dark for a second.
The feeling of going down was horrible, her lungs suddenly felt like they had no air in them. Yes, it only lasted for a second and her mind felt the situation was so horrible she didn’t even remember going down, but the effects were still on her body.
“Wasn’t that fun?” Amelia’s voice was full of joy. She had wanted to go on this ride her whole life. “Just like the other rides right? Want to go back on again?”
“No.” She spoke in return, short and simple as her legs wobbled as she stood up. After getting out of the ride and helping Amelia out, she found it hard to walk with her legs failing beneath her with every step. “I never want to do that again.”
Amelia seemed a little disappointed, with all the other rides they had gone on she was happy and wanted to go on again, but this one apparently had crossed the line. “Well at least you have a picture! Pull it up on the app already!”
She did as Amelia suggested, reloading the app a few times until the photo appeared on the screen. “Noooo.” she whined. “I hate people so much!” They could have gotten it framed. It could have been a nice memory of torture that they could laugh at in the future. But no, not with this in the way.
“Dang.” Amelia whispered. “Guess we will have to go back on again.” It was a joke, but a glare was sent her way in return. “Kidding!” She laughed. “We can just deal with the rude teenager flipping a double bird at us then. Unless you feel better later and go back on again. That could work too.” The last part was whispered, a joke, but some hope was still lingering in her voice.