Behind the exit

Behind the exit sign, North Vancouver, Canada 2018

Behind the exit sign, North Vancouver, Canada 2018

Writing Prompt No. 102

Thick smoke hung in the air filling the auditorium.

It was three o’clock in the afternoon. Ten people sat in the cinema enjoying a matinee. Behind them, slowly at first, smoke travelled through under the doors curling and drifting moving down the staircase finding its way up and around the chairs.

More came. No smell. No odour of anything. No one noticed until the smoke drifted across the screen.

The two young lovers at the back could no longer see what or who was in front of them. They stood up to leave but the smoke was heaviest there. The movie continued to play an intermittent picture through the gloom.

The smoke was so dense now it had settled in the speakers causing the sound system to stall and break.

The people began to stand and make their way along the rows feeling the rough upholstery of every chair they passed calling out to whoever might hear.

A glimpse of red light filtered through the particles bright in the gloom.

The exit sign, someone said in a loud voice that penetrated the darkness.

Everyone moved towards it as best they could before it faded and then went out.

A door opened the sound muddled by a lack of sight or smell. They were limited to three senses now. What they could hear. What they could feel. What they could taste.

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