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The Cabin In The Woods

Chapter 1 The Drive

By DaphsamPublished 4 months ago 5 min read
Nightcafe AI created by Daphsam

Chapter 1

The snowy back roads were becoming more challenging to navigate by the minute. The thick, angry snow was coming on fast and furious. Lizzie and Kevin had been looking forward to a relaxing vacation getaway, yet Mother Nature’s fierce snowstorm trapped them. As the SUV swerved again, Lizzie’s stomach rolled like on one of those carnival rides.

She glanced over at her husband. Kevin focused intensely on the icy roads. When they left their house five hours ago, it was not snowing. Kevin had hoped they could beat the storm. But the highway traffic was awful. It delayed them by two hours.

The sun had bid them farewell, and the slate blue sky was turning into an oily midnight. Initially, Lizzie thought the contrast of the white snowflakes against the dark backdrop looked beautiful. Now, the scenery had lost its allure.

Kevin had scoured the maps earlier and found a more direct route to the rental than the website suggested. He also thought it would be a more scenic and relaxing drive. He couldn’t have been more wrong.

Towering pine trees lined the abandoned road, swaying violently in the wind. Small branches were sailing through the air, occasionally hitting their red SUV. They hadn’t seen another car, house, or civilization for an hour and a half.

Lizzie rubbed her hands up and down her camel-colored cashmere sweater. The softness of the pullover helped settle her nerves.

“Can you pull up the maps again, honey?” asked Kevin, who looked like a mountain man in his red lumberjack flannel shirt and jeans. They had removed their parkas for the drive to stay cool.

Lizzie bent down to pull her iPhone out of her purse. Her sand-blonde hair fell forward, and the trendy long layers covered her pale face. When she powered it on, she could tell it would not work.

“No service; we have zero bars,” said Lizzie.

“Hmm, OK. I am sure we are going in the right direction, but with this snow, it’s hard to see exactly where we are,” said Kevin.

Lizzie looked at Kevin. Kevin’s brown chestnut hair was very short, catching Lizzie’s attention. His ever-present stubble beard was looking darker. He was one handsome forty-two-year-old. She glanced at the dashboard clock. It was close to nine o’clock.

They continued driving on the narrow road and encountered a large tree that had fallen down across the road.

“Damn,” said Kevin as he slowly pulled to a stop.

“What are we going to do now?” said Lizzie.

Kevin scanned his surroundings and saw a narrow road off their right. There was a sign that read, “Beware.”

Kevin looked at his wife of three years and gave her a comforting smile. He said, “We have two options: turn back and find our way back to the highway or take this road and see if we can get to our cabin before it gets too late.”

Lizzie worried her bottom cherry red lips and said, “Come on, with you navigating the roads, it’s probably no different from driving the rough terrain of the desert.”

Lizzie was referring to his time in the military. Kevin didn’t miss his days as a Navy Seal. He was happy to sit in front of a computer, creating codes.

Kevin had a keen sense of direction and an incredible photographic memory. He was confident he could find his way back to the road the tree blocked, but he was not positive.

Just then, a thunderous cracking sound boomed around them. Kevin and Lizzie turned to look out the back window. An enormous tree came down on the road they had just traveled. The tree had landed with such a boom. They were officially trapped from all sides.

“So much for our first option,” muttered Kevin.

“Looks like Mother Nature decided for us,” Lizzie said.

This romantic getaway was starting off on the wrong foot. When she brought it up to Kevin a month ago, he thought they should wait until spring when the winter was over.

Lizzie had fallen in love with the remote cabin on the popular vacation rental website, advertising a “Romantic Rustic Adventure.” It felt like a great idea. It was a one-bedroom cabin by the lake. The living room had big picturesque windows and a see-through fireplace to the bedroom.

Lizzie had imagined them roasting marshmallows, making love by the fire, and snowshoeing through the deep snow. It looked like an excellent place for a romantic weekend, a time for them to reconnect, relax, and enjoy the snowy landscape.

The car swerved again. Now, she really thought this was a bad idea.

Lizzie worked as an ER nurse at a local hospital, and Kevin, busy with this computer programming job, worked long hours. They needed a break to get away from the business of their life.

“We should turn around,” Lizzie said to her husband.

“Don’t worry. I am sure there will soon be a turnoff for us to return to the main road. It’s just a little farther,” said Kevin.

“I’m all for a little adventure, but I don’t want us to be trapped out here in no-man’s-land,” Lizzie said with a nervous laugh.

Kevin quickly glanced at her, noting that her forehead was wrinkled with worry, her lips pinched, and her hands wringing in her lap.

Kevin needed to help relax her fear. He didn’t want her to be nervous. “How about breaking out some snacks?”

It had been hours since they pulled over for a gas station sandwich at a rest stop. A little honey wheat pretzel would calm her squeamish stomach.

“Comfort snacks sounds like a good idea,” Lizzie said as she twisted her petite athletic body to grab some food from the grocery bags.

The SUV skated on the icy road.

“Be quick; the road is getting worse,” Kevin said.

After grabbing some snacks, Lizzie opened the honey wheat pretzels and cashew nuts. Their salty and sweet scent drifted around the warm, cozy SUV.

“What would you like?” Lizzie asked.

“The roads are bad, I can’t snack, I need to keep all of my focus on the drive,” Kevin said evenly.

“We should pull over and wait for the storm,” Lizzie said. Kevin said, “I don’t think we should wait; the roads are getting worse; let’s keep going,” while his eyes were glued to the road.

Lizzie observed his arms tensing, his hands gripping the black leather steering wheel tightly, and his huddling forward. His deep blue eyes squinted as if that would make it easier to see through the maze of snowflakes on the windshield.

The snowflakes slammed into the windshield like angry fists. The windshield wipers were fighting a losing battle.

“This storm is getting worse. I didn’t think the weather report said it would be this bad,” Lizzie said while crunched on her pretzels.

Kevin said, “Recheck the iPhone and see if there is an area with cell service?”

Lizzie grabbed her iPhone and saw zero bars.

“No service. Do you remember how to get there?” Lizzie said.

This romantic weekend getaway was turning into a nightmare.

As they continued through the ferocious snowstorm, the road grew even narrower. The trees lined so tightly that it looked like they would swallow the SUV. The road was as slippery as an ice rink, and the SUV struggled to maintain traction.

Suddenly, a heavy tree branch bounced off the windshield, sending their SUV skidding off the road.

Kevin wrenched the steering wheel to the side; Lizzie let out a blood-curdling scream as a car slid down the road embankment into a deep ditch. The airbags deployed violently into Lizzie’s and Kevin’s faces.

To be continued…..

This was originally posted on Medium.


About the Creator


Loving Wife, Mom, Dog Mom- A Dyslexic dreamer who never thought I could read or write. But life changed, and I conquered my fears. I am an artist, photographer, wordsmith and illustrator. Looking to weave stories and poems with my artwork.

Reader insights

Nice work

Very well written. Keep up the good work!

Top insights

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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Comments (6)

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  • Dana Crandell4 months ago

    Off to a riveting start!

  • Omgggg! Hope Lizzie and Kevin would be okay! Waiting for the next chapter!

  • Mark Graham4 months ago

    Exciting and cannot wait for Chapter 2.

  • Beware! It's icy & cold out there. (Not to mention dangerous--& somehow I suspect we're not talking about the weather or going off the road.)

  • A compelling first chapter.

  • Xine Segalas4 months ago

    Looking forward to reading more. I'm riveted.

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