Rachel stepped out of the elevator and quickly scanned the other elevators. They were all stopped on different floors. She breathed a sigh of relief and began moving through the cubicles, her eyes scanning for anything she could use against the strange man pursuing her. She grabbed a few batteries from one desk and large sized paperclips from another before continuing on towards the offices at the back. Her gut told her that the dark corridor leading towards the executives suites would be a dangerous cul-de-sac but logic said she might find something of use. Taking a deep breath she padded lightly down the hall, her fingers trailing over the doors until she found one that was unlocked. She stepped in and closed the frosted door behind her.
The office inside was clean and smelled of bleach; someone was a clean freak. Rachel flipped through the desk, rifling through drawers and all the bookshelves. On one she found a shiny Zippo lighter inside a glass case. To her surprise the Zippo lit on the second “flip” and she happily slipped it into her purse.
Finding nothing else of value, Rachel approached the door. Her nails had just touched the knob when she heard a footfall in the hallway. She held her breath and stepped back into the shadows hoping she hadn’t been detected. Beyond the door, the man had stopped. Rachel could hear his breathing, a sort of gasping snort like a child with a stuffed nose. Her eyes widened as she saw the knob start to turn and she ducked back behind the desk, squeezing herself into the footwell just as the door opened.
Rachel closed her eyes and held hear breath, listening to the man moving around in the office. After a few moments the man left, closing the door behind him.
The tall woman breathed a sigh of relief and crawled back into the room. She could hear the man walking further down the hall so she peeked out. Sure enough the hooded man was checking doorknobs further towards the end of the corridor.
Moving silently she stepped into the hall and ran in the opposite direction. She was almost back into the cubicle area when the office door closed behind her. She heard a muffled grunt of surprise and the sound of the man’s shoes squeaking on the tiles; the noises just made her move faster. She skidded in stocking feet and ducked into a cubicle he would have to walk past. Rachel could hear the man approaching, his footfalls thudding on the tile floor but she kept her cool. Using tape from the desk she attached two of the paperclips to a string of batteries. Almost immediately the clip began to glow red hot. Hoping her plan would work, Rachel dropped the batteries into a recycle bin full of paper. She then regained her feet and began running again, dodging through the cubicles towards a sign marked “Stairs.”
She was almost to the door when she heard a “whoomp” of fire and a surprised grunt from the hooded man. Rachel turned to watch as the tall man flailed at his jacket which had been caught in the blaze. She smiled and pushed through the door. Stairs led up and down. With any luck the fire would both distract the man; she decided to try escape rather than further confrontation. The stairs were cold under her stockings and she winced as she made her way down towards the lobby. She stepped into the entryway a few seconds later and turned towards the doors. She stepped outside and smiled in the cool night air. The police should be there soon and everything would be fine.
Rachel folded her arms around herself and began to walk towards the Cuda, only stopping when she saw the tall man, his coat still smoking, standing between her and the car…