Driving at a steady five miles per hour under the posted speed limit, she was occasionally overtaken and passed by a more impatient driver who soon disappeared down the highway. Each time, the passage of the bright lights momentarily blinded Rosamund, reminding her of why she seldom drove at night.
Her eyes were readjusting from the bright beams of a passing car when she saw something rush across the highway in front of her.
Thinking it was a deer; she braked hard and swerved to the shoulder to avoid a collision.
Her car’s engine stalled from this rough treatment and she sat, shaken, beside the highway as the motor ticked, both she and her car attempting to cool down.
Rosamund’s heart rate was just returning to normal when a dark form loomed up in the side window.
A man, his face partially obscured by long, unkempt hair, knocked on the glass.
“Do you need a hand, lady? Open up and I’ll help you, and maybe you can give me a ride,” he urged.
Rosamund reacted instinctively, quickly turning the key in the ignition and stepping on the gas. The tires spun in the gravel before the little car shot out onto the highway, leaving the surprised stranger shouting after it.
“Oh dear, that wasn’t very charitable of me,” she said. “He must have been in desperate straits to be alone on foot out here.”
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