The Id and The Odyssey; Episode 131

The Stretch  

Rich’s thoughts were dreadful and grave. His heart pounded and the veins in his neck throbbed. His mouth was dry. “They are going to have me killed. If only I took the school bus that morning two years ago. One decision altered my entire life. I must not dwell on what can’t be changed. How do I get these cuffs off or how can I get them from around the pipe? Relax and think.”
He lunged against the pipe. It was solid and gave no hint of it being able to be loosened. He lunged again hoping to feel the least amount of movement. There was not so much as a quiver.
“The room may be sound proof, but the pipe will carry sound.”
Rich began to tap Morse Code on the pipe using the metal cuffs.
“The chances of attracting someone are extremely rare. The chances of attracting someone who understands Morse Code is incalculably rare.”
However, he continued tapping.
He stretched out to see if a foot was able to reach anything else in the basement. There was nothing that could be reached. He pulled in his legs, relaxed against the pipe, and tapped.
“I’m at least twelve feet from the key,” Rich thought. “Stretching out completely leaves me about four feet away from the key. If I can get the key four feet closer I can scrape it to me.”
“The floor is made of boards. If one board can be removed that can provide the length needed to reach the key.”
Rich felt with his feet which board was loosest. He found one and began pounding with his heel one side and than another. Finally the board as lifted enough so he could lodge the back of his heel against it. He struck it until he was able to get his shoe completely under the board and pry it up and loose.
“The nail on the end can be used to hook the key ring. Thanks, Dave, for leaving the key on a ring.”
Rich maneuvered the board over the top of one foot and eased it toward the step by pushing it with the other foot. Painstakingly and with much frustration the nail on the board was placed inside the ring and the job of dragging it from the step and across the floor began.
“How much time do I have,” Rich thought. “They said someone would be coming for me.”

Finally the key was maneuvered around to his hands. He place the key in the keyhole and turned it. There was snap and a release. At that moment the lights came on. The door opened and a man hurried down the steps.