Trivial | Teen Ink


October 4, 2015
By WritinGirl PLATINUM, DeKalb, Illinois
WritinGirl PLATINUM, DeKalb, Illinois
20 articles 0 photos 78 comments

Favorite Quote:
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” ~Maya Angelou



He creeps slowly down the hallway, trying to still his rapidly beating heart. The eerie electric glow of computers lights his way, blinking an incessant, warning. Against his will, he shivers. The door looms at him, daring him to try. With a deep breath, he raises his hand to grasp the brass knob, cool beneath his touch. It’s locked. He knew that, of course, but he still frowns when it doesn’t turn. A small sigh escapes his lips as he realizes his kit is in his jacket pocket. In the car. His jaw muscle is twitching, a bad sign—any involuntary movement is. It’s an old fashioned security—lock and key. Out of place next to the high-tech equipment lining the walls around him. Then again, sometimes old fashioned is more effective than the technology today. You can hack a computer, but you can’t hack a door.
Unfortunately, he thinks grimly, running his fingers over the scratched bronze lock. He backs away, lifts his leg, and delivers a swift kick next to the lock. The door shudders, but he is left with nothing except a sore foot.
I can’t come this far to fail
The thought burns across his mind, tensing his entire body at the idea.
I can call
He scoffs quietly to himself. Yeah, right. He wasn’t going to dial her number until the job was done. Besides, his cellphone is in the the car. As he sits down, leaning his back against that sturdy door, he broods over the fact that the only thing risking his career was, to be specific, a doorknob. He had planned for everything, or so he had thought. This night had to go smoothly. It wasn’t just his job on the line, after all. His eyes begin to fill with water. Angrily, he brushes them away. He must focus. He should pick the lock. With what, though? On a mission now, he scrambles to his feet, squinting to make out his surroundings better in the wavering blue light. Desks line the walls, cubicles creating a twisted path through the room. He strides over to one, searching for something, anything, that would help him. Paperclips. That could work….he grabs a handful and leans over next to a monitor on screensaver. It’s not much, but the little light helps him accomplish his task. Three minutes later he has a pile of twisted metal; lock picks, to his trained eyes. Heartbeat racing again, he inserts two into the doorknob and tries to rake the lock open. It takes much longer than it should have, and sweat fills the deep crevises in his hands. He wipes them on his jeans and tries again, this time, slower. It seems to work. Not daring to breathe, he gently pushes the last pin up, the silence deafening in his ears, ears attuned for the slight click that means victory. Now beads of sweat are running into his narrowed eyes, his hands, trembling from concentration, don’t bother to wipe them away. Finally, muscles quivering, he hears it. The slight noise that breaks through the thick walls of silence.
The small sound that barely reaches the human ear, vibrates loud in his head, followed by the beautiful squeak of the door swinging free. With a furtive glance over his shoulder, he slips inside the office.
Safe at last
There is a window, barred across the inside, so he doesn’t dare use the light. Since his flashlight is also in his kit, he blindly gropes around, searching for the desk.
He rubs his hip gingerly. At least he found it. The drawer slides open easily—she was right.
As usual
The papers lie at the bottom of a stack, hidden in plain sight. Relief courses through his body as he folds them up and stuffs them in his pocket. It’s done. In his silent joy, he doesn’t hear the quiet slam of the door, nor the clinking of the lock back into place. He pads over to it, tries to open it, and is met with an unpleasant surprise.
Not again
He bangs his fist once against the wood and instantly regrets it. The sound thumps through the room, echoing off empty walls, alerting anyone in the building to his presence without doing an ounce of good towards opening the door.

Why? Why does everything have to rest on something this simple? What kind of game was this, where his life hung in the balance with a...a doorknob deciding his fate? The door is old—it has two ways of locking. From the outside and from the inside. With sudden, uncontrollable rage he throws himself at it a wild yell escaping his lips. Silent vibrations answer him, scolding him for wasting his breath when the door is clearly locked from the outside. The primitive tools lie carelessly discarded behind the thick blockade. Desperate, he rifles through the desk, then the shelves, coming up empty handed. Not even a paperclip can save him now. He slumps against the door, his head rolling against the hard wood, unable to stop the tears this time.
Not only stupid, he thinks bitterly,
He laughs in a kind of hysteria as the thought hits him.
Dead as a…doorknob

The author's comments:

I was given the challenge to write something off of the word "doorknob". 

This is it.

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This article has 2 comments.

on Jan. 7 2016 at 9:50 pm
WritinGirl PLATINUM, DeKalb, Illinois
20 articles 0 photos 78 comments

Favorite Quote:
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” ~Maya Angelou

Thank you! I'll check out those tense discrepancies at the present, but i'll certainly pay better attention in the future. Don't want to let that get past me again! (all puns intended :))

on Jan. 5 2016 at 5:13 pm
CNBono17 SILVER, Rural, South Carolina
5 articles 0 photos 248 comments

Favorite Quote:
Lego ergo sum (Latin—I read, therefore, I am)
The pen is mightier than the sword—unknown
Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity—1 Timothy 4:12

I'm thoroughly impressed if you wrote this off the word "doorknob." There are a few tense discrepancies, but other than that, it's a gripping, well-written piece. Love it!