It’s heating up in this elevator now. I’ve lost track of time since the lights went out. I know it was stopped for a while before that. I’m slowly losing my cool. And now it’s heating up.
I used to hear alarms ringing in the distance.
I think the loudest stopped shortly after the lights.
Everything got quiet then.
At first it gave me time to contemplate my future. Assuming I escaped from this box trapped near an unknown floor, suspended over a drop of unknown depth, in a building that is clearly in trouble if not already the subject of a disaster film.
I began to envy my future self who was clever enough to escape this deathtrap.
If only that was me.
Or could be me. To have a future, I had to escape the trap.
I jealous of a future that may not exist, that could exist only if I can use that jealousy to inspire a solution.
Or wait patiently enough for rescue.
I have a protean bar and a bottle of water. Or had a bottle of water, a good bit of it is gone now. Huh. So is the protean bar. Future me has been raiding my supplies again.
I hope it makes him happy, because it is pissing me off!
Wait, why do I have to keep reminding myself that future me is just me?
Anything that benefits future me is helping me escape to live to be future me.
This would all get so much simpler if the power just came back on. But it seems likely it won’t.
It is hot in here now. Sauna hot, but without the slick Finnish amenities. Especially lacking the short run to an ice bath, which seems really attractive right now.
Let me kick a few more panels, even if it doesn’t help me escape, it will relieve some stress.
And what to we find behind door number three, Alex?
We have here a fire emergency kit. A smoke mask, and a fire axe. On other floors there might also have been a standpipe and possibly a length of hose, but I did mention this is an elevator, right? It’s hard enough to have reliable electric power in an elevator. No one is going to provide a water supply.
But an axe. That could come in handy. I’m pretty sure there’s a way out of this car through its roof. Once up there, perhaps there’s a slick with oil ladder just out of reach in a smoke filled shaft. Doesn’t matter, finding a way up and out is at least doing something and could be more likely to save future me than just sitting here waiting to die before rescue arrives.
I can’t reach the ceiling alone. I’m not carrying luggage, not even a messenger bag.
But I have an axe now. Perhaps I can use it to make some toe-holds.
The first few swings against the stainless steal panels full of buttons just bounce and make a lot of noise. I pause, hoping to hear something knocking back at me like in the movies. But alas, life is far less hopeful in reality.
But I can work on the panel that sprung open. Use it as a weak spot from which to reach higher.
Wedging the panel open with the axe does get be just close enough to the ceiling to raise a ceiling tile. From that humble beginning, perhaps I can reach further. Sure enough, I can knock the corner ceiling tile free from its grid, and get a look at the real ceiling of the car.
And now i can see a glimmer of hope. For one corner of what must be an escape hatch.