Michaela walks into the elevator, she presses the button for her floor.
The doors slowly close.
She begins to hear one of her favorite songs playing over the speaker.
She smiles and closes her eyes for a second, listening.
Give me love like never before,
‘Cause lately I’ve been craving more,
And it’s been a while but I still feel the same,
Maybe I should let you go.
The elevator stops on the next floor, she hears the doors open.
Opening her eyes she is faced with a young good looking man.
He smiles at her. She smiles back.
He gets in, pressing the button for his floor, and then steps beside her.
Michaela is suddenly nervous.
The man glances over at her.
Michaela ignores the awkward tension that has apparently filled the elevator the moment he stepped in.
Although she could swear she’d never seen this man before, there was something she couldn’t put her finger on.
At this point the man turns to her yet again.
She’s had it and turns toward him.
Staring at him blankly.
Caleb: I’m sorry. Forgive me. I’m staring.
Michaela: That’s kind of obvious, but it’s not obvious why?
Caleb: I just, I feel like I know you…from somewhere.
Michaela: I guess I just have one of those faces.
Caleb: No…it’s more than that. I can feel something. Like a memory.
Michaela: (rolls her eyes) Look I’m gonna be completely honest with you here, I’m not in the mood to be hit on by yet another guy who isn’t ready for a real relationship. Been there done that, and I am so over boys disguising themselves as men. Wearing a suit doesn’t make you one.
Caleb: (laughs) That’s not what I’m trying to do. But it’s good to know.
Michaela: (softening) I’m sorry. (she laughs) It’s been one of those morning. You know when everything in the world decides to go wrong. I guess I’m just stressed.
Caleb: Hey no harm no fowl. (he holds his hands up in mock surrender)
Michaela smiles and takes a sip of her coffee unsure of what to say next.
She anxiously looks at the floor levels as they pass by;
17, 18, 19…
Is no one else needing to take the elevator this morning? She thinks.
20, 21, 22
Just as her floor is about to approach, the elevator drops, the lights dim, and there are noises that Michaela knows can only symbolize bad news.
The elevator halts.
Michaela’s stomach flips.
This has always been a fear of hers.
She wasn’t good in small spaces.
Michaela and The man exchange looks
Caleb: Looks like we’re gonna be here for a while.
Michaela: No. We can’t. Are we stuck? We can’t be stuck.
Michaela looks around frantically. She begins to press buttons like crazy.
Caleb: Hey hey, I don’t think you should do that. It may make things worse.
Michaela: What could be worse? I have so much to do today. And I am going to be late to my presentation. Oh my god I can’t breathe.
Caleb: Ok. Look at me, Ok?
He grabs her hands and looks her in the eyes.
Caleb: Take a deep breathe in,
Michaela follows his coaching
Caleb: And now breathe out.
Michaela breathes out.
Caleb: Ok let’s try it slower.
Michaela slows down her breathing but she’s still in a bit of a nervous panic.
Caleb: Just look at me. Focus on me. Breathe. You’re okay. I got you. This is just a momentary feeling, you’re having a bit of a panic attack, it’ll pass.
Michaela: And what if it doesn’t, what if we never get out of here?
Caleb: We will. I’m going to press the emergency button now ok. Someone is gonna come help us.
Caleb: Can I leave you for just a minute?
Michaela nods reluctantly, her grip on his hands tightening.
Caleb: Ok, I’m right here. I’m not going anywhere. (smiles) Come on, come over here.
The man brings Michaela over to the panel.
He presses the emergency button with one hand as he holds onto her hand with his other.
“Emergency services how may I help you?”
Caleb: Um hi, hello. We are currently in the elevator and it seems to have stalled or stopped in between floors.
“How many passengers are in there with you?”
Caleb: Just one. Me and a young woman.
“Are you both ok?”
Michaela looks at him with worry in her eyes.
Caleb: Um yes, but we need to get out of here. Soon.
Michaela: Please, please send someone to help, I can’t be in here much longer.
“Ma’am do you have any medical issues?”
Michaela: No I just hate small spaces. I’m a bit claustrophobic, and you need to get me out of here before the walls close in.
“I understand ma’am, just try to stay calm. Take deep breathes, if you have some water take small sips or chew some gum. I will get a repair man over there for you now.”
Michaela: Thank you.
“I will keep you posted on his progress.”
Caleb: Thank you ma’am.
Michaela closes her eyes and leans her head back against the wall. She sighs anxiously.
Caleb: Hey, you’re gonna be okay. We’re gonna be out of here soon.
Michaela: I hope you’re right.
Caleb: Here, (he takes off his suit jacket and lays it on the floor.) Why don’t you sit?
The man kneels in front of her, reaching into his work bag he hands her a water bottle.
Caleb: Here, take small sips. It’ll help.
Michaela: (takes the bottle from him)
“Ma’am, sir? I have a repair man about 20 minutes away. You will be out shortly.”
The man smiles
Caleb: Ah look at that, good news.
He sits next to her.
Michaela: Thank god.
Michaela sips the water and starts to calm down a bit.
Caleb: How ya feeling?
Michaela: A little better.
Caleb: Good. (smiles)
Michaela: Thank you.
Michaela: I’m sorry, I just have this thing, with small spaces…
Caleb: Hey, I get it. Don’t even give it a second thought.
Michaela: You’re kind of a sweetheart.
Caleb: (smiles) Well at least that’s a step up from…what was it? A boy disguising himself as a man.
Michaela: (laughs) Yea. Again, sorry about that. (she winces, embarrassed) You are all man.
His eyebrows raise.
Michaela: Oh gosh…why did that sound sexual? I just meant that you know you seem like a gentleman.
Caleb: (laughs) I know what you meant.
Michaela: Ok. (she laughs nervously, her cheeks turning red.)
Michaela looks away.
Suddenly feeling strangely aware of the fact that this guy is gorgeous.
Caleb: Can I ask you a question?
Michaela turns back toward the man.
Michaela: Sure. It’s not like we’re going anyway.
They both share a laugh.
Caleb: Do you believe in soulmates?
Michaela: Hell yes.
Caleb: Can I ask, why?
Michaela: Because I believe that there’s someone out there that you’re just meant to be with. Your heart is meant to find their heart. And life will somehow align your lives. And you’ll meet and the rest is history.
Caleb: Or is the rest up to you? Or us? I don’t think that people realize that you have to do some of the work. Fate and destiny only go so far. Sometimes you need to take the leap.
Michaela: So you think, people need to make love happen? That’s not exactly the most romantic thing.
Caleb: No not necessarily. But I do think that we often let love slip away. Love isn’t always going to hit you like a lightning bolt. It may not even look like love at first glance. Love is in the quiet moments. In the small things you share with someone. Whether it’s someone you’ve known for years and start to see in a new light, or a stranger you get stuck in an elevator with.
Michaela: See but some may call that fate… or destiny. (she smiles)
Caleb: True, but like I said the rest is up to us. So what do you wanna do?
The elevator lights go off.
Michaela’s voice is heard in a soft whisper.
Michaela: Take the leap.
The elevator lights come back on.
Michaela and The man are holding hands.
They smile at each other.
As the elevator jolts and finally makes it to the next floor, the doors open.
The two of them gather their things and stand up.
Michaela begins to walk out, but the man pulls her back in, catching her off guard, he kisses her.
Michaela pulls away taken back, but a smile spreads across her face.
Michaela: What’s your name?
The man smiles.
Caleb: You really don’t remember, do you?
Michaela looks at him confused.
Caleb: Let’s just say the last time, fate decided to let you walk away from me. This time, I wasn’t leaving anything up to chance.
Michaela: Oh my god. Caleb? You-
Caleb: I’ve changed a lot over the years; lost weight, got contacts, and got a lifetime subscription to proactive. (he laughs)
Michaela: You look great.
Caleb: So do you. Your eyes still sparkle from a mile away.
Michaela: (blushes, and looks down at her feet) Will you call me?
Caleb: You can count on it.
Michaela hands him her card, and kisses him on the cheek.
Caleb: I’ll be seeing you.
Michaela: Yes you will.
*I do not take credit for any images used in my edit.*