(prompted by Weekly Anamnesis #48)
She ran down the hallway, stumbling left, stumbling right. Both hands caught her against the wall as quiet tears spilt freely from her eyes. It was dark and she had only the feel of the smooth walls to base any sense of direction. At last she found a golden outline of a door frame. The light was dim but she could see a small dark rectangle at about the height of her head on the door. She got closer, tracing it with her fingers. She made out the letters H-A-P-P-I-N-E-S-S in block print on the rectangle.
Desperation swept over her. She fumbled for a doorknob, and found it, cool and smooth along the left-hand side of the door. In a flash, she envisioned the ease with which the door knob turned under her pressure. She could see herself slowly pulling the door towards her, and peeking around it to see the source of the golden illumination. Her heart warmed as she pictured her release, her escape.
But the knob didn't budge. She tried again. The damn thing didn't even jiggle when she shook it. It was locked. The golden frame was taunting as intense realization hit her. With both fists she pounded on that door. She screamed and yelled and sobbed, pleading for the knob to turn. It would not. She was still trapped. Her perceived happiness would continue to elude her.
She fell backwards against the opposite wall and sat there staring at the door. There was no legitimate reason for her to continue to try, but all she wanted to do was sit there. She didn't want to leave the door, just to forge deeper into the dark hallway without hope. And so she sat. "Maybe someday," she told herself, "maybe someday the door will open for me."