My Entry is an Excerpt from Damnation
Our car veers to the left, hitting a patch of ice. The rear bumper spins forward then a semi slams against the passenger side of our car. Bright lights strain against the windows that crumble away. My vision blurs on impact—like a 3-D movie without glasses. My arms have a bright shadow ringing them. Cara, my best friend, is in the passenger seat. As my head snaps back I catch a glimpse of her aura too. At that moment, her soul releases and whispers away, even before we roll. Her aura blows out—sixteen is too young to die.
As the car stumbles to the side, a boulder juts through my window, blasting glass shards against my cheek, neck, shoulder, chest. Momentum pulls the car to a slant, then leaves it on the crushed corner and roof, resting in the stream at the edge of the highway. The metal creaks and moans.
That’s when David’s soul leaves, easing out as he hangs limply toward me from his seat belt. His blood swirls through the water that puddles in the roof. The keys in the ignition rock back and forth, tapping against the steering column and each other. Click, click. Then nothing. Only the smell of hot tires and gasoline rides along my shallow breath and jabs the back of my throat.
My soul hovers, still tacked to a faint pulse, watching my body as if the car were no more solid than my spirit. Blonde curls fall in tangles, clinging to the bloody gash in my forehead. It’s odd not to feel the pain with so much of me bleeding and bent, the steering wheel pressing into my chest, and the bone of my left leg piercing my jeans.
A man skids down the slope beside our overturned car, his face a grimace as he kneels beside the window near the back seat. His hands hit the ground and he topples, leaning his face on his forearms. Sobbing.
Time gasps and in the next moment red, blue and white lights skitter against the rocky canyon wall and slide across the ice and snow around us. Police and EMTs arrive. I glimpse their faces—intense. They want to save us.
I’m dying over there. But it seems okay. So, I watch and wait to be released.
At first, I notice the darkness far off but encircling me at its nucleus, like a bubble slowly shrinking. My sight turns back to the car. Cara and David’s bodies are wrapped in that hazy cellophane. Mine will be soon.
The car lurches. My soul crushes back into my body. Tight. Confined. Reanimating each cell. Air rushes my burning lungs. A cry rises from my voice. Every break and bruise asserts its reality into my brain. Life scorches through me, enlivening each fracture and tear.
No! Don’t. I’m leaving this life. Feelings of home tug at me from both directions. Home, here, this cold place against the home my spirit craves. A tiny voice inside me whispers, “I want to go.”
Hands pull and turn my body, dragging me away from the wreck. Coppery blood fills my mouth and heaves across my lips as my body shakes rebelliously. My right leg thrashes against the ground, shocking the nerves up my hips and spine. Heavy hands push against me. I continue to rip inside, great crevasses of pain wedge through my gut. Every movement—it’s impossible to contain the agony—burning cold and hot.In a final retch, my soul rips away, and the bubble collapses, sealing me in nothing.