Fall’s Torment

I guess this story starts with the feeling of flying, and the screeching sound of a distant car coming to a halt. The feeling of a cool autumn breeze engulfing my presence, the gust comforting me and feeling as if it grips my presence. The feeling I had at this moment could be shared with a few as it was unique to its own, almost indescribable. What was really an instant felt like hours, almost as if time had slowed midair. I remember the array of leaves on the ever-expanding trees, with their mid-autumn shades. At this point in time differentiating any singular leaf or color would be unfeasible, instead, I just stared at the beautiful reddish-orange blur, then closed my eyes. The first thing I noticed was the smell, the smell of rain, still lingered as well as the sweet smell of chocolate and coffee from the several cafes across the street. These paled in comparison to the overpowering smell of sheer nature, the forest. The scent of every outside object within my radius blended and fused into one metallic and almost sweet aroma. Something abrupt and compact woke me from this dreamish state as the frigid and damp substance, shocked me. I lifted my face off of what was presumably the ground and opened my eyes, this proves purposeless because my field of vision is a blur. All I could see were two adjacent white lights and the purplish background of the setting sky. At this moment I realized I couldn’t hear, but in the state of confusion I was in, I didn’t know what to make of this information and put my face back down on the road. Then I heard a noise, one which was presumably only audible to me, it was a high, raucous noise that would pierce my ears, it was of a frequency foreign to me. The noise was getting bothersome, that was until, the first wave of pain radiated from my arms, legs and head. It was from the fall. Despite the opposing cold asphalt, these parts of my body were warm, hot even, as a tingling, burning sensation ran through my body. What intensified this stinging feeling were the few open gashes left on my body, grinding against the tar.

Next, a second surge of pain overcame me, but this time in my abdominal area. I was short of breath. Realizing I was unable to fully breath startled me and caused me to become anxious. Around this time, my eyesight cleared up, allowing me to fully grasp what just happened. I saw an old and rusted parked car slightly off the road about fifteen feet away and the trail of skidmarks. It finally dawned on me that the car struck me from behind and jetted me into the air. Eventually someone emerged from the mysterious barrier of darkness that hung in the air and ran to my aid. The first thing I realized about the man, who I assumed owned the car, was his face, his stressed, cynical and dejected face which was frantic yet calm at the same time, almost to the point of being unnerving. Following him was a child, slightly younger than me, but before I could inspect her, my eyes began to feel heavy, and it began to feel encumbering. I closed my eyes with the child being the last thing I saw and despite the discomfort started to doze off, with nothing but the promise of sleep and relief as my lullaby.

*          *          *          *          *

No jaywalking, I read on the white sign that gently sways in the brisk wind, as I now pull back the foot that was once set on walking the slippery road, on to the sidewalk. I look to my right, and see the ever expanding sky begins to darken, the mist from the humid air making it impossible to see past twenty feet in any direction. Of course being down this road several times before, I knew there was an old, fading crosswalk somewhere in that direction. I decided to abide by the rules and be safe, after walking parallel to the forest, down the twisted and cracked sidewalk, I saw an old blue car break the wall of mist and speed by. I guess having a precautious, overactive mind isn’t always a bad thing.

– Myles Ford, The Haverford School, Class of 2018

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