Contest entry for the Jan. 2009 Writing Challenge Contest hosted by the Review Game! :D
Prompt: How did we end up this way?
1248 words (not including notes)
Please review, even if you're not a part of the contest or forum.
Where Will This Road End?
The sound of the rain is hypnotizing.
Thump. Thump. Thump.
I slam my foot on the brake paddle. Water rushes into the open window, its coldness cutting sharp lines across my face as my tires dance a wild tango with the asphalt. His screams echo in my ears, the shrill ringing making me furrow my brow and open my throat. His voice fades, as if it never was, and all that pounds in my head is the vibration of my own vocal cords.
The thought pulses through my mind, bouncing off of my skull and attempting to drill its way into reality. My lashes bid each other adieu, as the light ruthlessly forces my vision into focus. I didn't know my eyes were even closed.
The car had stopped.
"Oh no," I mutter nervously to myself, my heart immediately jumps to its feet, singing out loud as it shoots itself full of stimulants. I reach a hand to the passenger seat – oh, I'm still mobile. "Oh, thank God, he's okay." I let out a sigh of relief and lean back in my chair, as the annoying organ in my chest reluctantly sinks back into submission, silently foaming from its mouth.
Well, the leather is ruined.
I ignore the pool of water that is soaking through my jeans; I sit back and stare blankly ahead. The hood of the car had popped, and now it waves helplessly in the air, calling and screaming for attention and humanity. I can hear it. The raindrops pummel the wreckage; little splashing bombs. Hit after hit, creating dazzling explosions of rainbows.
Thump. Thump. Thump. Thump.
Ruthless, really ruthless.
It's strange. A drop of acid hits my head, but I feel no different. Oh, my hair is wet. Was it already wet? That would explain why I couldn't see a thing while I was driving.
The rain continues to punch my head and body, eagerly cheering on my shivers. So, so strange. It hurt, a lot. The rain always looks so harmless and beautiful, leaping from the sky like the silent tears of a martyr. It hurts when the raindrops slam into my skin, but the sound is soft.
Thump. Thump. Thump. Thump. Thump.
I wonder if the metal hurts too. The sound the raindrops make as they tackle the car is loud, booming, even. Yet, the vehicle still makes its way down the road ever so faithfully, and there is never a wound or scar to show.
Does it hurt in silence?
"I have to go," I whisper in a voice that reminds me of my sister's hair – brittle and flat. I grunt a few more times, trying to recreate the sensation. The hollow sound is gone. I drop out of the car; the door is missing. Darn. I must have left it open while I was driving again.
There is a raw sting on my knees, and the coarse fabric of my Levis suddenly become unbearably uncomfortable. I look down, but all that fills my vision is a dirt-streaked and dripping mass of red. It smells; I need to wash it. There's a blur of red, blue, and… no… I squeeze my eyes shut, attempting to transfer the tingling pain. Squeeze. Nothing.
I scramble to my feet and get a good view of the car. I was right – no driver's side door. There are scratches all over the pathetic excuse for white. Darn, darn, darn. I crashed into a tree. The front of the car is scrunched together – like that picture of Phil and I… smiling… what was it? Our… our… wedding picture! Yes, that's what it was – a wedding. It was a happy wedding on a warm and sunny day; nice and white and clean. Clean and white and warm and warm...
There was a fire. No, not a fire… it was red and warm though– a huge, bright, blinding splash of red, like the cheek of a child in the winter. There is crimson on my palm. Palms should be red, right? Because there is circulation and blood and… blood.
Is that blood on my palm?
"Phillip? Phillip!" after I register the sore vibration of my vocal cords, the scream has already faded. I rush to the passenger's side of the car. The window is gone. No shattered shards, no blood, and no pain; just gone. I spot the folded black blur. Thank God. I rip the door open and claw at the hideously heavy air bags.
Oh, darn. Now the rain is abusing him too! Phillip never liked the rain. He must be so angry right now. Hey, Phil. Phil. Oh, I forgot to speak aloud.
He doesn't answer.
Of course, he can't.
Oh, the bag tore during the crash! The plastic is strangely soft and slippery against my trembling fingers. How horrible, I don't have another one. I run my fingers through his hair; his soft, curly, bloodstained hair. Phil doesn't like blood. Phil doesn't like being in a bag either… and he probably hates me now for breaking his favorite photo frame. Phil must be so, so angry at me for wrecking the car too.
I'm sorry. I always mess up like this. The kids must hate me too. Oh, the kids! Silly, silly me! I have to pick up Billy from soccer practice now, since you can't. Oh, then Billy will be mad at me too. He hates it when I show my face. I am so absolutely horrible at home; I don't want to embarrass him in front of his friends! He will be angry… angry… Emily has ballet doesn't she? Oh, she'll be furious if I'm late. So furious; so, so furious…
Darn. Darn. Darn.
And all those police officers at the house… I just had to get out. You don't mind, do you? No, what am I saying? Of course you do mind! Sweetie, it's so nice of you to stay quiet. I know you hate unnecessary company. Oh, but the house was as messy as a shark's stomach! There was that terrible mess too… broken glass everywhere, stains on the wall – a mess, such a mess. I'm so useless; it was so stupid of me to make the house so dirty. I should have cleaned up; I really should! Why didn't I? Useless, useless me. Our guests must be disgusted… very disgusted… how disgusting…
I can't breathe.
I have to go back.
Oh, but this is nice. You're not yelling at me, and my head isn't spinning anymore. Everything is so light and easy; like it was in the beginning. Remember the beginning, Phil?
Nobody was mad.
June 21, 1987.
Second Degree Murder; Pleaded Insanity.
I'm not trying to be cocky or anything... but try to notice these:
The italicized onomatopoeia (and which are not italicized), and the amount of words. Think of them in relation to each other and to the story -- together and separately. :3
That's about the main thing I really don't want people to miss out on, (and if you don't get it, I'll be glad to explain.) but there are other metaphors and connections in the story worth noticing too.
Oh, and I'm sure you can fill in the "Where" and "How" questions. x]
Gosh I sound like an English teacher.
First of all, I would like to say I don't know anything about law or the court... so... don't bite me. I gathered whatever information I could from google.
The repetition is intentional, as is the insanity and loosely organized style. Since, you know, the main character is kind of insane?
Notice what things she says out loud and what things she thinks she's saying them aloud, but really isn't. It's intentional. Don't scream at me for not using quotation marks.
Lastly... if you don't understand what happened in the story -hitsyouovertheheadwithashovel- (or think you kind of get it and kind of dont), I'll be glad to explain.