AN: Sorry for making you all wait. I'll try and be good this time :)

*hearts* Aderyn

by the way: I'm judging for La Campanella Awards (http://)campanella(.)overloaddd(.)com [minus () ] You should go check it out!!


And then my phone had to ring. With a curse, I picked it up. "What the hell do you want?" I snapped, willing the person on the other end to go away.

I heard a sharp intake of breath. "Oh," a male voice sounded confused. "Zena."

Jared. Of course it was. That would make this day just that much more perfect. "Jared?" I knew I sounded timid.

"I was just," he paused, silence hanging in the air. "Was this a bad time?" His voice turned curt.

"I- yes," I told him honestly.

"I see." He was icy. "Shall I try back later?"

I could imagine him saying that. Brown hair falling over one of his brown eyes. I could see his lips puckering up in a smile.

A smile? Why would he be smiling? It would be a frown. Something that I could not picture on his happy face. An upside down smile. I laughed at the image.

"I see." Jared repeated, now sounding offended.

It took me a minute for my brain to replay the conversation. It hear my horrible awkwardness play out again. "Jared," I began.

But there was only a dull ringing and his name fell into the silence.

A few minutes later, my tears had subsided and I turned on the car, keys clicking as the ignition fired up. I heard the jingly tone of my phone ringing again, and threw my purse into the backseat. Whoever was calling, I wanted nothing to do with them.

And then, the music started. I had left a CD in the car's stereo system and it had chosen now to play. I heard words, Lady Gaga choking out something about a telephone. Cute, I though sarcastically. And how wonderfully ironic.

I slammed my hand onto the eject button, cursing as I jammed my finger. The CD spit out with a resigned groan and I flung it irreverently into the backseat too. Who cared if it broke?

And then, my anger dissipated slightly. I wasn't sure where I was going, but I knew that I had to get away from here. From this madness that was my life.

And suddenly, I couldn't accelerate fast enough. Pedal to the metal. Gun it. Eat my dust. Hasta Luego. I was gone.

The suburban world blurred by. Houses, neighborhoods, apartments merged into shopping centers, turned into parks. Green, gray, black, white. It was all the same to me.

The colors outside had dulled, so that they were only a monotonous mockery of the world. If only my life were that basic.

And then there was red. A traffic light demanding my obedience. I slammed the breaks, smelling rubber burn as the tires skidded. Damn it.

A slew of curse words flooded my mind. I wanted to yell every offensive word I knew at the top of my lungs. I wanted to scream and punch the floor.

And then there was another sound. Someone cursing at me. Horns blaring. "Honey, the light is green!" Someone shouted.

I didn't even care enough to blush. Instead, I simply went forward, through the intersection, ignoring the man on my left who was flipping me off.

I watched the world pass by with complete disinterest, until I saw the signs. Fifty miles to New York? Had I really gone that far? It had only been minutes. Hours? Since I had left. This was going to cost a fortune in gas.

With a sigh, I slowed the car and made a quick turn onto a convenient side street. With any luck, I could make it home before dark. A skillful u-ey had me facing the right direction.

And then I had to stop and wait for the slew oncoming traffic to slow. It took more time that I had anticipated. And certainly more time than I wanted.

Absently, my fingers drummed on the steering wheel. Once, twice, three times. Then I reached over to turn on the radio. Eyes not leaving the road as I pressed the large button.

The sweet notes of classical music filled the car. It was something I didn't recognize, some piano melody that was probably by a more modern sort of composer.

Finally, a gap in the cars. I turned quickly and efficiently, sliding right into line. Automatically adjusting so that the car next to me could merge.

And then the world screamed.

I was numb. I could see nothing, hear nothing, feel nothing, smell nothing. I was nothing.

And then I smelt again. Rubber. Acrid and bitter. I wished that I could not smell.

And then I heard again. Loud. Screaming and frantic. I wished that I could not hear.

And then I saw again. Red. White and Red. I wished that I could not see.

And then I felt again. Pain. Ripping and tearing. Slick and slimy. Wet and Warm. Choking and suffocating.

The pain eclipsed everything else. Smell and sight faded again, but I didn't miss them. There was so much else to sense. The feeling. Every hair on my body was alive. Every nerve was active. Most were screaming in pain. Some noticed other, unpleasant prickling sensations.

A few picked up bits of sound. "Accident." "Young girl." "Oh God." "Twenty maybe?" "Yes, blood." "Eyes closed." "Oh my God." "I can't see her breathing." "Oh God." "So much blood." "I think she's dead." "Oh God."

But those sounds didn't matter. They didn't really mean anything. Just sound. Just noise. And as the pain faded, I was able to hear more in my floating black world.

There was that sad melody that I knew so well. The haunting chords of Swan Lake. And the music filled me up, carrying me away, until there was nowhere left for me to go.