SHORT FICTION MONDAY – “The Last Remembering” by Cat Lumb

Last week I asked for some stories to post here on the bloggy-blog. Enjoy today’s story – THE LAST REMEMBERING. If you’d like to submit, leave a comment or email me at authorlady22@gmail.com

 

The Last Remembering

 She saw the headlights out of the corner of her eyes as she skittered across the road. Initially she didn’t think she would be hit, but then a sense of brightness overtook her and a searing pain radiated out from her hip across her entire body.

 For a second everything was black. She heard a thump. There might have been a crack of thunder, although it hadn’t started raining yet. She tried to open her eyes but her eyelids felt heavy. There was no distinction between having them open or closed anyway; everything appeared dark.

 Then she heard a voice. High pitched and shrieking, repeating the same phrases over and over again.

 “Ohmygod. Are you okay? Ohmygod. Please be okay.”

 She groaned and the sound became muffled. A slit of light appeared and then disappeared. She focused all her energy on opening her eyes and found herself looking up at the sky, a faded light seeping in from one corner of her vision and then a face. It was a pale, haggard face of a woman with a wide mouth and smeared lipstick. She felt an urge to mention this and tried to lift her hand to put it to her own mouth. Neither the words or hand materialised.

 She became aware of a trickling sensation on her leg,  like an army of ants crawling up toward her thigh. It intensified, going from pins and needles to burning fire in less than a minute. She tried to scream. The only sound she heard was a low moan.

 The face shifted out of view. Her vision was smudged grey, the sky mixing with the dim light. Voices began to merge. There must be more than one person.

 “…came out of nowhere. I called an ambulance….on it’s way.”

 “…Gordon has first aid training, I’ll get him…”

 “Do you know who she is?”

 Abruptly the light vanished. Everything was black. But after a moment her sight was restored and she saw a man above her. His eyes were a deep shade of brown. He looked concerned. Focusing on him made the suffering bearable.

 “Can you hear me?” he asked.

 She tried to nod her head. Pain burst into her brain like firecrackers.

 Yes, she mouthed. Though no sound accompanied it.

 Another voice, in the background: “Do you recognise her? Who is she?”

 The man studied her. “Can you tell me your name?”

 The only answer that made itself available was incorrect. She knew that. But her lips moulded themselves around it anyway.

 “I think she said Callum.”

 “That doesn’t make sense.”

 The man faded and she felt herself being tugged backward, despite knowing she was laying the road. That’s what had happened. She had been hit by the car. She was laying in the road.

 There was pressure around her waist, like someone was sitting on her. She attempted to look, but there was nothing. She thought she could see the night sky but the stars were twinkling too brightly.

 “No wallet or purse,” someone said.

 Were they trying to rob her? Well, they wouldn’t get much. All she had in her pocket was a five pound note. She didn’t even remember picking up her mobile phone.

 A quiet wailing interrupted her thoughts. She was sure she had something important to tell them. She needed to say something, something about the five pound note. But the wailing turned into a screeching and made her feel as though she was drowning. She couldn’t see anything now, not even when she was sure her eyes were open. There were bright patches, but they came and went like a blinking lighthouse inside her head.

 “Stay with us love, the paramedics are here now.”

 That was the man. She thought she could feel his hand on her face. It was cold. A dull ache pounded in her right side. She felt sick.

 As quickly as it came the nausea dissipated and she relaxed. The stars in the sky had gone now and the sun was coming up. She could feel the warmth on her skin and there was a gentle haze of light in front of her.

 She had only ducked out to get some milk. She remembered now. Her cup of tea would still be on the kitchen counter with the tea bag in it, an empty carton of milk beside it. She had only expected to be a minute. A quick run down the road to the shop on the corner. She’d have been back in less two minutes.

 The light enveloped her. It was bright but she became confused. It felt like a dark velvet caress even though it was a blinding white. She felt weightless now. A little bit dizzy. She wondered where the man had gone.

 Her last thought as she lay in the road was one of panic. The realisation came to her just as her mind succumbed to the pinprick of darkness in the overwhelming stark white.

 The baby. She’d left the baby in the house.

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