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Everyone blamed it on the rising sun. It was an accident, plain and simple. Nothing caused it; people just find comfort in blaming something.
My older brother Lane and I are being sent on an errand for our mother. We live three miles out so we have to drive to town. Its summer vacation and we won’t be going back to school until September. Lane will be a senior and I a sophomore.
We climb into the truck, an old green Chevy that is in desperate need of a paint job. It’s ancient and was a gift to Lane from our grandfather two years ago. But he loves it anyway and says he won’t get rid of it until it dies. Sometimes I’m convinced he would marry it, given the chance. He turns the ignition over and pretty soon we’re rumbling down the driveway.
“I think we should go to the post office and drop the mail off then go to the grocery store.” Lane suggests as he rolls his window down. His curly blond hair starts to blow all over.
“That's fine by me as long as we don’t have to go near the sample lady.” I reply. “Every time I’m in there she’s really nosey and annoying. If I say I don’t want whatever she has I mean it. But she just keeps persisting.”
“You know she’s just doing her job.” Lane says with a laugh. “I personally kind of like her. She seems nice. In a way she reminds me of grandma,” he continues comparing her to our late grandmother who passed away several years earlier.
I lean my head against the window and let the bumpiness relax me. Lane turns up the radio and the sound of Nickelback plays in the background. I close my eyes and the last thing I see are the inside of my eyelids.
You wouldn’t expect someone to survive a catastrophe of this proportion, but I did.
The impact of rolling down a massive hill at 55 mph destroyed the truck, to say the least. It smashed all of the windows and sent the shards of glass all over the surrounding area. The hood of the truck now resembled something similar to an accordion. The roof looked as if a giant fist punched it in. I’ll spare the details of what happened to its bed. What is left of the vehicle is now on fire.
At first it seems like a dream. I soon realize I am in a ditch. I taste an unfamiliar liquid in my mouth its blood. My head feels like its being pounded with a hammer in a million different places. I look down and examine the rest of my body. Nothing is out of the ordinary. I’m not even bleeding anywhere. There’s a gash above my right eyebrow that is the cause of the blood running down my face and into my mouth. I slowly get up stumble upwards to the road.
The scene before me doesn’t register in my mind at first. The battered body of my brother lies before me. I can see the wound on his leg through is torn jeans. I hold back from vomiting as I move closer past the demolished truck. His skin and muscle beneath it is torn back, streaks of white that must be bone. There’s more blood soaking through his t-shirt. His eyes are closed and his hair is matted with even more blood.
The sirens come closer until I see an ambulance, fire engine, and police cars. They get to me first am put me gently on a stretcher. I am put in the back of the ambulance for further examination. The paramedic that works on me tells me everything is going to be alright. She puts a neck brace on my neck and lies me down. As the doors shut behind me I can see someone putting a sheet over Lane. The last thing I hear is one policeman talking to the other that he was probably killed instantly when he was thrown from the vehicle. I fall into unconsciousness.