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A Collision with the Past

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You didn’t know what force made you take the “scenic” route on your way home. Maybe it was for the peace of mind or the quiet. Maybe it was for the isolation. Maybe it was to get away from the hand of anxiety clutching your throat. Lately you have been itching to get away, to step back from the stressors weighing you down. It was a bit ironic that the only way to make you feel better was to partake in the source of your problems, but dealing with your haunting past had to begin with confronting it head on. You shook your head; perhaps that term wasn’t the best choice of words. Taking a slow, deep breath, your slender fingers painted with carefully designed scars clenched the steering wheel two times as you continued to drive down the empty road. There was a good amount of time left before you would reach your cracked driveway, but the length did not bother you at all. In fact, you embraced the long separation from society. Feeling a sense of calm being completely alone in the dead of night, you turned on the radio to enjoy a bit of ambiance; however, nothing but static filled the space of your car.
“Must be the signal,” You mused, playing with the dial before shutting it off and shrugging off the strange occurrence. Silence was the second best option.
The instinctual urge to reposition the already perfect mirror propelled your fingers to gingerly push and pull the reflective object. You trained your eyes on the dark environment zooming behind through the small rectangle. Squinting, you tried to identify a foreign shape filling the back space of your car. With wide eyes your body tensed at the sight of a black figure lurking a few feet behind you. The vehicle swerved as you screamed a high-pitched shriek, almost propelling you off the road. You looked back at the mirror with a growing fear in the pit of your stomach, but the figure was gone. It vanished.
Continuing to drive down the straight road, you force your tense body to relax into the cut leather of the driver’s seat, the cut leather that reminded you of that day. Your fingers twitched against the wheel as you sporadically exhaled, “It was probably my imagination. I guess I’m just too tired to-”
The figure reappeared on the asphalt in front of your car, and you screamed, jerking the steering wheel sharply to the left to avoid him. Not again. It couldn’t happen to you again. The car swerved off the dirt road and sputtered to a stop in the tall grass. You checked your body for injuries. Luckily, nothing happened save the near cardiac arrest the event gave you.
The night remained silent as you struggled to regain your breath and your sanity. That man seemed familiar, dreadfully familiar. Your brain pounded from the experience, and you lurched forward with a cry. It couldn’t be. That day you wanted to forget flashed from the depths of your memories. Your scars burned with an agonizing flare. Reaching for your keys in the ignition, you prepared yourself for the rest of your journey.
“Everything is okay. You’re just freaking yourself out.”
You took a deep breath one last time after the engine broke the serene silence of the darkness. Only an hour left until you would be home. The image of the couch and your favorite blanket relaxed you, but the fantasy was violently destroyed as a rough hand caked in blood grabbed your neck. His grasp sent shards of broken glass through your skin, and the painful crack of fragile bones echoed in your ears. Your screams came out as sputtered breaths, confined to the small space of the vehicle. Thick black engulfed your vision, and the last thing you saw was the figure of your hit and run victim smirking at you from the passenger seat.






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