After The Accident
Eric shivered as he woke up. Through heavy eyes, he heard the echo of raindrops falling against the roof and the rumbling of thunder overhead. Reaching down instinctively with his hands, he groped blindly for a blanket that should have been there on his bed. Instead, he felt only the wetness on the dimpled leather of his seat. Remembering where he was now, he opened his eyes and looked through the shattered windscreen.
The dim headlights of the truck and the lightning flashing overhead illuminated the wreck in the rain. From where he sat, Eric could see the full extent of the damage. The bonnet of the Cadillac has been smashed, twisted and crushed under the bumper of the opposing truck. It was close enough that he could reach out and touch the license plate. Inside what remains of the car, the dashboard had been knocked out of place, hanging at an angle diagonal to the seat. The entire front compartment had buckled in as well, pinning his legs to the ground.
“Kyla?” Eric whispered, hearing his own voice crack. The effort needed to utter a single word caused him to sputter and wheeze. He could still smell that damn whiskey on his breath. He remembered everything now, the partying, the drinking, getting drunk. Marie had been the more sober one that night, so she drove them home.
He tried to turn and face her, but his back erupted in excruciating pain. Snaking his hand along the leather seat, he passed through the gap separating the seats, until he felt the rich smoothness of her gown crumpling beneath his touch. He followed the trail of fabric until he found her dainty little fingers, and hooked his own into them one by one.
Her hand was cold to the touch, almost freezing. Yet the signs of life were there. A slight tension in the wrist, a gentle movement of the fingertips. Signs that were ever so slight, but filled Eric with the hope he needed. He tried turning again, slowly tilting his neck this time. But still his vision swirled as he almost blacked out from the pain. It took all of his focus just to stay awake.
Inch by inch, the driver side of the car came into view. And inch by inch the full extent of the horrific crash unfolded before Eric’s eyes. “Honey, can you hear me?” he whispered again, as hot tears welled up in his eyes. From the angle of the collision, Eric knew that she had swerved the car to save him, letting her side of the vehicle take the brunt of the impact.
Kyla’s head laid limp beyond the windscreen, her neck sticking out at a grotesque angle. Her brown locks were thrusted forward, spreading over what was left of the bonnet. The driver side of the vehicle had caved in on her, crushing her petite frame into her seat. The thing holding her upright, was the steering wheel lodged firmly against her chest.
Blood was everywhere, on her dress, the floor and trickling down her legs. It seeped through the light blue patterns on her dress, staining everything a sickly shade of purple. On her stomach, Eric could see the two metal shards protruding through her belly.
And he began to cry.
— END OF PART One–
Edited the story due to some gaps in the storyline. Rewrote it a bit for better flow into part two.
I’m trying to put into practice some of the finer points to writing mentioned in one of the writing guides I posted a few days ago. It took me nearly four hours of writing and rewriting for this 500 words. Wow I suck.
1. Describing action instead of using “-ly”s. Severely, jokingly, sadly, hoarsely etc. I left a few in there, when I felt like it would be too tiresome or long winded to replace them with a descriptive action. But still, I want to be mindful of them.
One example – “Kyla?” Eric whispered hoarsely to “Kyla?” Eric whispered, hearing his own voice crack. I tried to be mindful of it when I write, and it can be very frustrating at time.
2. For every paragraph, I tried to include
- Story Progress – Otherwise is there a reason why the paragraph is in there?
- Action – Describe each scene. If it is not worth describing, it is not worth putting in.
- Descriptive Reaction – What the character did via description, meaning no ‘-lys’
- Emotional Reaction/Response – If your guy punched a man, why did he punch him?
3. Shorter sentences. Less “and”, “as” and “buts”. More fullstops, less commas. I left a few long ones in there, I usually need a few read-throughs to decide if I want to keep them.