There was no sound. Everything seemed to be rapt in absolute silence.Things were a bit blurry, but Dwayne was able to make out large, fuzzy shapes. Were they trucks? Yes, it seemed so. Large trucks drove by slowly.
A blurry boot stepped across and something tugged at his hair. It was a man in a uniform. He made a disgusted face and then darkness enveloped everything with a faint smell of plastic.
Dwayne woke suddenly. It was only a dream! His heart raced and sweat trickled down his face.
Then he realized, too late, that he was behind a steering wheel.
He panicked and then jerked the wheel violently to avoid a stopped vehicle in front of him.
For a split second, hundreds of thoughts coursed through his mind. How did I get here? Why am I driving? Why am I not wearing a seatbelt? Why am I in my underwear?
His stomach dropped as he saw a large truck barreling towards him. A moment ago, he had overcorrected and had swerved into the oncoming lane. Now he was face-to-face with a monstrous diesel truck with MACK in its grill.
A loud horn blared and startled him awake.
Again, he was behind a steering wheel. Again, he jerked it to avoid a car that had stopped in front of him. Again, he was in the path of a massive barreling truck.
This time, however, there was a true impact.
His tiny car was sent spinning toward the edge of the road. He semi-consciously tried to steer his way out of the violent spin, yet his arms would not react properly. He had realized that he had been leaning against the door just as it opened, sending him towards a guardrail.
With a violent ‘clang’ he finally settled silently on the gravely shoulder of the highway.
He felt very cold.
His eyes darted from left to right. His mind was swimming. Had I been sleepwalking again? Why can’t I move? Why am I so cold? How am I so low to the ground and yet my view remains upright? Was I in an accident? I want to go home!
His eyes caught something in his peripheral view. It was a bloody, beheaded and shirtless body, draped over a guardrail – his body.
Slowly, his senses dulled as terror began to settle in.
He could vaguely make out the sound of shouting men who lit road flares and wore orange vests over their black uniforms. An ambulance pulled into view. Radio squelches and sirens combined and then dulled away.
His hearing faded almost entirely. He could only hear slight thumps (doors closing? Guns firing?) and what sounded like flowing water (a river? Blood? A river of blood?). They were strange ambient sounds that he was not accustomed to hearing.
They were frightening.
His eye-sight began to fail. The edges of his sight blackened and threatened to close out all light as the darkness crept slowly over everything. He could see vague, gray, blurry images of vehicles as they passed very slowly.
A man passed with a black plastic bag and then stepped out of view.
An angry looking man (a policeman?) looked as if he shouted at rubber-neckers and directed them to move on. What could they be looking at, thought Dwayne, me? Are they looking at me?
Then a black boot stepped into view. Something tugged at Dwayne’s hair and he seemed to feel a sudden floating sensation. The man that had passed Dwayne earlier, the one who carried the plastic bag, made eye contact with Dwayne and then snarled with a disgusted expression.
Then Dwayne’s eyesight must have failed. A coolness slipped over his head and everything went black. He smelled the faint traces of plastic just before his consciousness faded and he slipped into oblivion.
Copyright: © 2009 Brian Barnett
Brian Barnett lives with his wife, Stephanie, and son, Michael, in Frankfort, Kentucky. To date, he has published over thirty-five stories since he began publishing in November 2008. He has been published by MicroHorror.com, Static Movement, The Monsters Next Door, Sonar4 Ezine, Blood Moon Rising, Flashshot, Flashes in the Dark, Dark Fire Fiction, Burst Fiction, The Daily Tourniquet, Yellow Mama, The Lesser Flamingo, and The Short Humour Site.