Friday, July 6, 2012

The Corner Of Vine & 85th...A Short Story

It's been kind of a crazy week so my usual Wednesday post, or my participation in Nicole's (her blog: HERE) and Carrie's (her blog: HERE) Wednesday Weekly Writing Prompt, has been put off until today. 

Once again the rules: Use the picture in the story, 500 word maximum (I stretched the limit with this story...I think I used 498 words...), there's a one-week time limit, and the story MUST contain the following randomly chosen words:


Here's what I came up with this week.

The Corner Of Vine & 85Th

            The gallery of on-lookers told Stella and her partner Charlie that they were nearing the scene of the accident as the pair maneuvered the ambulance through the busy downtown streets. Faces on the spectators said it all. They were both horrified at the scene that lay before them, but relieved to hear the blaring sound of the ambulance’s siren as it came to a stop at the corner of Vine and 85th.
            “Oh hell,” Stella groaned as the crowd parted and they spotted their victim, or what was left of him. “Looks bad.”
            “Yeah, nice way to start a shift, huh?” Charlie said as he parked the van and opened the door. The ambulance lights illuminated the trees across from where the accident took place. Clouds still hung low after depositing their liquid contents on a city in desperate need of a bath. But no amount of water could wash away the view that met these two public servants as they gathered their emergency medical kids and ran toward the single man lying at grotesque angles on the wet pavement.
            Stella reached the doomed rider first and she knew any attempts to save a life were futile. Comfort would be the sole gift she could offer this man. She knelt at his side.
            “Sir,” Stella said with a mixture of reassurance and authority. “My name is Stella Johnson. I’m an EMT with the city. Please do not try to move. We’re here to help.” Stella watched the rider’s chest under a ripped leather jacket rise and fall slowly and she heard raspy breaths emanate from the man’s cracked helmet. He couldn’t move, even if he wanted, Stella thought as blood from a compound fracture in his right leg formed a froth as it mixed with the rainwater being dragged by gravity toward the street’s storm drain.
            Charlie joined his partner and began to open his medical kit as gawkers hoped these two public officials could perform a miracle.
            “What a mess,” Charlie whispered so only Stella could hear. “Must have skidded in the rain and dumped his bike there,” Charlie said as he motioned to the curb at the other side of the street. “You can see where the bike hit the lamppost then flipped.” Charlie pointed to the mangled remains of something that was once a beautiful motorcycle. Stella could just make out what looked like a warship painted on the dented gas tank, the only thing left of the bike’s custom paint job.
            “He must have been flying,” Charlie said. “Damn shame…”
            As the two went to work, the rider tried moving his arm to his helmet. “Whoa, there,” Stella said as she stopped the man from raising the plastic shield. “Let me do that.” Stella slowly lifted the bloodied shield and saw his tired eyes. They did not meet hers, but stared off toward a light at the end of the street. Stella followed the man’s gaze and wondered if he saw what she saw.


  1. Bahhhh, what did she see? What did she see???
    Thanks for leaving me hanging... :P
    Now I'm going to be wondering for the next 10 minutes. hee hee hee. I suppose that's the sign of a good story!

    1. The plan was to include the picture of the rainbow and show that the picture used for the story is what he was looking at, but I ran out of words--probably should have made that more clear. :)

  2. I got where you were going. :) Your scene is filled with good sensory detail. I felt like I could have been one of the on-lookers. Shame about that word count.

    1. Yes, that darn work count (shaking a closed fist in the air...). But I think it does more good than harm, to be honest. It keeps things simple, concise. On to the next!

  3. Oh i totally got it!! This is so touching although sad too! I kept wanting him to live!! DON'T GO INTO THE LIGHT!!! You did this so well!

    1. I'd love to think that somehow the guy survives, but putting in that fatalistic vibe adds depth...maybe. But then so does a happy ending.

  4. You caught my attention at "ambulance" :-P I was certified as an EMT-I in Oregon many years back (didn't keep up w/ it though). My passion & interest for the work of Firefighters, Paramedics, and Police Officers remains strong to this day.

    Awesome job putting the words & pictures together

    1. Thanks so much Tena! When I read that you worked as an EMT, I was worried because (as you know...) as writers, we think we know how our characters think and act, but I've never been in that situation so I really don't know much... ;) Thanks for the kind words!