I opened my eyes. Blinding white light scythed through the gaps in my lids, burning my retinas like a molotov cocktail on a wooden door. Once my vision cleared, all I could see was a hazy white blur.
'So this is the afterlife' I thought. 'I must have been bust up worse than I thought. Why now? I had so much to live for?'
Deep in my mind a little voice added 'No you hadn't. Let's face it. You couldn't be bothered with anything, you got stinking drunk every night, and all because she left you. Was she really worth all the pain you've caused yourself? Move on James. Only it's too late for all that.'
I noticed I was lying on some soft substance on my back. I thought I'd best stand up, go in there walking. That plan lasted for about 2 seconds when my first attempt to rise sent burning shards of pain slicing through my chest, carving me apart. I cried out and sank back.
A face hurried into view.
'Don't try to move. You're in a bad way. That wall hasn't done you any favours. You've broken five ribs and you've got a fractured skull, and there's probably more damage that we haven't found. Just relax.'
'I'm alive?' said a hoarse rasping voice that I at first didn't recognise as mine.
'Well, dead men generally don't talk. We need to put you under general now to sort out the mess you've made of yourself. I felt a stab of pain as the IV needle was pushed through my flesh and into my blood vessel. As the hospital bed I was lying on was wheeled away, I watched the hospital lights as they went past overhead. Steadily they blurred and dimmed, until there was nothing.