A few moments later, a knock came to the door. She had cleared her eyes and tried to put on a smile, but the man who walked through the door was wearing a uniform and did not look happy.
"Hello, m'am. I am officer Fredricks. I need to talk to you about the car accident you were involved in last night."
As he finished, Chaz appeared in the doorway. "Is it ok for me to come in?"
"Yes, please. He can stay, right? I'd like for him to be here..." Christine started to cry again as she felt like she was pleading for the officer's permission.
"Uh, that is just fine, m'am. I pulled your driver's licence..." As Officer Fredricks confirmed her contact information and vehicle and insruance information, Chaz sat on the other side of Christine's bed and held her right hand tightly, gently massaging her fingers.
"Ok, Miss Jennings, what caused you to veer off the interstate?"
"I don't know, I just steered off the side of the road."
"So no other car was involved. No one else swerved or cut you off or anything?"
"No, I don't think so."
"M'am, when you went off the side of the road, it appears that your car flipped before landing on it's top on the sidewalk below. Do you remember this?"
"No, I just remember hitting the siding and then I woke up laying on the road with Tim next to me until the ambulance came." So far she was remaining calm, but felt extremely nervous. Why did all of this seem so intense and scary? She was fine and it was just a car crash.
"Miss, you should be aware that there were several pedestrians in the area that your car landed. It appears that a piece of your vehicle came off and struck a young man. He is also being treated here at the hospital. Two other gentleman were nearby and called the ambulance. We are waiting to see how the man who was struck is doing. Are yo usure that there were not any other vehicles or factors involved before you off the road?"
Christine felt like her heart had stopped. If she were in a calmer mood, she would realize that what she was experiencing was a panic attack. Chaz, next to her, was still holding her right hand and now put his other hand on her shoulder.
"No," she replied, almost too quietly, her face starting to turn pale. "There was nothing else... just me. I did it. I did this... Oh my God..." Looking blankly at Chaz, she brushed his hand off her shoulder and withdrew her hand from his. She curled up on her right side and stared at the floor next to the bed. The officer sighed heavily and looked at Chaz across the bed, who stood up with a very troubled look.
"Thank you, officer, but I think she needs to rest and process the information. Do you have a card in case we have any questions or think of anything else?"
Officer Fredricks sighed again, put his clipboard under his arm, and pulled two cards out of his wallet. "I'll be back by in a little bit. Thank you."
Chaz sat back down after the officer had left and tried to talk to Christine. "Honey, are you alright? Do you need me to get something for you? Do you want to talk to your mom?" He received no response, and after five minutes had passed without her speaking or even looking at him, he finally got up and left the room as well.
Meanwhile, Christine had tried to shut off her brain. She lay there, staring at the floor but not seeing anything. Important questions began to enter her mind, but she left them unanswered. When she felt her fiance leave the room, she closed her eyes, knowing that sleep would shut everything out, even if for only a little bit.