Lola floated, suspended in air. Why was she floating? Was she experiencing an out-of-body thing? Her senses were dull and her brain seemed detached. Was she dying? There was no lighted tunnel to speak of, and it was as if light and dark both worked in conjunction for control of her eyes, simultaneously. Truth be told, it gave Lola a headache. She was lost, somehow, floating to nowhere in particular. Where was she going? What the hell was happening?
Oh, the SUV. Of course! She remembered the headlights bearing down on her, the grill, remembered the impact with it.
But there was no pain, just a heaviness in her chest. Maybe it was just a glancing blow? Was it possible to simply get “Nicked” by an oncoming SUV? She didn't know; her head didn't seem to work. It floated on a different plane than her body. Why was she floating, anyway? How did she end up in water? There was no river in the middle of 52nd Street.
Focusing was difficult too, as if her head was unable – or unwilling – to go beyond the rhythm and sway of her journey. But her family popped into her head then, old and faded memories: her mother's violet eyes, her father's crooked half-smile. She didn't know much of her little brother, as she had left home when he was still a newborn, and yet thoughts of never seeing him again brought a palpable heaviness to her heart, the icy cold of despair. She wondered if they would allow her to cry in the Afterlife, just a bit, to mourn her poor family's stolen happiness as they grieved for her. Grief she probably didn't deserve when she abandoned them. But still, the tears came, and their sheer weight burdened her soul mightily. She felt the compression in her chest grow.
And then the dark lifted and she could see herself. It WAS an out-of-body-experience, she knew it! But her eyes didn't work right, and everything was blurry. The first thing she noticed was the explanation of the weight on her chest: there were about five heavy blankets covering her, and she could feel their weight, even in death. She must have been a grisly sight for them to use so many blankets to cover her. They were being administered to her corpse by a young man wearing blue overalls. Like a mechanic? What a strange thought.; why would a mechanic be placing blankets over her maimed body? And why did this mechanic fellow have a stethoscope attached to his ears?
Oh, a paramedic.
That would explain the floating sensation, too: she was in the back of an ambulance. She heard no siren, but the souped-up suspension gave a smooth ride.
Her muddled brain also figured out why her vision was wonky. It wasn't because she was she was caught between two planes of existence, it was because she was watching the scene inside the ambulance unfold in the reflection of some highly polished chrome or aluminum.
It was enough to make her head spin.
And spin some more – oh God, she was gonna puke! She saw her prone body roll to its side and open its mouth before regurgitating all the accumulated contents of her stomach from the last eight hours – mostly alcohol – all over the mechanic/paramedic at her side. She heard him cry out (and probably swear) but consciousness was a fleeting thing for Lola, and it slipped away like water through her fingers.
Before darkness took over once again, perhaps for the final time, one lone bit of stimuli stuck in her brain: there was a man right next to her, right behind the vomit-covered paramedic.