One day. One moment. She was just in the wrong place at the wrong time, but what she saw on that day will haunt her forever...
Cautiously, I left the reassuring comfort of my own car and drew closer to the broken wreck of smouldering metal, contorted grotesquely around a withering oak tree. All around me was devastation, disaster and destruction. As the pungent
smell of burnt ash flooded my nostrils my heart stopped dead in my chest. Eager flames licked hungrily at the bonnet of the car, a large people carrier, which was stripped of metallic paint and blackened like a rotten tooth. The bright orange hues of the blaze lit the darkness of the night and I stared in disbelief at the sight that stretched out before me. The ruined mass of metal debris sat in the middle of the disfigured landscape. Its engine disgorged a mass of jet-black steam, and the greasy, paint-like taste of fuel filled my mouth. One wheel of the car was now detached and deflated, lying by the side of the deserted road, and a door had been ripped violently off its hinges, allowing me to see the wrecked interior. The steering wheel had buckled under the pressure of the accident, and was twisted lifelessly around the dashboard. The air bag had been ripped, and was sagging sadly on the battered leather seats, which were covered with a thick veil of soot.
The ground was strewn with baby items: a forlorn toy duck, its once downy material now matted with brick-red earth, dummies, nappies and bottles, and a pale yellow Babygro decorated with grinning teddy bears, blissfully unaware of the
horror that surrounded them. A tartan picnic blanket and a wicker basket containing a vacuum flask and some Tupperware containers also littered
the floor. The lone tree trunk that had taken the car’s impact was now hunched
awkwardly over the crash site, its mossy branches paralysed around the ruins. The car suddenly gave a dejected groan, a grief-stricken soul in mourning, and the echo
of the ensuing creak! lingered in the still, cool night air.