Short 'n' Curly is a free ebook collection of short stories, prose and poetry, sometimes dark and confronting.
Excerpt from Debbie:
The air is sticky; the heat is so arid that it dries out your mouth when you speak making you instantly parched and needing water. We walk down the street hand in hand staring in through windows, stepping inside some of the second hand stores along the way, we stop for the walk sign to change, gulping the drinks we picked up, hands drop out of reach, I bend down and tie up my shoelace. The lights change and the beep, beep, beep of the crossing ticks away. You were slightly ahead of me, just a few steps away, but in the crossing. Then it happened. In the fleeting glance of a moment a whole world can change. I stood there frozen unable to speak, shout or yell, like a shadow. Everything happened so fast, the screech of brakes, the thud, your scream, and the wheels squealing as the driver fled. The impact left you bloody and limp and time moved slowly between my leaving the curb and reaching you. I slumped down on the road next to you and yelled at the people coming to help us to call an ambulance. I placed my right hand on yours; I could feel the gravel rash burn; I placed your head in my lap and told you, "You'll be all right, to just hold on to me it will be fine." You looked at me and shook your head.
I heard no sirens. Voices telling me to "Move out of the way" told me they'd arrived; I was somewhere else in my mind, holding you, refusing to believe what I knew as truth. They pried my hands from yours, they placed you on a board and shoved tubes into your left hand, a neck brace was put around your neck and they lifted you onto the gurney. One of them looked at me and said: "You'll have to follow us there", there was no room for me, only you. "Where are you taking her?" they looked at me and kept talking to themselves. "Where the **** are you taking her?" "RPA." came the reply. I looked around and couldn't comprehend how to get there, I looked at my clothes and I had blood on my pants leg and shirt, no cab was going to pick me up. I followed them as they headed for the ambulance and after they had you inside I pushed and shoved my way inside knowing that regardless of what they said, there was room. There was some banter about not being able to take me and I looked at the youngest of the Ambo's and said "Do you think a cab will pick me up." He looked at his buddy and said to "Leave it be." The doors closed, I looked at you, you were hooked up to drips and tubes; I listened to you breath, so weak, so shallow. The siren churned.
We were there and you were raced out of the ambulance. The nurse nodded at the Ambo as they wheeled you inside, as they left she turned and told me to wait outside. A Doctor appeared running and bumped my left shoulder as he headed for you. "Out of the way" they shouted at me as through the swinging doors she ran, I ignored them all and followed you inside. The room was pristine, so white that it appeared to glow, your blood dripped onto the floor and swabs, tubes and pieces of your clothes were thrown down as well making the room look like a battle field. Doctor's moving about you to the frantic beat of trying to defeat death and you so very still. "Pupils fixed and dilated, right eye is shot, left leg is probably fractured below the knee and her respiration is thready. She appears to be bleeding internally, probably her liver. Multiple trauma to the lower abdomen" A nurse walked over and told me "To please wait outside." "I'm her partner." "Miss wait outside" the words cold and stern. "Didn't you hear me I'm her partner and I'm not going anywhere!"
"We're losing her." Echoed through the room and I felt my heart sink as I stood silently watching at the far end of the room as the machine heralded your leaving, I sank to the floor. "Charge, Ok, Clear" the command was barked; a repeated phrase well rehearsed, your body jolted. Again the words "Charge, clear." I knew you were gone even though they tried to fight it, and after a few more attempts they confirmed my belief. No one spoke to me, they all left as they came, running, and I slid over to you and held your hand and cried.