There was silence then the hiss of heat rising against the sharp morning air. Blood on the windshield. Smoke coils up through the branches of the old tree. A spirit has faded from our midst. There are sirens. Uniformed men approach with caution. The car windows are smashed and all the while there are words of reassurance to the passengers, who have sadly already left the trauma scene. Paramedic arrive, their efforts are futile. A blood stained cuff trims a lame hand dangling off the stretcher. We know he is dead.

I imagine he was high, speeding through this little city's streets, the police hot on his tail, his hands clenching the steering wheel, his boot jammed down on the accelerator...Imagining he could actually get away unscathed. The small streets now a motorway. The police are chasing a stolen vehicle with a madman behind the wheel.

The car smashed into a taxi, a traffic light and veered off the road and into the trunk of the old tree.

Then there was that silence.
Two men pronounced dead at the scene.

Birds twitter somewhere high up in the branches of the tree.

I can taste blood in my mouth and I realize witnessing this I'll never be the same.

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