Friday, June 4, 2010

Dream Blogfest!!!!!!!

Okay so here is my late post for the Dream scene blogfest. Background, this is more of a flashback/PTSD moment for Darren from He's With Me. So here we go, comments as always are appreciated. Don't hold back, I can take it. Oh an also though it sounds improbable I've done research and his injuries are plausible and his actions are possible. You've got to read the rest of it to understand, but basically he was in shock, thus he was able to do what he did. Also this takes place over a span of a few minutes, just so you know.

Oh and I'm not sure how I feel about it because I just wrote it today, so tomorrow there may have been some changes made, once I've slept on it.

And now we dream:


It always started the same. The morning light poured through the bus windows, bouncing off the metal walls creating a glare in everyone’s eyes.

No one knew what was about to happen.

The stench of hockey gear hung in the air, so they'd cracked all the windows, and blasted the heat trying to counter the winter’s chill as it climbed in through the open spaces.

Darren knew something was wrong, but he couldn't put a finger on what it was. Something was going to happen, he could feel it, but why couldn't he remember?

And then, just like always, it was bright; so very, very bright.


It happened in an instant, flying through the air, spinning being tossed around. Then the movement stopped and he landed hard.

All he could see was red. Blood flowed over his fingers, clinging to his skin and sticking in the cuticles of his nails. An aching pain started to spread through him originating at his knees before reverberating off every bone in his body. He shook from agony, and reached up to wipe the blood from his face, but his hand fell short and he didn’t know why. He glanced down to see why. His left hand was completely gone, his arm cut off at the elbow. Only one of his legs was intact; the other, his right leg, was a bloody mess, his femur had sliced through his skin and was facing away from him, ripping through his shorts. His stomach rolled and the world spun around him, tears of horror filled his eyes- he was going to be sick.

He looked up then, anything to distract him to push the nausea away, his frightened green eyes darting around for the first time. It looked like the bus had been split in half; broken glass lay everywhere and the back of the bus had been completely obliterated the metal torn to shreds. Seats were thrown every which way, strewn across the pavement where he lay; a violent road burn crept across every inch of his exposed skin, scarring his body. He was outside the yellow metal of the bus, but so were row upon row of destroyed seats. Bodies were sticking up across the asphalt field of death at odd angles.

Some were moving, some weren't.

Darren screamed. His voice lost, smothered by the other boys moans. Just as soon as he opened his mouth he closed it, resigning himself to silence, there was no use in screaming. His voice was just one of many blending into wails of agony.

The pain started to dull, a light airy feeling passing over him, and he started to panic. He could feel his own heartbeat escalating feel as it jumped into his throat and caused his breaths to come in shallow gasps. He was fifteen he couldn’t die; not now not yet. He was just fifteen! His body screamed at him to focus, to think of something, anything to stay lucid…

Then he remembered.

It was happening again, how could it be happening again?


Where was Liam? He scrambled forwards, using his intact hand to propel himself across the scattered leather remnants of the bus seats, into the aisle. A piece of bus teetered above him, the leg of an overturned seat. It fell. There was a crack as it landed on his back, spasms of pain spread from the point of impact across his side wrapping themselves around his chest cavity and squeezing. A grunt of pain escaped his lips but it would take too much energy to cry out, energy he didn’t have. He couldn’t even call out to Liam worried he’d pass out from the strain. Everyone else had the energy, somehow; he could hear their shouts for help, screams for their mothers.

He reached out to where his best friend had been, shoving the chair leg away with his good hand before pulling himself around the bend. And there was Liam, lying in a pool of blood, twitching tiny moans escaping his lips. Using what was left of his strength, he propelled himself forwards as best he could, landing next to Liam with a thud, the pain in his chest growing tighter. He couldn't breath.

“Dar-ren…” his name was broken; Liam choked it out struggling to catch his breath. Darren saw it then, the blood pouring from his best friend throat. A cut an inch wide was pulsing in tune with Liam’s pounding heart as it let his life force drain out of him. Immediately Darren reached over, his hand clutching at the gash firmly trying with all his might to hold it closed. But the world was blurring, the numbness spreading, he couldn't feel his chest anymore and he’d almost forgotten his leg was being held in place by a thread, could only remember his hand wasn’t there because he couldn’t use it.

“Darren…” Liam gasped “don’t…let go, please…and tell Leah…” he coughed, blood spotting the corners of his mouth, dyeing his teeth red.

“I’m sorry.” Liam coughed again, blood spattering across Darren’s face. Darren nodded, just once. The world blurred, the screams faded, his grasp loosened and the blood was free to flow.

Darren was standing over his own body now, watching as his hand let go, and Liam's eye rolled back into his head. He just stood there, watching as he let his friend die, as he gave into the numbness, listening to the sirens as they penetrated the dying moans of the other boys. The other voices became faint, and the edges of the world began to dull, Liam inhaled once, and then was gone. And Darren just lay there, unmoving.

“Liam!” Darren awoke screaming, his hands shaking like they had when he’d let go of Liam’s wound. He threw his covers off, glancing down at his legs at the large white scar that stretched up his right thigh, a constant reminder. His left hand shook slightly with the memory of its ultimate failure. His right hand hadn’t been strong enough to hold the wound closed, if his left hand had been there then maybe Liam wouldn’t have died. The scar around his elbow cast off the same ashen glow as the one on his thigh. The scars were composed of thick bumps and dips that wound across his skin in intricate designs, like large pieces of rope holding him together; permanent fixtures on his body. He'd gotten his arm reattached, or replanted as the doctors said. It had been what his step mother called a miracle. Not enough of a miracle though because Liam hadn't been so lucky.

The scars would never let him forget that he’d let his best friend die.


And the verdict is?


drea moore said...

I really like the suspense here :D I think you have done a good job conveying your character's mental strain.

M. Bail said...

Very intense! Well done.

Kris & Kels said...

wow. this is so sad and sweet and strong and open and...intense. Love it.

<3 Kelsey Leigh

Roland D. Yeomans said...

The world may forgive us, but our dreams never will. You ensnared me and kept me right there in the moment. Bravo! Roland

Anonymous said...

Other than needing some light editing, this was very well done. It kept me enthralled. ;-)

Eric W. Trant said...

Absolutely GRUESOME!

I like gruesome. All the more intense because it was not a dream but a flashback. Makes you appreciate those people with chopped limbs from car accidents...

- Eric

Charity Bradford said...

Oh, how sad. To relive that moment over and over and feel guilt for something he really didn't have control over.

This pulled me in and I forgot I was reading a dream. Nice! Great descriptions.

sarahjayne smythe said...

Sad and intense, this makes for an excellent blogfest entry.

Dawn Embers said...

Intense. Very intense and the dream is distorting in a way. Confusing but in the good way.

AshleyTenille said...

Great scene! I love how vivid it is and your descriptive voice. Well done :)

Amalia T. said...

really gripping scene! Gruesome and terrifying. I like this line: “Dar-ren…” his name was broken;

I think it really echoes the fact that Darren himself is broken, both in the dream, physically, and in the present from survivor's guilt.

thanks for participating!!

Iapetus999 said...

Very intense.
It's all telling, tho (you said don't hold back).
It's like someone describing the scene from outside it.
Things like "All he could feel was", "it would do him no good" take me out of the scene and wonder who's talking.
Clip all that extraneous commentary and stick with his experience from his eyes.
If you do this you can turn up the intensity 100%.
Another nit...if his leg was severed at the femur, he would die in minutes from the blood loss from the femoral artery. It's a huge artery and unless it was somehow cauterize by the explosion (which would then have to burn him to death) he's not going to survive this. Read "Black Hawk Down" for a a great example of this.
You could get around this by simply fracturing the leg instead of severing it...then the artery could stay intact.
Interesting excerpt!

Tom Kepler said...

For me, the description of the scars was particularly strong. Your accurate description yet the use of connotation prepared the reader for the ending of the sequence.

Lapetuss's observations on the wounds are good. Could you find a way for the scars to exist without such extreme injury?

EJ Fechenda said...

So, I'm reading this and really getting into the detail. The most distracting part is I kept thinking: "she's only 17!" You have talent! :)

There are some minor editing details and I agree with the other comments (for the most part), but overall your writing is solid. Great dream sequence...very sad, vivid and horrifying.

E. Arroyo said...

Wow, I agree with the intensity of the scene. Great job!

Hayley said...

Drea- Thank you.

M. Bali- Thanks!

Kelsey- Thanks :)

Roland- Thank you

Sharon- Thanks, and I've never been good at editing for the little things so I'll keep an eye out, thank you.

Eric- Yeah, reattachment surgery is quite a feat, and thank you.

Charity- Thank you, your reaction was exactly what I was going for.

Sarahjayne- Thank you ^__^

Dawn- Thank you, and I'll work on the confusing bit.

Ashley- Thank you :)

Amalia- Thank you for hosting such an amazing fest, and for your feedback. Thank you ^__^

Lapetus999- Thank you for not holding back, I really appreciate it! I've already made some of the suggested changes, you were right on the money, they made it tighter and more intense. Also I took your advice with fracturing his leg instead. Thank you for your honesty and critique it was very helpful!

Tom- I'm glad you liked the scars description and I made all the changes Lapetus suggested. Thank you for the feedback!

EJ- *blushes* thank you so much, I've never been good at editing my own stuff but I'm always open to suggestions that you so very much for your kind words!

Hayley said...

E. Arroyo- Thank you!

Donna Hole said...

Vivid, intense. What awful guilt. And such a ghastly scene. You wrote it well.


Hayley said...

Donna- Thank you very much!

Valerie said...

Dang it, the problem with commenting after everyone else is they've already used up words like "intense," which is easily the best way to describe this. I agree with what Iapetus said about making this a bit more immediate; minor tweaking should handle it nicely. Reminded me of the opening of Lost, old as that might be now. Nice work.

Hayley said...

Valerie- Thank you so much! And I totally understand commenting last it's never any fun.