Today I am Struck

The Story

There’s a flash. So many streams of differing yellows and golds, a little white, a little blue. Oddly enough, lots of pink.

The sounds comes next, and it’s as if nature has stuffed a storm cloud into a popcorn bag.  Then uncomfortably warm, and a cackling, like angry static.

Then she’s eight again, in the back garden with her dog, and a voice calls out to her.

She’s ten and something is very wrong but all her aunts are proud. Her mother smiles. She’s cooed over and fed chocolate until she laughs.

Fourteen and her heart skips a beat over dark eyes and a roman nose.

Sixteen and that heart is only shards on a dirty sheet.

Eighteen driving fast, a skid, a bump, a nervous laugh, a kind cop.

Twenty one and dancing on a speaker, hip to hip with a sister she found in a stranger.

Twenty three and green eyes are searching back in hers. Her breath catches and-

WAIT. Who is that?

Oh no no no no no. If these are my last moments, and this is my life flashing before my eyes, he does not get to be here.

But- he was an important moment in your life, and-

AbsoLUTELY not. You passed right on by my first volleyball match and yet he gets to be here?

Well I was going to get to the volleyball.

And when were you going to get to the volleyball?

When you walked into the Olympic training facility for the first time, the day after you turn twenty-four. It impressed you.

Yes, but not as much as my first spike, which was at thirteen. That’s what got me addicted to the sport.

Sure, but I don’t think that moment is as big as some others.

Oh we include my first crush, which by the way only lasted a few weeks until I found out he thought my new haircut was stupid, but we’re going to skip over the first time I accomplished the sport that would change my life.

Look, this is my job.

Yeah, mhmm. Clearly your call.

I can’t go back now anyway. That was thirteen. We’re at twenty-three. It’s when you met-

Oh don’t you dare say his name I swear to God.

I think you’re being a bit irrational. This is what I do. I’ve seen your life, I know which of these scenes you should flash through in your last moments.

Yeah? Yeah these are going to help me on the other side of whatever?

Yep.

So these are the exact moments I need to remember who I am and where I came from?

Exactly. Now you’re getting it so-

Which is EXACTLY WHY he has no FUCKING PLACE here! He has NOTHING to do with who I am!

Well I would have to disagree.

You would, would you? You have no FREAKING CLUE who I am then.

So he didn’t effect you.

No.

Not even a bit.

Nope.

So your determination to become the best player internationally which led to your third Olympics and then to the shoulder injury and thus to your retirement and following coaching career which is how you met your current finance and his daughter has nothing to do with the fury and I’ll-show-you attitude resulting from the cheating and following heartbreak by this particular person?

…no?

I see.

Look these are clearly my last milliseconds. Can’t they just be filled with Lance and little Emmie?

That’s not how this works.

That’s not how your face works.

Excuse me?

Nothing.

Fine. May I continue now?

I don’t seem to have a choice.

Not really. I could give you over to the black abyss if you’d like but I do have some good shots of your first dance with Lance and your time coaching Emmie.

…Yes, I would like those, please. Very much.

Alright, but that means I have to get through some you-know-who memories.

Fine.

Fine?

I said fine.

Fine. Alright here we go.

Twenty three and green eyes are searching back in hers. Her breath catches and-

“Oh my God, Mia! Mia, are you alright? Baby please say something, baby please!”

You have got to be kidding me.

“Ms. Mia? Daddy why isn’t she waking up? Daddy what’s going on?!”

“Mia, PLEASE! Em get my phone- good girl, oh my god Mia.”

“Daddy is she gonna be okay?”

This is ridiculous.

“Hi hello? Yes please- send someone! I need an ambulance, a doctor, please!”

“Daddy why isn’t she waking up?”

“Yes ma’am. The southeast beach- in front of the Tower Apartments. Yes ma’am- struck by lightening. No no we’re safe the storm moved on fast. Yes we are IN A SAFE PLACE MA’AM YOU HAVE TO SEND SOMEONE NOW. Sweetie, Emmie honey I know, but you gotta be quiet I need to hear the 911 lady! Please don’t cry, it’s gonna be okay.”

Okay fine, fine, if you’re gonna bring the kid into it like that:

Mia’s eyes felt thick, heavy. Her whole body ached. Had she been running? Was this the end of her marathon? Maybe she fainted. God she hoped she crossed the line before fainting. But she couldn’t remember running. Just walking. Walking on something soft- sand. Holding a hand. A small hand. Emmie’s hand. A storm, hearing the static, pushing Emmie back towards the house-

“Mia! Oh my God, Mia! Yes ma’am, her eyes are open! Mia, baby can you hear me? It’s okay- it’s okay they’re coming. They’re coming it’s going to be okay!”

 

…well he was important. But I suppose I’ll discuss that with her another time.

The Word

Struck (verb): Past and past participle of strike. [Strike (verb): 1. Hit forcibly and deliberately with one’s hand or a weapon or other implement. 2. (of a disaster, disease, or other unwelcome phenomenon) Occur suddenly and have harmful or damaging effects on. 3. (of a thought or idea) Come into the mind of (someone) suddenly or unexpectedly. 4. (of a clock) indicate the time by sounding a chime or stroke. 5. Ignite (a match) by rubbing it briskly against an abrasive surface.

“Are you arguing with the narrator?!” -George of the Jungle (film, 1997)-

Well THAT was fun! Sometimes stories don’t have to have all this meaning and thought. Sometimes they can just be fun to write, and hopefully fun to read. Happy Sunday!