The sickening crunch-thud of metal on metal startled William out of his reverie, but not in time to avoid running his Camry, albeit gently, into the bumper of the blue Saab in front of him. He slammed on his brakes, of course, but whacked the Saab nonetheless. The Saab was available to be whacked by virtue of its having been plowed into on its front passenger side by the world’s largest and most ancient Cadillac, thus producing the sound which had, however belatedly, alerted William.
He sat for a moment in his stalled Camry, heart pounding, and assessed the situation. The driver of the Saab was getting out, slowly. She was a young woman, with blond hair, blue jeans, and big sunglasses. She walked around to the front of her car, peered at the point of connection, and then stood looking at the Cadillac, which was lodged firmly into the entire right front end of her car. The impact had pushed the Saab into the opposite lane, and cars coming from that direction were now stopped, unable to get around.
The woman went back to the door of her car and leaned against the roof, gazing into the interior of the car. William climbed out of his Camry to see if she needed help. As he approached, he noticed she was hyperventilating.
"Miss?" he said. "Are you OK?"
She didn't answer, but instead put her fingers into her mouth and started to retch.
"Miss?" William touched her arm. "I think maybe you're in shock."
Sunlight glinted off her sunglasses as she spun around to face him. "Fucking-A I'm in shock," she snapped. "That was a hundred and fifty dollar lipstick I just swallowed!"
Opening: Calendula.....Continuation: Anonymous