Meet Guest Blogger and Short Story Writer E.B. Jones. He is a native Texan, a musician, and in the process of writing his first novel. I hope to feature his short stories here as often as he chooses to submit them. Hope you enjoy!
The first thing I noticed whenever I looked down next to me was my guts strewn all over the place. Shades of red reflected in the moonlight and went out from my midsection in all different directions. I didn’t really feel anything substantial until I saw my daddy’s 68 Chevy Nova wrapped around the only damn oak tree within two miles on that stretch of highway we’d been cruising. The first thing that went through my head was that my dad was going to kill me. I could still hear .38 Special playing on the cassette deck.
I wasn’t wearing my seat belt and, from the giant hole in the windshield, I figure I had flown through it once we hit. Looking at the mangled wreckage, I was probably better off than if I’d stayed in the car.
I twisted my head around to see if Johnny was anywhere but I couldn’t see him and I wondered if he was laying out in some other part of the field staring at his guts like I was.
We’d been celebrating our high school graduation and had spent most of the night drinking beer and trying to get laid. We had one last summer here in Hickory Flats and we were going to make the best of it and then get the hell out of Dodge for good.
Whenever finding a girl here in town didn’t pan out for either of us, we decided to go for a joy ride and see what kind of hell we could raise. Thought there might be a party over in one of the neighboring towns we could crash and find some girls there.
It was about one-thirty in the morning whenever we went around Devils Bend and I guess we took the curve too fast cause I ended up losing control of the car. It was right about the time Johnny started screaming out profanities and just as soon as I heard him scream “oh shit” we hit the tree. Then everything just kind of went white and the next thing I know I was laying in a field staring at my intestines wrapped around some bull nettles.
I thought about how I hadn’t paid much attention in biology class back whenever we’d gone over the human anatomy and wondered that maybe if I had, I might have known where everything went. Then maybe I could have shoved all my insides back in their proper location and gotten up and gone along my merry way.
I tried to move a little to see if maybe I could crawl back up to the car and see if Johnny was all crinkled up kissing the dashboard or not, but my body wasn’t letting me do much but just sit there and wait to die.
I starting thinking about all the plans we had made and how we were going to have one hell of a summer drinking, floating the river, partying and just causing a ruckus all over Hickory Flats. Then come August, we’d be gone like ghosts of Christmas past.
We’d both been accepted to UNT in Denton, which was a few hours from here, but it was far enough to not be here. We had it all figured out. First we’d party our way through college, both of us probably joining some fraternity and doing it up right. Get lots of women along the way. Then once we finished up, he was going to go on and become a famous doctor and cure cancer or something and I was going to fight international crime for the CIA. I really hoped that he had somehow gotten out so that once he started practicing medicine he could stitch up the dumb asses like me that don’t buckle their seat belts but don’t actually want to die.
I heard some crickets chirping and a frog sending out its mating call and thought about the time that I’d heard from someone that most people die within ten miles of where they were born and I guess that was going to be true of me. We weren’t even three miles from the old hospital. I guess this is what I got for running over that preacher’s kid a few years back and being too scared to stop or ever fess up to it.
The tape ended long before I heard the sirens or saw the fire trucks and ambulances pull up. A couple of guys ran over to the car and I heard them say something about a body and I knew that Johnny didn’t make it. I guess they didn’t notice me on account of how far I’d been thrown from the car so I just decided to lay back and look at the stars while I waited for them to find me.
The night sky was clear and black and all the stars were out shining. The sky looked like someone had spilled milk across it and I wondered if there was any kind of intelligent life out there. I wondered what they thought of us and I wondered if they had seat belts on those flying saucers of theirs or not.