The Disaster That Brought Me To Phoenix – Part 1
by Stan Collins
I regained consciousness in a puddle of my own blood. I could see out of only my right eye and I feared for the worst. “Where the hell am I?” I was in a daze but managed to stand myself up while dripping blood into the makeshift bowl that I made with my hands. Through one blood-drenched eye, I looked around. There was a lamp with a dull red light on next to me, otherwise, the room was completely dark. I looked up at an unusually high ceiling and began to regain the ability to think clearly. I realized that I was in my bedroom. I made my way towards the exit and, upon opening the door, was blinded further by the bright afternoon sunlight that poured in through the wall of windows to my immediate right.
The pain from my unidentified wound began to make its presence known. I staggered forth and turned to a mirror on the wall and froze in disbelief. It took a moment or two to comprehend the sight in front of me. Blood spewed from a point near my left eye in continuous eruptions. Half of my face and all of my partially removed shirt and bare chest was coated in fresh layers of the dark crimson liquid. It was the most terrifying scene I’d ever experienced. The combination of this horrific view of my mangled face and the growing pounding pain that emanated from my skull caused me to lose it. Consumed with agony, I let out an uncontrollable roar. Suddenly, my mind was racing. How did this happen? Am I dying? What do I do now?
Just then, I heard footsteps quickly descending the stairs behind me and to the left. I looked down at the pool of blood in my palms and realized that I was most likely at a disadvantage in whatever danger drew near. Nonetheless, I prepared myself for the worse and turned to face my opponent. In the seconds that followed, I put together both an attack and an escape plan. Fortunately, I needed neither as the advancing steps belonged to my father. The wave of relief that washed over me did nothing to ease the pain and in the next few minutes, I was in the passenger seat of a truck on the way to the emergency room.
In an effort to stay conscious, I began to piece together the events that led up to this moment to the best of my abilities. This was no easy task. Incomplete images of the night prior flashed through my head. In what I assumed was no particular order, I saw a car wreck, a girl, a party, a laptop. None of it made any sense. “Think. Think!” I pleaded with myself. I winced in pain with each notch in the road. Every subtle and abrupt movement of the vehicle tested my ability to keep my composure. After some frustrating moments, the reality of what had transpired started to become clear. I had destroyed a car that I couldn’t pay for, I had made a promise that I couldn’t keep, and I had locked myself in a position that I would not be able to escape.
Suddenly, the stream of blood flowing from a wound in my head didn’t seem so bad. It was undoubtedly the most pressing issue but it would soon prove to be the least of my problems. I found it easier to think backward to recall what happened. Starting with this morning, I began to remember waking up in my bed but fully dressed, taking one step, and then blacking out. Presumably, when I lost consciousness, I fell face forward into a glass desk. The desk remained intact but I was broken. The fact that I still had on my clothes from the night before implied that I probably drank to excess and passed out. With that being said, I had a feeling that the drinking was not for fun but rather a result of some affliction.