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Makings of a Man


D. Sekou

Chapter 1

The Accident

“Rome lookout!!!” Peaches screamed; but it was too late as their brown four door Honda civic entered the intersection. It was struck on the passenger side at the front tire by a faded blue late model pick-up truck. Four teenagers cramped into the cab forcing Rome’s car into on-coming traffic. His car was met head on by a green Lexus driven by an older gentleman. His wife was with him and two kids in the back. “Peaches!!!” was all Rome could muster pass the lump in his throat as he saw the woman he love; the mother of his son fly through the windshield. Landing on the mangled hood of their brown car; Peaches had just turned around to check on Deuce; their son, so she hadn’t had a chance to secure her seatbelt. Why didn’t the truck stop for the red light? Why didn’t her airbag deploy? Why is this happening now? Were some of the thoughts racing through Rome’s head as he saw their future together began to fade. Continuing to scream her name Rome was unable to hear Deuce lying in a twisted car seat crying. While Peaches lay motionless on the hood of the car Rome was oblivious of his surroundings. Fighting the seatbelt that held him captive, finally free he stepped out clasping to the ground examining himself he realized his leg was swollen; possibly broken. Struggling to stand, Rome did not allow his injury to still his focus as he hop around the car where Peaches lay with her eyes open looking up at Rome. Blood continued to trickle from her head. Rome grabbed her hand, shaking his head, all he could say was, “no, No, NO!!!”

Just then an eyewitness put their arm around his shoulder and whispered in his ear “it’s going to be okay” help is on the way. They encouraged him to check on Deuce, being brought back to the reality; Rome hopped to the backseat in the antifreeze and water leaking from the pickup truck. With each hop he heard a low splash as the discolored liquid stained his shoes. Deuce was crying, so Rome looked him over, noticing no evidence of physical injury. Like any loving and caring parent he picked him up and began consoling him. They hopped back to Peaches noticing her fingers twitching; Rome raced her hand to his lips and began kissing it, pleading for her to hold on.

The paramedics arrived; in what seemed like 2 hours. His life continuing to flashing before his eyes and everything moving so fast Rome was unable to keep track of time. It was actually under 15 minutes. Finally, taking full notice of the scene; ironically he still had the green light. The north and south flowing traffic was now reduced to one lane. Traffic flowing from the east was at a standstill. It appears the family involved was the luckiest as they only had minor injuries. As for the teens, one hit their head on the windshield cracking it, leaving a circle of blood. Two passengers were actually in the rear of the truck, one who was lucky as their back was against the cab, and the other was thrown from the truck landing beside the car Rome hit head on.

Arriving at the hospital, Deuce checked out fine; however, when they were placing Rome’s leg in a cast, he made sure Deuce was within his reach. As for Peaches, she was placed in ICU after coming out of a promising surgery. Rome was given the news that she had a mild concussion, without any swelling. A broken collar bone, a crack jaw bone, other bruises and scratches. Rome called family to come to the hospital to be with them he sat in the chair next to Peaches bed with Deuce in his arm. The nurses offered to put Deuce in daycare; however, a this point Rome wasn’t going to let him out of his sight. While holding Peaches hand, he began to reflect on his 22 years of life.

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