As you watch his fading silhouette, that's when you first notice the smell. Gas. You walk up to the truck and see what the guy was talking about. Gas is running down from the side of the truck, forming a puddle on the ground. In spite of the danger, though, you can't yet seem to get yourself to run off like the driver advised you to.\n\n[[Why is that?]]
The car has been crunched up to half of its original size, the trunk and the backseats now occupying the same space. The truck seems to be in better shape.\n\n[[This is wrong...]]
You panic, grab her shoulders and start shaking her violently. She shrieks in pain. You stop shaking her and your initial startlement is quickly replaced by relief. She's alive. She's moaning continuously now, though, her head hanging limp against her shoulder and you're happy to hear sirens in the distance. You stay by her side until the emergency services get there.\n\nTheir initial analysis seems to point to a neck injury. You feel a chill going down your spine. At the hospital this gets confirmed. She's alive but she's paralysed from the neck down.\n\nAfter a couple of months you wheel her out of the hospital. You could never muster up the courage to talk to anyone about what you did, least of all to her. You failed her but to her you're a hero, sticking by her, never abandoning her. You can hardly bear the adoring looks in her eyes.\n\nBack home you try to make it work. Your feelings of guilt keep building up, though, and you start hating her for loving you as she does. The more you push her away, the harder she tries. Finally, you can't handle it anymore. You mix her food with an overdose of sedatives and feed it to her. While she's slowly fading away, you grab a kitchen knife, sit down on the couch and decidedly cut your wrists. As your vision grows darker you look at her one last time and say: "I'm sorry."
You hear some more moaning coming from the car. As you move closer to investigate, you hear a door opening. You turn around and see someone exit from the truck on the driver's side. The truck's lights prevent you from getting a good look but a man's voice tells you you should get away and that the tank was damaged right before he runs off.\n\n[[What is this?]]
You carefully put two fingers on the artery in her neck. It's still warm. For a moment you don't feel anything and you start to panic. Then you feel the reassuring thump against your fingers. Again, thump. She's still alive. You feel a regular beat. You notice you've been holding your breath and breathe out.\n\nWhat next? So she's unconscious but alive. The moaning seems to indicate she's in some kind of pain. You look her over real quick and don't see anything immediately wrong with her.
Everything is dark around you. Your face feels wet.\n\n[[What's going on?]]
You open your eyes. The bright light makes you blink a couple of times. You seem to be lying in front of a car with its headlights shining in your face. You feel your head and notice you're bleeding.\n\n[[What happened?]]
You look around frantically. You remember the moaning and run around the car to the passenger side. The door is half opened and you look inside. She's there but her eyes are closed.\n\n"Annabelle?"\n\n[[There's no reaction.]]
Carefully, you get on your feet. You're still a bit unsteady but apart from your head the rest of your body seems to be okay. You walk around the car and only now do you see the truck.\n\n[[There was something else...]]
You repeat her name but louder this time.\n\n"Annabelle?"\n\nNothing.\n\n[[Check her pulse.]]\n[[Shake her.]]
It all comes back at once. You were in the car. You stopped for a minute to check the map. You heard skidding and these huge headlights came rushing in. Sounds of glass breaking and metal tearing as you get propelled through the windshield.\n\nOnly, you weren't alone in the car. Your wife was sitting next to you.\n\n[[Where is she?]]
Your heart skips a beat. Are you too late?\n\n[[Repeat your question.]]\n[[Shake her.]]
As your eyes get more accustomed to the light you notice that the windshield is shattered.\n\n[[You hear something.]]