The screech of tires, the stench of burning rubber drifting heavily through the air.

A crash.

Breaking glass.

The groaning scream of our stressed metals grinding together.

A crystal rain of the shattered windshield, sparkling, glittering, majestically falling falling inward. A sharp pain in his left ear.

A twisting motion. Rising. Now falling. To the left. A thunk and crush of flesh impacting glass.

An object approaching. Thin. Tall. Metallic.

Light post.

A blanket of white. An impact, but light. A fabric covering his face.

Another metallic wail and another, jarring impact.

Again, the soft blanket of white roughly shoved against his face.

Flying back, a hard jolt along his back

Breath gone.

A gasping ragged attempt to regain his supply of life-giving oxygen.

Another.

Another. This one slightly less ragged. Almost normal.

A deep, normal breath.

Absentmindedly grabbing for an escape.

There.

A handle.

Pull.

Push.

Step out.

A crowd.

Looking.

At him.

He shakes his head, trying to restart his troubled mind.

Something has happened. Why else would they stare? He turns.

His car.

Wrapped around a post.

He stares.

There is a gaping hole in his front left bumper. The pole his cars hood hugged was bent at an odd angle, tipped precariously by the impact.

A few dozen feet away, across the intersection, sat the other car, a fast german make. It was twisted and mangled, its metals stressed and broken. It had found a brick wall to stop against, its entire right side crushed by the impact.

A siren in the distance.

The windshield of his car was gone, collapsed inward. His left front window was dented outward, a spider web of cracks running from a crimson smear.

He felt along his left ear. A wetness.

Blood.

His.

The ear was bleeding.

His head hurt.

He needed to sit down.

He collapsed onto the nearest curb.

A police cruiser appeared, rolling to a stop to block the intersection. A man stepped out and walked over to the crowd. 'What happened here?'

Someone indicated the other car. 'He came out of nowhere, ran the red. Hit that guy right in the front left quarter panel. Spun him into the light post.'

The cop nodded, walking over to the dejected looking heap of a man on the curb. 'Are you all right, sir?'

He could only nod absent-mindedly.

The cop indicated his car.

'That airbag saved you life.'