27 Aug – Personal Stories

Aldous Huxley said your memories are your personal literature. What story are you telling yourself today?

The day started like every other day. Daniel woke up a few minutes before his alarm was due to go off. He rolled onto his back and blinked his eyes several time as his vision adjusted to the darkness of the bedroom. Continue reading

Daily Prompt – Favourite Mistake

Is there a mistake you’ve made that turned out to be a blessing — or otherwise changed your life for the better? Tell us all about it.

I’ve been sitting here for about 45 minutes, racking my brain trying to think of something actually worth writing about… and the only thing that I can think of is this one day I was late for work…

Continue reading

Daily Prompt: Twilight Zone

Ever have an experience that felt surreal, as though you’d been suddenly transported into the twilight zone, where time seemed to warp, perhaps slowing down or speeding up? Tell us all about it. If you haven’t had an experience in real life that you can draw from, write a fictional account of a surreal experience.


David was pretty much your average twenty-something kinda guy. Uni student. Girlfriend. Lived with his parents. Part time job at a fast food joint.
He loved his footy, he loved his car, he loved his friends and family just like the rest of us, and if anybody had’ve told him that his life was going to change, he would have just brushed it off as absolute nonsense.

It was the 22nd and he was walking through the carpark to his car when somebody sprang out from between two cars, startling David and making him jump. ‘Be sure to kiss your loved ones tonight, for tomorrow the world will change forever and life will never be the same’. David, naturally, just didn’t buy into what this person was saying. Judging on the way they appeared, he just assumed it was just another crazy homeless person ranting on about the end of the world and how everybody is doomed. Nothing unusual really, as people have been saying this for countless years. Society is full of people who have this it own beliefs and predictions about the end of the world, but here we are. We’re still standing and nothing has changed.

David continued walking to his car having a little laugh at the homeless guy – Moreso for the fact that he jump so much because he was caught so off-guard. He had only ever jumped like that for one thing: spiders. David hated them. Couldn’t stand them. Just the thought of them made his skin crawl so much. So tiny and furry and creepy.

David got into his car and took a moment to text his girlfriend Kara,

Hey K. Just heading hme now. Will pk u up tonite whn u finish. If I dnt show, it’s prob cos da world has ended. lol


yer. Some hmless guy said the worlds gonna end or sum shit. Whatevs. C u tnite. Luv u babe xx

u 2 xxoo

David started his car, which slightly spluttered as the motor began turning over, and he set it into reverse. He checked all his mirrors and slowly pulled out of his space. As he turned the wheel to drive off, he had just put his foot slightly on the accelerator when BANG

He quickly slammed on the brakes, and turned back to see the homeless guy leaning over the bonnet of the car with both arms stretched out ‘Are you fucking crazy? Get the fuck off my car!!’
‘Heed my warning, human. Time is running out! Tell your loved ones…’
‘GET OFF MY FUCKING CAR!!’ David screamed at the windscreen, ‘stupid cunt’ and proceeded to drive off, the homeless guy glaring at him as he slowly passed. ‘Seriously, who jumps out in front of a fucking car?! What a dumbarse! Frightened the shit outta me! And what the fuck was that about – time running out?? Pfft, what a bunch of crap!’

David pulled out of the carpark and began his journey back to his parents place. He rolled up to a set of lights, and patiently waited for the lights to turn green. For some reason they seemed to be taking quite a while, and before he knew it, there was a chorus of car horns blaring all around him. The lights had turned green, but the car at the front of the line wasn’t moving. Maybe they were having engine problems? He sat in his car and patiently waited, but soon noticed that despite all the horns, the car still hadn’t moved.

He looked around in his mirrors – nobody else was getting out of their car to offer assistance. He turned down the radio and took a moment to listen to the commotion outside. All he heard was anger and frustration, so he took off his seatbelt and got out of his car. As he walked towards the front car, he heard their horn constantly blaring, and the person in the drivers seat wasn’t moving. As he got closer to the car, he realised that there was a passenger in the car as well who also was completely still.

Maybe there was some kind of accident? Oh god, what if they’re unconscious, or seriously injured? David immediately felt overwhelmed with nerves and terror, and didn’t know what to do. As he got closer to the drivers-side door, he saw broken class, and immediately started trying to recall his first-aid training.

What do I do? Oh shit, what do I do? What the fuck? SHIT!! I need to call for help. I need a fucking ambulance!! As he turned to look into the drivers window, he realised nothing he learnt in his first-aid training prepared him for what he had just laid his eyes upon. There was a female slumped over the steering wheel. She was covered in glass, and blood and hair. There was just so much of it.

David really had no idea what to do.

M: ‘911, which service do you require?’

D: ‘I, um, fuck, I don’t know. I think she’s dead…’

M: ‘Sir, who’s dead?’

D: ‘The woman. In the car. I think she’s dead. There’s blood and glass everywhere and I don’t think she’s breathing!!’

M: ‘Sir, I’m going to need you to calm down and tell me your name.’

D: ‘David, my name is David Wright, and I’m at the intersection of King and Park in Sky Hills.’

M: ‘Okay, David, my name is Maddy. I need you to tell me exactly what has happened!’

D: ‘Maddy, I, I really don’t know. I was waiting for the lights, and the car at the front didn’t move, and everybody was on their horns, and we’d been here for about five to ten minutes. I got out of the car to check, and I found her like this. You need to send people. I need an ambulance now, like now, I don’t know what to do!!’

By this stage, David had become hysterical and wasn’t sure what was happening, or whether anything was real or if he was merely dreaming. He was doing his best not to break down in a crying heap, but he couldn’t prevent the tears pouring down his face as he stood there looking at this woman.

M: ‘David..?’

He had forgotten all of his training. He knew he should be doing something, but he didn’t know. His mind had gone completely blank with all the stress of witnessing something so traumatic.

M: ‘David…?’

If he could just remember his basic training. ‘What do you do if there’s blood?? Right, gloves, I need gloves! WHERE THE FUCK AM I GOING TO GET GLOVES?!? WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU??’ but in the back of his mind he heard this voice calling out to him…

M: ‘David…? DAVID?? David are you still there? Sir? Sir, are you still there? Can you hear me? David, if you can hear me, don’t hang up the phone – I’m dispatching police to your phones location. David? DAVID?? DAVID!!’

D: ‘YES, YES, sorry Maddy, sorry sorry, I’m here, I’m here, I just, I think I zoned out for a sec, sorry, I’m back, I’m back!’

M: ‘David, you had me worried there, are you okay?’

D: ‘Yes, no I’m okay. I’m just freaking out, I don’t know what to do!’

M: ‘David, I’ve dispatched police and paramedics to your phones location, I’ve traced the call and they should be there soon, but in the meantime I need your help, are you okay with that?’

D: ‘Yeah sure, I’ve done my first aid training so I kinda know some stuff!’

M: ‘That’s great to hear David. Okay, now tell me exactly what you see. Who’s in the car?’

D: ‘Um, there’s a man and a woman. They’re both not moving, and they’re both covered in blood. They’re both in the front and still have their seatbelts on. They’d be mid to late twenties.’

M: ‘David, that’s excellent. The more info you can give me, the more I can relay to the paramedics. Now have you checked either of them for a pulse?’

D: ‘Um, uh, no. I don’t have gloves. There’s just so much blood and glass everywhere. She’s got cuts all over her neck and glass and hair and I can’t see her chest moving…’

M: ‘David, I need to know if she’s got a pulse, do you remember how to check for a pulse?’

D: ‘…yeah’

M: ‘Well, I need to know. You need to check for me. I know it’s scary, but we need to see if there’s any life in that car!’

D: ‘Oh god…’

David rolled up his sleeve and reached through the jagged broken remnants of the window, cutting his own arm in the process. He felt around her neck for a pulse and wasn’t succeeding.

D: ‘I’m not finding one. I also cut myself on the glass. I need gloves!! OH GOD, IS SHE DEAD?? MADDY, SHE’S FUCKING DEAD!! OH GOD SHE’s FUCKING DEAD!! I JUST TOUCHED A DEAD WOMAN!!’

M: ‘DAVID!! YOU NEED TO CALM DOWN!! I need you to cover your cut to avoid infection, do you have something to cover it with, a hanky or rip your top if you need to!’

D: ‘I CAN ROLL MY SLEEVE DOWN!!’ he suddenly felt a smart for thinking of something to glaringly obvious.

M: ‘That’s good, David, now where did you feel for a pulse, just on her neck?’

D: ‘Yeah, I can’t get to her wrist.’

M: ‘Now you said said she was slumped over the wheel??’

D: ‘Yes!’

M: ‘Okay, I need you to carefully reach in and use a bit of pressure with your forefinger and middle finger, and press more toward to front of her neck, but up under her jaw, kind of the underside of her chin, but to the left, it’s soft and fleshy and you should feel something…’

David reached in and started poking and prodding around this woman’s jaw. He was so terrified, he could feel his own heartbeat racing. Every time he poked her he kept apologising as he felt in someway it was inappropriate or rude to her.

He suddenly pressed a different spot and felt something. He left his fingers there a little longer just to be certain.


M: ‘David, that’s such a relief to hear, now are you able to check the male in the car, can you reach him?’

D: ‘I’ll have to go to the other side…’

David retracted his arm, and noticed his hands were covered in hair and blood. He then noticed the slowly growing blood again underneath the sleeve of his shirt. As he stood up, he realised he had completely forgotten where he was, and noticed a crowd of people standing around watching. Some were taking on their phones, some we’re using their phones to record the whole ordeal. A couple of people had taken it upon themselves to start diverting traffic around the scene.

He suddenly became quite overwhelmed by all the attention he was now getting and felt quite uncomfortable about it. He moved around the front of the car and saw a rather large number of dents across the bonnet of the vehicle, and he approached the male passenger, he was stopped in his tracks by what was in front of him. He certainly wasn’t expecting this.

The man in the passenger seat was in a much worse state than the female driver. He was completely covered in blood from a rather large and deep wound just above his forehead. There was a considerably sized chunk of hair missing and as David looked closer to see how bad it was, he realised that the man was also missing a similar sized piece of his scalp. When he realised this, he was overcome with nausea, pulled himself backwards and threw up on his shoes.

M: ‘David, David are you still there?’

He had completely forgotten about the 911 operator who was still on the phone with him. Where were those damn paramedics?? Shouldn’t they be here by now?? David wiped his mouth with his hand then wiped his hand on his jeans.

D: ‘Yeah Maddy, I’m still here. I just… I just threw up a bit…’

M: ‘David, are you okay? Are you hurt or in pain?’

D: ‘No, no it’s nothing like that, I’ve just had a closer look at the male passenger in the car and he’s in a much more serious state!’

He knew what was coming and tried mentally to prepare himself for what he knew he was about to be asked…

M: ‘David, has he got a pulse?’


D: ‘No, no I haven’t checked yet. His window is also shattered, but I’m more concerned about his head injury… He’s missing a chunk of his skull. Like, there’s hair missing and big chunk of skin and it just keeps bleeding.’

M: ‘Okay, I need you to put pressure on that wound. Do you have a piece of cloth that can be used? Or is there something in the vehicle that could be used?’

He couldn’t see anything. David put the phone down, took off his shirt, took off the t-shirt, and ripped it up. He ripped off the bloodied sleeve from his shirt, and wiped up all the excess blood from his arm, then used a strip of material from his t-shirt to wrap around the cut on his arm and tied it into place. He ripped another piece of material and folded it up a few times and picked up the phone again.

D: ‘Sorry, I’m back, I’ve just ripped my top to bandage my arm and use some more material to pad this guys head… Now what?’

M: ‘Okay, I need you to check for a pulse. You said he was still bleeding so it’s possible he might still be alive, but I need to be certain!’


M: ‘The paramedics are on their way, David, but I need YOU to try and keep calm and feel for a pulse, remember if you can’t…’ David interrupted, ‘I FOUND IT!! I FOUND IT!! HE’S ALIVE!! I CAN’T BELIEVE HE’S STILL FUCKING ALIVE!’

M: ‘This is great news, David, and Paramedics should be there in just a few minutes. Now, are you still applying pressure to his head wound?’


David was really panicked by this, and grabbed another piece of his tshirt and placed it underneath the heavily bloodied piece already under his palm. This was bad and he wanted to do anything he could to help.

Suddenly, the noise of the car horn stopped and David felt immediate relief. Maybe the horn could only last for so long before it stops? Surely not, right?! At that point he realised that the horn stopped for a reason. His eyes darted across the bloodied and glass-covered dashboard and saw the woman’s head move slightly, but enough to take the pressure off the car horn.


M: ‘David, what are you talking about?’


M: ‘Okay, I need you to call out to her, and see if she responds.’


M: ‘DAVID..! DAVID!! David, you need to go physically check. See if she can squeeze your hand or something.’

D: ‘But I’m still putting pressure on this head wound!’

M: ‘Okay, are there people around you?’

D: ‘Yes, there’s a bunch of people watching and recording with their phones, why?’

M: ‘David, I want you to call out for them and ask for assistance. You need somebody to help you. You can’t leave the gentleman, but we need to check the female for a physical response, can you ask somebody to help? Assure them that you’re a trainer first-aided and that you’re on the phone to 911…’

D: ‘Okay, I can do that…’

David looked over his shoulder at the small crowd that had gathered around. ‘HEY, HELLO?! I NEED SOME HELP HERE, PEOPLE!! I NEED SOMEBODY TO HELP ME!!’

Nobody responded. They just stood there like deer in the headlights of an oncoming vehicle. Unresponsive and motionless.


Everybody in the crowd looked at each other, but nobody volunteered.


Nobody took the step forward. David was beside himself. How were these people okay with standing around and watching somebody die, but not prepared to do anything to help. It was far too upsetting.


A young woman pushed her way to the front of the crowd, and repeated what David had just said, before rolling up her sleeves and coming over to David’s assistance.

L: ‘Hi, my name is Lauren, what can I do to help?’

D: ‘Lauren, my name is David. Are you okay with the sight of blood?’

L: ‘Yeah, sure, what do you need me to do?’

David handed her the phone, ‘Here, take the phone, it’s connected to a 911 operator, I also need you to take over here and keep pressure on this man’s head injury’. David swapped positions with Lauren, and put the phone on speakerphone.

D: ‘Maddy, you still there?’

M: ‘Yes David, I’m still here.’

D: ‘Maddy, please say hello to Lauren. She’s volunteered to help assist me. She’s with the male passenger, keeping pressure on his head, and I’m about to check the female driver.’

M: ‘Lauren, I can’t thank you enough for stepping forward to help out. Hopefully we save a couple of live’s today. Do you have any First Aid training?’

L: ‘No, no, I don’t sorry, but I’ve spent a lot of time in hospitals with my younger brother, so I’ve seen a lot of stuff, and I’m totally cool with blood ‘n stuff’

M: ‘Good to hear. Well, you’ve got both David and I here if you need any help or have any questions, but for now, I need you to focus on keeping pressure on that man’s head.’

Meanwhile, David and stood up to walk back around the front of the car to the driver’s-side. As he passed the bonnet, he had another glimpse at the dents, and as he looked closer, he realised that they weren’t just innocent dents… they were dents from bullet holes. This car has been shot at repeatedly, and he couldn’t help but feel slightly different about this entire situation. Why is the car riddled with bullet holes? Who are these people? Why are they being shot at? Why does somebody want them dead?

He returned to the female driver and again checked for a pulse. He couldn’t reach her hand, so wasn’t sure what else to do.


M: Yes, David, how’s the driver?

D: ‘I can’t reach her hands. What else can I do to get her to react?’

M: ‘Try something like putting a finger in her ear or her nose, it should make her react involuntarily.’

David wiped his index finger on his pants before touching her her eyelids.


He then tried his finger in her ear, and again nothing.

D: ‘Maddy, it’s not working, what else should I do. Also, I’m not sure if it’s worth mentioning now, but I think the car has been hit with a spray of bullets…’

M: ‘Okay, listen to me very carefully, I need both you and Lauren to check them for possible gunshot wounds. They may be quite obvious, or they could possibly be quite deep. They’ll be possibly blood-heavy, or even still bleeding. If you find any, you need to tell me, and you will need to apply pressure to the area.’

D: ‘Okay’

L: ‘Okay’

They both started to pat down each of their injured people, until Lauren called out, ‘Maddy, I can’t reach any lower than this guy’s abdomen. I can’t take the pressure off his head injury, and I can’t open the door. I can’t feel anything, and without taking off his top, I can’t really see any gunshot wounds.’ David also piped up, ‘Maddy, I’m the same, I’m at risk of shredding my arm on the glass as well. We need the paramedics… WHERE ARE THEY!?!’

M: ‘I’m really sorry. They should have arrived by now, but they’ve assured me they are almost there. You should definitely hear their sirens quite soon. Now, in terms of gunshot wounds, the paramedics can check for that, and they…’

David cut her off abruptly, ‘Maddy, the police are here, and a tow-truck has arrived, and the fire rescue unit has turned up, they want us to get out of the way…’

M: ‘You need to ask for whoever is in charge, and get them on the phone to me immediately’

D: ‘Okay, gimme a sec’. David asked around as to who was in charge, and nobody really seemed to know. The Police were pointing at the Fire Rescue crew, and they were pointing at the Police. David chose the Police officer closest and asked who the most senior officer on site was. He mumbled something into his lapel-radio and another Officer came forward and spoke to him, before being pointed towards David.

He walked up to David, with his arm outstretched ready for a handshake, before realising that he was covered in blood, and his hands were applying pressure to body wounds. ‘Fuck, that was awkward! Gidday, I’m Senior Sargeant Graham Grady, and I suppose I’m the one in charge here, but I guess I can’t really do anything if you two are half-way through windows. Where are the medics?’

D: ‘They’re supposed to be here any minute, but I don’t know how much longer they’re gonna take. These people need to get out of this car immediately!’

SSGG: ‘Well, I guess we just have to wait until they get here. They’re going to be the ones calling the shots, so we just have to wait. Is there anything that we can do to help you?’

D: ‘Actually, I need you to speak to the 911 Operator, Maddy. You’ll need to grab the phone, it’s just here on the sun visor’.

Sargeant Grady grabbed the phone, ‘This is Senior Sargeant Graham Grady, badge victor-tango-alpha-zero-four-four-six-three-nine-six. What’s your 10-37?’

M: ‘Operator Madeline Browning – Dispatch. ID number sierra-charlie-alpha-alpha-zero-four-four-seven-one-nine. You currently have an 11-79 in progress, requiring an 11-85. First on the scene have reported possible involvement of a 10-71. Please advise your team an 11-84 is required, if not already in progress. Oh, and please, call me Maddy.’

SSGG: ‘Roger that, Maddy. 10-4.’

As S.S. Grady handed the phone back to David, he heard the sirens of the paramedics approaching in the distance. He looked across the bloodied car at Lauren, and they both let out a giant sigh of relief.

D: ‘Maddy, Maddy, the paramedics are almost here. We can hear their sirens!’

M: ‘Fantastic! David, please keep the phone open, until they make contact.’

Shortly afterwards, the paramedics turned up and spoke to Senior Sargeant Grady, who referred them to David and Lauren. David gave them the phone to speak to Maddy and inform her they were on the scene and were relieving David and Lauren of their duties.

David and Lauren were then ushered off to a nearby ambulance where they were cleaned up, and had their minor injuries treated. They were bandaged and wrapped in blankets and given some medication to calm their nerves whilst they waited for further information. Just across from them, they could see the paramedics working feverishly with dressings and bandages and neck-supports, before the fire rescue crew were called in. They approached the car and began to use the ‘Jaws of Life’ to cut the doors off the car, before slowly assisting the paramedics in removing the injured people slowly and carefully from the wreckage. As they were doing so, another team of paramedics arrived, to assist the removal of the male passenger.

Senior Sargeant Grady approached David and Lauren in the back of the ambulance, and wanted to personally thank them for their assistance in the matter, and reminded them that had they stood idly by, both of these people would have surely died. They were heroes, and as residents of this community, Senior Sargeant Grady was personally going to ensure that they both receive a medal for bravery in recognition of their efforts.

Both David and Lauren were humbled by this announcement, and as they laid back down on their stretchers, the realisation of what had just happened, started to really hit them. They just saved two people’s lives. They had just gone above and beyond, took a stand, and saved two people’s lives. Who does that! David turned to Lauren and personally thanked her for stepping forward when nobody else did, and acknowledged that although she was afraid, she was incredibly brave.

One of the paramedics returned to the ambulance with David’s phone, and handed it back to David, ‘Somebody wants to speak to you…’

D: ‘Hello?’

M: ‘David, it’s Maddy! I just wanted to personally thank you. You did an incredible job today, and it’s not something to be taken lightly. Both you and Lauren are the sole reason those two people are going to be seeing their families again, and this is something that is going to stay with all of you for the rest of your lives. I’ve already cleared it with the medics, the hospital and the Police, that you’ll be granted permission to see both of them when it’s appropriate. I’ve no doubt they’ll want to personally thank the two people who saved their lives.’

D: ‘Thanks Maddy, you also deserve our thanks…’

L: ‘Yeah, Thanks Maddy, we couldn’t have done any of this without you – you’re a fucking rockstar!’

M: ‘Thanks guys, but this is what I do every single day, so I’m used to it.’

L: ‘No, you were amazing, you kept calm, which kept us calm, and we couldn’t have done anything if it weren’t for you. You’re the one who really needs all the thanks!’

M: ‘Thanks, that means a lot to me. Now, I’ve gotta go, but you need to know that our entire conversation was recorded by our systems, and our protocol states that a review needs to take place, which means both you and David are going to be taken to the police station to be interviewed about what happened, or they may even begin prelim questioning whilst you’re at hospital. Once you’ve finished your interviews, you’ll be given information regarding de-briefing and possible PTSD diagnosis and treatment. If you have any questions, either Senior Sargeant Grady, or one of the senior paramedics on-site will give you all my contact information…

L: *whispers* ‘Hey Dave, what’s PTSD?’

D: ‘Post Traumatic Stress Disorder’

L: ‘Right. And what’s that?’

D: ‘Shhh, I’ll explain it later.’

M: ‘I can hear you both, you know that, right?’

L: ‘Sorry Maddy!’

M: ‘Anyway, I’ll be in touch with you both in the next day or so once you’ve been discharged from hopsital. They’re going to keep you overnight for observation, and your families are being notified of the details. Rest up, guys. Great work today. Thankyou!!’

Both: ‘Bye Maddy’.

As they laid back, they saw the Police beginning to photograph the car, and they were marking out the number of bullet holes in the bonnet. David still felt uneasy about those, as he couldn’t contemplate how or why they got there. It was so baffling, and he couldn’t help but want to know more.

He noticed a couple of the police standing around the front-left corner of the car. They took a few photos and were talking amongst themselves, when one of them pointed directly at David in the back of the ambulance. The police officers looked at each other inquisitively, and then one of them put his clipboard under his arm, and began to walk towards the ambulance.

Suddenly, a man appeared in the back of the ambulance, and pulled out a needle in each hand from his pockets. Before either David or Lauren could work out what was happening and react to defend themselves, this stranger plunged a needle into each of their legs. They both screamed in pain, and the man slammed the doors shut on the ambulance.

The ambulance suddenly took off, and the back of the vehicle shook violently. Medical supplies started falling out of their compartments. They heard people screaming outside, ‘STOP! POLICE!! STOP THE VEHICLE OR WE WILL OPEN FIRE!!’ and then saw the back of the ambulance get sprayed with bullets. The man with the needles waked up to them and said something about interfering, and they shouldn’t have gotten involved, but as he began talking, both David and Lauren began to lose consciousness…