The air smelt like burned rubber, like tires that spin out abruptly on asphalt. I tasted metal in my mouth, the stickiness of phlegm and blood mixed together making me gag. My stomach heaved, the muscles of my abdomen tightening at my sides forcing me to sit up and retch to the side of where I’d been passed out only moments before.
Well, I thought, at least now I know that I can move.
When I could breathe again, I took inventory of my wounds. There was a cut on my knee that had crusted over with blood and significant bruising on my side, but I didn’t appear to be irreparably damaged in any way. I’d live.
I tried to stand up. “Tried” being the significant word. I was halfway standing when one foot suddenly gave out from under me. I’d overlooked a swollen ankle, but after due consideration I realized it was numb completely from the last part of my calf downward.
I looked around me for something to use as a crutch – it was clearly broken – but found nothing in my immediate area that could be of use. So I crawled, heaving my body from one room to the next, all the while keeping my eyes peeled for an exit. I didn’t know where I was right now, but instinctively I knew it wasn’t good.