The wind slapped forcefully against his face and the rain pelted his coat like little bullets as Glenn made his way to the old truck. “It is going to be a long night”, he thought, as he hurried through the darkness towards the truck. His hand found the door and he traced his way to the keyhole. As he quickly unlocked the truck and scrambled inside, he became conscious of the ominous and devouring black of the night.
Once the truck was start was started, Glenn turned on the headlights and windshield wipers before maneuvering down the driveway. The pale blue luminescence of the digital clock read 10:40, reminding him he had twenty minutes to make the fifteen-mile frive to the airport. “There is no way”, he said out loud, “that I will miss my flight” as he pressed down on the accelerator.
The impending appointment was the opportunity of a lifetime and one he could ill afford to miss. If all went according to his carefully laid out plan, he would finally land the job for which he had struggled to become qualified. No more scrimping and barely making enough money too pay his rent and bills. Landing this job would mean being able to buy a new truck instead of driving his heap of junk that broke down regularly. “Hell”, he thought, “I could buy two trucks and still have enough money to buy a house of my own”.
He dreamed of how much better his life would soon be, unconsciously pressing down harder and harder on the accelerator. He drove as if he were a knife mercilessly cutting a path through the blinding rain. Suddenly, there was a tremendous thud and the truck jumped up and over something of considerable size. “Holy Christ! I don’t have time for a pathetic , dead animal!” Glenn hit the brake pedal with a heavy foot and steered to halt on the graveled road. Turning off the engine, he sat and listedned in silence as the rain continued to pour down. Glenn glanced at 10:45 illuminated by the clodk then reluctantly opened the truck’s foor. He intended to quickly survey the damage done to the truck and then get to the airport. He was instantly soaked by the rain, the wind whipped across his thin frame, and he saw what it was he had struck. It was an animal of his type, a human animal.
There was gravel clinging to her coarse, gray hair and blood oozing from her mouth and nose. Her eyes were slightly opened and her pupils were fixed and dilated. He collapsed onto his knees and thrust his hand on the side of her neck until he located the carotid artery to feel for a pulse. A pulse was palpable, but it was weak with irregular beats. “What the hell am I supposed to do? This stupid bitch is probably dying, why in Christ’s name did she jump out in front of my truck?” Puncturing these thoughts was a low pitched, agonizing moan.
He quickly moved away from where she laid so he could think clearly, without her disturbing presence. In his moment of pondering a meditation, another option flooded into his mind. He had no time to spare if he was going to make his flight. “She’s probably a bag lady, maybe a prostitute. Is her life really worth it?” A man of conventional compassion, he began to justify leaving her behind. “The woman could have been drunk, maybe she deliberately flung herself at my care. Is her life really worth it?”
In Glenn’s mind, her life had ended and his was just beginning. The jury was in and the decision had been made, one life saved was better than none saved, and the life most worth saving was his. Glenn ran as fast as he could to his truck. He had it started and the wheels rolling before the door completely shut. He floored the accelerator and returned to the dark and rain soaked road. He looked at the clock to confirm he still had time to reach the airport and get on board the plane.
As he sped towards the airport, Glenn’s mind was a junble of ragged emotions. He began to perspire profusely and felt a sickening tightness in his chest. Without warning, a sharp stabbing pain with a vice-like grip engulfed his chest. He found the door handle and tumbled out on the road. Gradually, the lights became more intense and he thought he could hear the sound of an engine through the constant of rain.
“Thank God, someone will find me! There’s someone to help me!” He fell to the ground, his legs no longer able to support his weight. As he lapsed into unconsciousness, his relief vanished and a solitary question burned into his brain, “Will they be like me?”