Always the unexpected
I was walking past a fast food outlet, minding my own business when an explosion behind me first threw me about 20 feet along the sidewalk and then dumped a whole lot of building rubbish on me.
So much for minding my own business.
Dazed, half deaf, and bleeding from several shrapnel wounds, I slowly got to my feet and looked back in the direction of where I thought the explosion happened.
Wrong. It was in the other direction. No surprise with the disorientation.
Not far from me, I could see several others on the ground through the settling cloud of dust, bodies lying on the pathway, not moving. A number of cars that had been driving past had got caught almost directly by the blast and had been severely damaged. Other cars behind had crashed into them.
The storefront I had just passed was now just a pile of rubble, much like photos of houses during the blitz and anyone caught in it would not have survived.
Still slightly disorientated, I could hear sirens in the distance, and then, above that, as my hearing slightly improved, screams from people who had taken the full brunt of the explosion.
I headed towards the nearest of the injured when I was knocked abruptly to the ground by two men running away from the scene. It took a few moments to realize these men must have had something to do with the explosion and were fleeing.
I scrambled to my feet and started running after them. They were some distance in front of me as was an oncoming police car, and I thought they could take up the chase, and stopped.
Instead, it drove straight past the two men and stopped opposite me, and before knew what was happening, I was on the ground with four weapons trained on my head, and three of them yelling that if I moved they would shoot me.
I tried telling them about the two fleeing men I’d been chasing but no one was listening.
I had a knee in my back and a gun to my head. This wasn’t going to end well for someone.
© Charles Heath 2018-2023