Grace from the Fall by Mike Mabe

Posted: October 14, 2017 in General Fiction

small coverHere’s an excerpt from his debut book.  Enjoy!

Cody took another left into a residential neighborhood. Looking back, I saw a barrage of blue and red lights flooding through the rear window. I could not tell how many police cars were behind us. They seemed to fill the entire scene, like some procedural television crime drama.

Cody took another wild turn and headed straight for the end of the street. At the end of the street was not a home, but a small field with some scattered trees and a creek.

“We gotta ditch out,” Cody shouted.

“What!?” I shouted back, exasperated at the notion.

“Better idea?” he asked frantically. I barely had time to think.

“’Ey, wipe the car down,” I shouted to the back. “Grab everythin’ we touched. We don’ want ‘em to get our fingerprints.” I thought of every crime show from television, distinctly remembering they always looked for fingerprints in those shows. “Come on, ya’ll!” I wiped vigorously around with my gloves. Brett barely moved. Juan was in a complete daze.

‘Not like this,’ the thought continued to rumble around my mind. ‘Phantom of the night…’

Juan yanked his seatbelt on and tightened it. Brett crammed himself close to his door, hand on the handle, getting ready to jump.

Looking directly ahead, I witnessed the car take flight from the road toward a colossal tree. Two car doors flung open. Cody and Brett leapt from the car.

I considered briefly, opened the passenger door, and jumped.

Umph. Ahhh! Clank, clank, crack! Ahhh!

I hit the ground, rolled over several times, ended up on my back, and slid for several meters. At the same time the loud bang of the car crashing thundered through the night sky.

I scurried to my feet and disappeared into the brush. The small grove we bailed into was quickly filled with police cruisers.

I hobbled between the trees and shrubbery. My knee was throbbing, which made the rest of my leg go numb. About twenty feet into the brush, I stumbled down a small ravine and into the creek I saw earlier. The water soaked my shoes and splashed up my pant leg.

I heard distant voices shouting, but could not make out much from the scene of the crash. I listened for only an instant before making my way off the bank of the creek and to a nearby house.

I crouched down and took a moment to catch my breath. Wisps of frozen breath evaporated into the winter air. My hands shook and teeth chattered, my body soaking in the cold from my wet clothing.

‘Where is everyone?’ I wondered. ‘Where are Cody, Juan, and Brett? Did anyone peel off the same direction as I, or did they head the opposite direction?’

 

I reached down and felt tenderly around my injured knee. I felt for any fluid in it that would indicate swelling or damage.

‘What was that loud crack?’ I wondered silently. ‘Must have been a tree branch of some sort.’

I did not feel anything to indicate injury and immediately felt relief. I had not done something that would hinder my ability to run.

‘I need to get home.’ I thought. ‘I’m not going down like this. Phantom of the night…’

In my thinking, if I got home, then time would reset itself. The phantom of the night would disappear. I would be Mike Mabe again: the normal kid from high school. I could retire the phantom, if I wanted, and no one would be the wiser.

I took another deep breath and pushed away from the side of the house.

‘I need to get moving,’ I acknowledged.Author

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