I had a few hours left on my shift at the store. The daily trading had come to a mind numbing crawl. I noticed my younger brother and our grandfather walking across the parking lot. They came into the store and my brother said, "Hey Roman! We were out on a drive and thought we'd drop by and see you." I said, "Right on. My day is crawling by. It's good to see you two." I began showing them around the store. After about five minutes, we concluded our tour at the large plate glass window in the front of the store. We were talking about nothing important when I saw a white van pull up in front of the store. I stopped talking. The van looked very familiar. I couldn't place it though. The hair on my neck stood up. I thought, "What is going on?" A short guy got out of the driver's side door of the van and sprinted away. The deja vu moment hit me like a freight train. I exclaimed, "GET DOWN!" I dove at my elderly grandfather and pushed him behind a counter. My brother dove to the ground. The piercing blast and heat felt like my head was pushed into a jet engine. I yelled but no sound came out. Then I felt it.
A piece of the glass shrapnel stuck in my neck. The pain was horrific. I instinctively grabbed at the embedded object and yanked it out. That was a mistake. It had nicked the carotid artery. The blood began to spew profusely. My brother grabbed a rag and wrapped it around my neck. I stuffed paper towels all around it. The blood was quickly soaking through. My brother wailed, "We have to get you to the hospital. NOW!" I nodded and said, "First I have to send out an email." He looked puzzled and cried, "You're delirious man. You have to go now! Your jaw is cut all to hell too." I touched my face. I could feel the long gash on my jaw line and the two flaps of skin hanging down. I looked at him and said, "I know this sounds crazy, but I have too. I think I know who did this." I limped to the back of the store. The computer room seemed to be in order. The computers were all re-booting. The blast must have downed the electric for a minute.
I got on the first computer to boot completely up. I signed on to my e-mail. It was difficult because the keyboard wasn't working right. Only certain keys were working. I started typing the email. I was missing "R's" and "E's" and "C's". I typed anyway. After getting the message mostly typed, I was in the process of switching out the keyboard. I was very light headed. Things were starting to spin. My brother leaned over and asked, "Who's hali?" I said, "Oh he was a friend. I think he may have done this. Let me finish putting in all the letters." Then my brother exclaimed, "Oh shit! You think Charlie did this? I just saw him yesterday. He seemed fine." I shook my head, "He's not fine, and I think I better get to the hospital..." I hit the send button, and my brother helped me out of the store. I glanced in a mirror on the way out. The rag was crimson with my blood, my jaw was hanging open like loose meat, and my ear was all bloody. I can't wait to see Charlie...
BTW, this was (for the most part) a dream I had a few nights ago. It was quite disturbing. So I figured what better way to express it than in a Roman vs. Charlie blog. Goddamn cereal before bed, right Sparks?