Sirens blared and lights flashed in Jeff’s rear view as he stepped on the accelerator, willing his car to go faster, just a little further than he would be free. The car clunked and backfired but it sped up, he swerved to miss a spike strip laid in the middle of the road and the cop cars parked on the side. Soon he would reach the bridge. His car heaved its way up a hill, laboring with the burden Jeff was demanding of it. It wasn’t built for this, sure the speedometer said it could go 120 miles per hour but Jeff doubted it could go 75 much less 120. Even going at 60 right now the heat gage was reading too hot and the engine was emitting some sort of vile smell. He should have stolen a car too, something new and fast but he just couldn’t bring himself to betray his car like that, the lime green gremlin had been with him since high school, and now ever since mother had gotten sick, it was the only car he could afford. He should have picked something a little less conspicuous, a nice sedan maybe. Maybe then he would have had an easier attempt at escaping after holding up a string of convenience stores. His mama needed surgery and his minimum wage factory job would not be enough to pay for it. He didn’t want to rob those stores, waving his daddy’s old pistol around, demanding all the cash they had with a paper bag over his head, he needed the money though. He wasn’t about to let his mama die. His car gained momentum as it flew down the hill, the bridge separating Hill county from Oceanfront was just ahead. He careened around a corner, knuckles white from the grip he had on the steering wheel and the bridge came into view, and so did the line of cop cars that blocked off his only means of escape.
“Shit, shit!!” Jeff yelled as his mind tried to find anyway that it could out of this situation. Cops on his butt, cops in front of him, “Shit!
Maybe he could turn around and dart through the cars behind him. He slammed his foot into the brake pedal and nothing happened. He pumped his foot up and down a few times. Still nothing. Fear mounted in his chest, twisting his heart into a knot and turning his stomach into a brick. The brakes on the old gremlin had finally given out. Here he was in the middle of a car chase that would determine not only his fate but the fate of his mother as well and his damn brakes had given out. His eyes widen as the options available to him begin to narrow. He was either going to run into the blockade at a speed of a little over 60 miles per hour or he was going to have to go off the edge of the bridge. The feet between him and the blockade got fewer and fewer. What to do, what to do?
At the last moment before the gremlin smashed into the blockade, Jeff jerked the steering wheel, smashing the car into the guardrail the lined the bridge. There was a sickening crunch and then the car was flying through the air, flipped upside down, wheels still turning. Jeff blindly reached out till his hand clenched the handle of his black duffle bag that was tumbling around the passenger side. With his other hand he pulled his seatbelt loose from its mooring, thank God that had broken years ago. He shoved his shoulder against the car door that easily swung open and managed to jump from the car moments before it crashed into the river with a splash. He entered the chaos of the river just half a second after his precious car did and was sucked under by a current that pulled him downriver, away from his car that was now slowly sinking into the water. His hand was still clutched around the bag as he let the current carry him away from the bridge, away from the officers that had rushed to the edge, guns pointed at the water. He closed his eyes, willing himself to survive.
“Hold on mama, I’m coming” he thought as his body was carried away.