My first sustained piece of creative writing in a LONG time. Be kind.

The Scene-Route 1 in Edison, New Jersey. A two lane road with concrete divider. Nondescript grass. A strip mall with discount mattress store across the way and the Menlo Park mall Nordstroms facade visible to the left.

The time-about 5:30 pm on a Monday. Commuting traffic flowing slowly to the Garden State Parkway entrance.

Sound-Bang of metal hitting metal.

A woman, dark hair, glasses, dressed for work with skirt  moves an already beat up gray Honda. to the edge of the road,steps out. She seems calm says nothing

A 20 year ethnic boy in shorts and tee shirt moves a white Nissan to the edge of the road, steps out. They look at each other, say nothing.

A short man wearing his company tags moves a small white American car to the edge of the road. He steps out.

Man: holds arms out at right angles like Japanese geisha. What can I say? It’s a Monday. Just trying to get home from work. I tried to brake.

Woman looks at side of car. I think we need to call the police.

Man: Ok. walks back over to car

Man: cheerfully I’ve been in lots of accidents. I’ve rear ended people and I’ve been rear ended . Why once I was on 280 on the ramp and a woman plowed into the back of my car. She was in a hurry getting to a family wedding.

Cars on the jug handle are slowing down to view the scene.

Man: People like to look at accidents.  Once there was an accident on 280, and they put up a curtain so people couldn’t see.

Boy: sitting in car passenger side seat with door open. I’ve never been in an accident before.

Woman: As accidents go, this is minor. Nobody was hurt and there’s not much damage.

Man: There’s nothing to worry about. The insurance companies get together and works things out.  You won’t have to pay anything. Walks back over to car

Woman approaches boy. What he’s saying isn’t quite true. You pay money for insurance but insurance companies don’t like paying claims. They may raise your insurance .

Boy: Should I call my father?

Woman: Yes.

A white police car pulls up. A tall  Afro American police woman gets out of the car.

Cop: Annoyed but neutral tone of voice. What happened?

Man: I braked but not in time. I hit his car; he hit her car.

Woman: Nods

Cop: License, registration, insurance.

Man and woman hand police officer their license, registration and insurance.

Boy: Hands registration and insurance. I don’t have my license on me.

Cop: very ugly scowl. You don’t!!!!

Boy: Here’s my passport.

Cop stomps back to car.

Man, woman and boy look at each other acknowledging the unfriendliness of the cop.

Man: Women cops! She’s probably in a hurry to get home to her husband.

Woman:  not entirely sincerely Maybe she was about to go home for the day when she got this call and then had to take this call.

This is a good time for an intermission. About 45 minutes goes by while the cop does whatever kind of paperwork cops when there’s an auto accident. Man and boy text; woman paces, smokes a cigarette, tries to read a book. At one point, se approaches the police car to find out if cop is almost done with paperwork.

Cop: Yes, can I help you?

Woman [wusses out]: I know filling ut the paperwork takes a while.

Cop: nods

Cop gets out of car and approaches boy.

Cop: Date of birth?

Boy: April 12, 1982.

Cop goes back to car. Boy stares at road looking very anxious and sad.

Man: Don’t worry. She may not even give you a ticket. And if you get a ticket, I’ve been in court lots of times. You’ll go to court, show your license, and the judge will just dismiss the case.

Woman: I’m not so sure.

Man:  No, it’s not a big deal I know, I’ve been in court.

Woman: interrupting. I’m a lawyer.

Man:  slightly startled OK

Woman: You can’t count on the police officer not giving you a ticket. And when you go to court, you’ll need to talk to the prosecutor and tall him sorry you are. You’ll need to say that you learned a lesson and that you’ll never do this again. Id don’t mean to be mean.

Boy: That’s what my mother would have said. The judge won’t like it if I come in and look like I expect to be let off the hook.

Another intermission

At long last, cop approaches man. They have a brief seemingly upbeat conversation conversation. She seems to be confirming how accident occurred. She hands him back his license, registration and insurance but not a ticket.

Cop approaches woman and goes through same ritual.

Woman: Can I have the insurance Information?

Cop: The police report will be available in two to three days. You can pick it up at the Edison police station. I know you’re out of state; maybe they’ll mail it to you.

Woman: But I’m supposed to report this to my insurance company.

Cop: They won’t penalize you if you wait 24 hours.There’s no significant damage to your car.

Woman: But

Cop: Fine. You do what you think you need to do.

Woman:  Can I go?

Cop: Yes, you can go and he can go.

Woman: What about him? pointing at boy.

Cop: No, he can’t.

Woman: I’ll tell him.

Women walks over to man and boy.

Woman: We can go, but you have to stay. Sorry, but you don’t have your license with you.

Woman gets into car, pulls out and drives away.

The End

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