The dusty black sedan screeched to a halt near the of the queue. The woman who stepped out looked a little more worse for wear than she had when she first slipped into the seat of the car, a little more worn down. She had the patina of a hard day to her.
She slipped into the line, just in front of an obviously stoned woman dressed like a fairy and a very cute school-girl looking young woman who was just tucking the keys to her Volkswagen into her purse. All three of them were wide-eyed and awed to be standing here. They each smiled uncomfortably to each other, each wondered if the other could read the desperation behind their made-up eyes.
The club sparkled like a gem. It looked almost out of place here in New York, looking more like Las Vegas than anything the east coast had ever produced. But it was the hottest club in the world – the place where one was most likely to meet, greet and sleep with someone famous.
Later all three of the would tell the police it was as if time had slowed down to a fraction of its normal speed. The girl dressed as a fairy screamed first, so it was likely she had seen the future before the others could – before anyone in line could.
A silver Porsche careened around the corner about two blocks from the club and its line-up of beautiful hopefuls. It’s tires squealed like injured animals on the pavement and its engine screamed like an angry dragon. It’s high-beams were flicked on, nearly blinding those in the queue it was racing toward. Nobody had time to move, and the progress of now into then crystallized into a solid. It was almost over before it began.
The car first plowed through the queue a ahead of the three woman, cutting people down and apart, like careless scissors through a chain of paper dolls. Several were smashed through the wall as the bumper of the car tore brick from mortal and lives from bodies with the sickening dull crumpled sound only a car hitting the immobile can produce.
The driver’s door popped open and a woman covered in blood staggered out. Her left arm jutted at an odd angle from her shoulder, and her face was obviously disintegrated beneath the blood streaming from the gash across her forehead. She took two steps, tried to mouth something, then collapsed dead to the sidewalk.
The papers the next day made clear she had been out of her mind on drugs, that she had taken Valium to bring her down from the intense high of cocaine and a cocktail of pills she’d probably been experiencing. On Sunday a local church choir sang laments for the twelve dead and thirty injured in the accident.
Each of the women came back the next day to look upon the carnage of what could have been their lives. Each came at a separate time, none saw the others, but each left with a clear understanding that walking on the wild side would end in tragedy.