The light is painful from where I float in the darkness. There’s been a terrible accident. My mind is a mash of screeching tyres and the silent smell of burning metal.
Elaine? Elaine, can you hear me?
I hurt badly but the light soothes me. It is hot, white, but warm like melting butter, too fluid for the hard sting of pain, too intense for the dull ache of sorrow. Voices drift from behind its veil, voices I thought I’d forgotten. The light wants me and I want it, but there’s a whisper at the back of my mind, and it hisses at me to stay away.
Elaine, can you hear me?
Let me go, I tell it. I drift closer to the light. The grief, the anger, the shock…they fade into a dreamless nothing. I see the faces of those I love the most, and they are smiling, warm. For the first time in my life I feel true peace.
Suddenly something tugs me back.
“Elaine, can you hear me?”
The light gets smaller and smaller. The ache in my chest returns. Once again, they pull me back.