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Андрей Обухов (Upper-Intemediate)

An accident (Short story, 2011)

His name was Andrei, and he was an ordinary Russian student. One day he was walking along Samarskaya Street. It was a bright sunny day and that was why Andrei decided to walk some part of his usual way home on foot. When he was walking slowly along the street not far from Samarskaya square a terrible accident happened. A young woman was crossing the street and suddenly a car appeared just at the pedestrian crossing. The driver applied the brakes but it was too late. Andrei heard the creaking of brakes and the sound of impact. He saw the woman falling down like a ragged doll. The car stopped, the driver got out off his car and helped the woman to rise. Andrei was staying at the corner of the street and watching the scene attentively. At the first sight you could not see that the woman was badly hurt. There were no visible injuries.

Unexpectedly, when Andrei thought to approach the woman to offer his help, the driver got into his car and drove off.

A moment later Andrei came closer and could see a lot of bruises and bloody scratches on woman’s legs and arms but the most frightening was blood in her mouth. It was terrible because it could mean damages of internal organs.

Andrei called the ambulance and the police to report the accident. Fortunately, the ambulance came quickly and took the woman to the hospital. Andrei left his phone number to the woman promising to give a report of witness if necessary. On the way home Andrei remembered the accident over and over again. The driver's behaviour was shocking and very cynical. Let’s leave alone that the driver broke driving regulations, what made matters worse he left the woman he had hit and knocked down in a few minutes. It was awful! How could a man be so heartless?! There is nothing more precious than human life. And passers-by? Nobody stopped to help the woman who was staying alone, shivering and crying, with blood on her face. How could people be so indifferent? It was beyond his comprehension.

As it turned out later the woman was called Gulia and she was very pleasant and sociable. Gulia called in the evening from the hospital and told Andrei that the doctor had put three stitches on her lip. Besides, three teeth were affected and it was necessary to extract one tooth and put an implant. The treatment would take several months.

On the next day that driver was found. It was not easy but the police did it. It seemed that all the problems were solved but the difficulties just began. All of a sudden the driver refused to admit his guilt and together with his chief tried to prove that Gulia was crossing the road on the red traffic light. Their attempt to bribe the police did not work. The driver proposed Gulia 10 thousand rubles if she stopped the investigations. Gulia was shocked by this action – only implantation of one tooth would cost 50 thousand rubles. Though Gulia decided to take the case to the court the driver believed that he could avoid punishment and he would win the case but…the police had a witness of that terrible accident and to lie didn’t make sense. Gulia said that only the report of witness helped her to win this case. When the driver knew about Andrei who was ready to witness in the court he had no choice but full confession of his guilt.

The driver was imposed a penalty, forced to pay damages and treatment, and was deprived of the driver's license for two years.

A few days later Andrei and Gulia agreed to meet. This day marked the beginning of their friendship.

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