“Oh my God, Oh my God! Shit! We’re going to bloody crash, hold on Jess, hold on!”, swerving to the left then to the right and left again, Mandy pulled on the handbreak with all her might as the car finally came to a screaching holt, the smell of burning rubber coming up through the breaks.  The car felt at an angle and Mandy wasn’t sure why whether they were in a hole or had a flat tyre, but at least they had stopped.  Her heart was pounding as she turned round to check Jess was ok, her four year old daughter had not stopped screaming for what seamed an eternity but was probably only 20 seconds.  “Calm down Jess, sweetheart calm down, mummy’s here”.   Mandy quickly got out the car and there it was, one very flat tyre, completely blown out.  “Shit, shit and double shit, what the hell do I do now?”

Thankfully, Jessica had calmed down, Mandy had picked up her daughter’s baby pink children’s ipad that had been thrown across the car and gave it to Jess, this seemed to work as Jess gigled at some strange looking cartoon monster.  She then went to the back of the car to see if she did actually have a spare tyre, something she had never thought to check.  “Why can I never be the responsponsible adult, why do I always leave it to whoever I’m seeing to sort the break pads, the oil dipper thing wherever that is, not forgetting the windscreen fluid container, lets not go there she thought, last time she managed to put half a bottle of fairy liqid and a litre of water in her radiator, grrr”.  Mandy took a quick look around her, she didn’t recognise where she was, her mind had been else where typically getting from A to B and not remembering how she had done it.  Except this time she hadn’t got to B yet, and she wasn’t going to get there unless she could figure out how to get the tyre sorted.  Phew there was a spare tyre and a tool box, at least that was something, but it was getting dark so she needed to work fast.  Plus, Madeline her boss of one week will be wondering where the hell she was, not setting the best example her second week to be late.  Then of course there was Michael,  who had said he would take Jess two nights a week so Mandy could work at the pub not far from where he lived.  I should ring them first, or should I do the tyre first.   “Tyre first” she thought, not wanting to give Jack the satisfaction of knowing she couldn’t change a tyre or keep a job for more than a week.

Sweating, Mandy started to jack the car up, Jessie started to cry again wanting the toilet, “just wait sweetheart, mummy has to fix the wheel so I can take you to daddies”, faster she went with the jack, oh if only she thought, if only they had never split, if only she hadn’t got pregnant, at least hadn’t got pregnant with another man.  Yep even Michael couldn’t get over that one, he managed for the first year to treat Jess like his own daughter changing nappies and the like, but her ebony black hair, olive skin and piercing blue eyes, just reminded him of my summer fling in Spain, a wild hen weekend that just got out of hand.  Having Jess was amazing and she really is the most beautiful girl, but she missed Michael.

She had to stop, Jess was screaming again, saying she was wetting her pants, so Mandy quickly got Jess out of her car seat and took her down a little path to some bushes as she too need to go to and thank god she did, what happened next was terrifying, as she heard the lorry smashing into the back of her car crumpling it as the lorry seemed to just glide over it crushing the black corsa into something unrecognisable.  Absolute fear took over, what if, what if, omg, it was Mandy’s turn to scream as the lorry had somehow stopped and the driver was climbing out of his truck to find out what had happened, you could see the shock on his face, the fear, and then looking at his phone to call 999, the phone he had been texting on only five minutes earlier, not seeing the car stopped in the middle of the country road.

The man saw Mandy and Jess both histerical and the relief was immense, he thought the screams had come from the car, he ran to them and hugged them and couldn’t stop crying saying “I’m sorry, I’m  so sorry, please please can I call someone for you, the police and ambulance are on the their way?”   Mandy sat down with Jess cuddled into her and called Michael from the driver’s phone, “I’ll be there in two minutes, let me speak to the driver so he can tell me where you are, don’t worry, don’t be frightened, I’m coming to get you both, I love you”.

Practice 1: Outer Stories

Mr & Mrs Jones – Lucy Diamond

Three brothers, were brought up in a house that is now run by their parents as a b&b.  Two of them are married, the youngest is a fly by night.  There lives intertwine as they meet at the house for various reasons to help their aging parents.  The wives and future girlfriend of the youngest son play important parts in the outer story.

Practice 2: Story Ideas