THE ONE WHO HAD TO - by Kim Moyer

“Mluviti stříbro, mlčeti zlato.”
A Czech proverb.
English Translation: Speaking is silver, silence is gold. 

     The sun was a blinding white in Amy’s green eyes.  Squinting, all she could see were splotches of black and yellow over hazy faces.  As she struggled to gain focus, she felt a large hand grip her shoulder.
     “Ma’am, can you hear me?”
     “Yea, yes.  I’m sorry… what?”  Amy was lost in the chaos of the morning, and not wholly convinced it was over.  And the sun was so sharp, it was taking all she could muster, just to focus on her surroundings, much less the questioning of…
     “Who are you?”  She whirled around, out of the man’s firm grip, swinging a fist around to push him away from her. 
     Eyes still squinted, and finally adjusting, she could see corners of a badge, and a blue uniform.  Officials.  Her chin relaxed slightly as she breathed out.  She held her hands up and open, more or less a universal symbol for “don’t come any closer.”
     “Thank you, God, thank you, God…” she muttered, but still kept a hand out, holding the man at a safe distance, even as she spoke the words.
     The man in uniform smiled at her, from behind the speckles in her vision.  “Your eyes will adjust soon, ma’am, I know it was dark in there and you were all hiding.  I’m a paramedic,” he told her calmly and slowly as if he knew the trouble she was having bringing her mind to focus on his words.
     The man lowered his head and shoulders, bringing his face closer to hers, inspecting her face.
     “You’re covered in blood, so we need to examine you, and the police will need you to give a statement later.  When you are ready.”