It seemed time was in slow-motion. I had raised my hands to block the view of what was forthcoming. The screams evolved in a suppressed muffle as people ducked for cover under desks. The feeling of force as the gigantic crane swung a giant beam of steel in through the office windows. The building began shaking fervently as ceiling tiles came crashing down sending a conglomerate of what looked like snow cascading through the air. Electronics fizzed and water coolers exploded sending waves of water down onto the beige carpeting. The crane continued its swing as it carried men and women with it back out through the windows. I could hear their bellows as they plummeted to the ground. Somehow a fire began in the back corner and the flames began to spread as it made contact with the crashed ceiling tiles and wooden desks. The building was still swaying back and forth as people attempted to evacuate the torn structure. In a haze of disbelief and utter panic I followed the swarm of suited civilians out through the emergency exit towards a flight of stairs. We were twenty floors up but we didn’t seem to care. We ran for our lives while the echo of screams pulsated through our ears. A thought ran through my head that the entire building was going to collapse. The panic in my body grew and the adrenaline pumped throughout. I was on the verge of blacking out.
As I seemed to float down the myriad of stairs, my thoughts converged to that of Tina. She is my girlfriend who works on the 13th floor. I felt the need to find her and make sure she could exit the building. I watched the doors fly past me as I flowed down the steps and counted each floor. I hit the 13th and I swam to the exit. Someone grabbed my arm and tried to pull me away. I felt alarmed but I broke free from their grasp and opened the door. The office was empty. White sheets of paper covered the carpets and overturned desks were strewn throughout. No one was around, she must have gotten out. I had to check her corner office to make sure she wasn’t still in there. No sign of her. I ran back towards the exit when it happened. The building began its downfall. The screech of steel was tremendous. The grinding and snapping as girders broke free from their still life. The floor above me collapsed showering me in plaster and steel. I could only watch as my body became trapped beneath the rubble. I had a view out through the window and I could see the ground racing towards me. People were scattering for their lives but they had no chance. As the building got closer to the ground the rubble felt the force of gravity and slid towards the windows. I realized that a shard of steel was protruding through my leg. I hadn’t felt the pain and I didn’t care. Just before the building came one with the ground, everything slowed again. I closed my eyes and I could feel the wind brushing my hair. I felt alive. I felt scared. I thought of Tina and I hoped she was okay. I hoped she had gotten away safely. I thought of my parents and how much pain they would be put through. I opened my eyes and time sped up. Everything went silent.