When she came to, there was only the cold. She was on her side, against something hard, and it was draining the heat out of her, from the very marrow of her bones.
She tried to raise her head, but had not yet come far enough into consciousness. She relaxed, and only then came to understand that she was lying on concrete.
Thoughts flashed randomly, scattered and incomplete. She realized she could not remember her name, and that sudden insight sent her into panic. How did I get here?
She fought to gain control over her fatigue and the fog in her mind. She lifted a hand and found she could wiggle her fingers. She tried an eyelid only to let it slam shut again in response to the sharp, blinding light of an overhead fixture. She slowly turned her head on the unforgiving concrete, away from the light, and tried again.
One eye opened, then the next, and as her eyes slowly focused she saw a shiny black pair of boots standing next to her. Her eyes drifted up from the boots to the man’s face and realized that it was a police officer shining a flashlight in her face.
He calmly said, “Don’t worry ma’am. The ambulance is on its way. You’re gonna be just fine.”
As she began to hear sirens growing closer and closer, her eyes began to close again as she slowly drifted back into unconsciousness.
She awoke again to find herself in a hospital bed, still panicked and unsure of whom she was. She looked over to see a nurse staring back at her. When the nurse noticed that the patient’s eyes had opened and was conscious again, she scrambled out of the room yelling for a doctor. The frantic nurse returned seconds later with a tall, middle-aged man dressed in all white who introduced himself as Dr. Wilson. He began by asking the woman if she knew her name, to which she replied with a small shake of the head. He then asked her if she could remember anything that happened prior to the fall, to which he received the same response.