What Actually Happened

by Tom Kastanotis

Trevor was in his car waiting at a red light.  It was at a four-way intersection. The music was playing and he picked up his phone from the console. He looked at it and saw a text from work.  They were asking him to work tomorrow, his day off.  He worked for an insurance company processing claims. It wasn’t exciting but it was exacting. It required a lot of attention to details, and Trevor thought he was good at it. He texted them that he would work, he could use the overtime.  He didn’t know it at the time, but he would not make it to work tomorrow.

     Just as he put the phone down, he saw the blue car in the lane beside him drive into the intersection. He looked up and the traffic light was still red. Then he heard the boom and the sound of metal crashing into metal. A silver car heading through the intersection slammed into the blue one, t-boning it and jamming it into the light pole.

     Trevor pulled out his phone and dialed 9-1-1.  He told the dispatcher where he was, what he saw and was told police and ambulances were on the way.  He got out of the car and ran over to the two cars. There were about five people already standing there.  Nobody knew what to do. Trevor told them he called 9-1-1. They could see the drivers in the two cars. They were moving and they were in pain.

     “The silver one just plowed into the other guy,” said one of the men who had run to the crash. He was tall, probably more than six feet, thought Trevor. “The guy in the silver didn’t even slow down.”

     Just as Trevor was about to say it didn’t happen that way, two women pointed at the driver of the silver Mazda.

     “It was his fault,” said the woman wearing a Zac Brown Band t-shit.

     “No, no,” said Trevor. “The guy in the blue car ran the red light.”

     “What are you talking about,” the six-feet tall guy asked sarcastically.

     “I saw it,” said Trevor. “The blue car blew through the red light.”

     “What drugs are you on?” said the Zac Brown Band t-shirt.

      They looked at him like he didn’t know what he was talking about.

     Trevor decided this was not the time to get into an argument.  He would wait and tell the police when they arrived.

     Two police officers came up to talk to them after the ambulances had taken away the drivers.

     When they asked what happened, all of them said the driver of the silver car crashed into the blue one.  All of them except Trevor.

     He was stunned, and became concerned when he heard them adding to the story by saying the silver car also was speeding through the intersection.

     When they finished, Trevor approached the police.   He told them he had stopped at the intersection and saw the blue car speed by him and run the red light.  The others overheard Trevor, and told police he was seeing things.  The officer, not wanting to get into the middle of it, said he’d get back to them.

     The next day, when Trevor was supposed to go to work, the officer called him and asked him to come to the police station.  He said he had something to show him.

     Trevor called the office, told him he had been a witness to a bad crash and had to go to the police station. He apologized, and said he wouldn’t be making it to work.

     When he arrived the officer met him at the front desk and escorted him back to his desk.

     “The gas station on the corner has a surveillance camera,” he told Trevor. “We got the video and it shows the intersection. You have to look closely, it’s in the background, but you can see the crash.”

     He turned his laptop computer so Trevor could watch.

     He had to look close, but he could see his car.  The he saw the blue one pull up beside him.

     “Yup,” Trevor said to himself.  “This is what happened.”

     “The traffic light is really small,” said the officer.  “But watch it closely.”

     The light turned green.  The blue car pulled out into the intersection. The silver car ran the red light and slammed into it.

     “Maybe you got the colors of the cars confused,” said the officer, trying to be diplomatic.

     Trevor looked puzzled, and he knew it wasn’t a good look for him.

     He thanked the officer and left.  He was stunned by his mistake.


As the weeks went by Trevor started taking morning jogs on the beach. One morning when he arrived it was still dark, but he could see a group of photographers lined up along the water’s edge. They were ready to capture the sight of the sun rising over the ocean. The top of the sun was climbing out of the water and lighting up the thin clouds, giving them an orange glow. The photographers were going to get the picture they wanted today.

    Trevor turned away from the photographers, looked up the coastline and began an easy jog just along the water line. He thought about the crash once, but dismissed it.

    Just one of those things, he said to himself.

     He never had another incident like that again. His work was going well. His supervisors were telling him how they appreciated his accuracy. He had spotted some discrepancies, pointed them out, and saved the clients time and the company money.

     It was time to head back in his jog on the beach.

     That’s when he heard the sound of a swoosh coming from the water.

     He looked over and saw what looked like a big drone coming out of the water.  Only it wasn’t a drone. It was about six-feet long and two-feet high.  It did a 360. It focused on Trevor for what seemed like 30 seconds. Trevor didn’t move. He just stared at it.  It did another 360 turn, and then went back underwater.

     Trevor yelled to the photographers, but they couldn’t hear him.

     He began running as fast as he could.  He had to tell them what he saw.

     As he ran, he wondered if they would believe him. and thought they probably won’t.

     Then he asked himself, “Did he actually see it?”

     He could have sworn he did, but now he had doubts.

     Was it some type of new military submarine, he asked himself.  Could be, he thought.

     He didn’t believe in aliens, so he quickly dismissed it being some type of spacecraft from outer space.

     He stopped running and started walking back.

     He didn’t know if he should tell anyone.

     Was it real, or was he mistaken?

     He wasn’t sure.

    The only thing he knew for sure was that he wouldn’t be sure about anything again.∎