Peer Review by Aarushikrishnan (United States)

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Never Forgotten

By: korra4life

I can't find my loafer. My closet is a mess and there is no black loafer. I sit back onto my hands and sigh, running a hand through my hair. I turn my head to look out of the window. The sky is a brilliant blue; totally fitting. My head is throbbing. 
"Jess? Jess, you're going to be late!" dad yells from the living room. I sigh and stand, heading out the room and to him. He was proudly holding a bag. "Look what I have." He grins and opens the plastic bag, pulling out a beige suit. My eyes widen. 
"Dad! Don't tell me you bought this" I snap, looking at him angrily. He grins even wider. 
"Don't worry about this. Just put it on and get going. It's your first day!" he laughs. I shake my head but before I can argue with him, he thrusts the suit into my arms. I don't want to take the suit but it's almost eight and I'm practically late. I hurry and change, scouring inside boxes and under furniture for my loafer. I'm only missing my left one, for some reason. My right one is tight around my foot. I grab my keys and hurry to the kitchen, tripping over something. When I turn, I finally find the stupid shoe. I slip it on and hurry out. 
"I'll be home soon!" I yell and close the door, locking it behind me. I fly down the stairs, reaching the bike rack downstairs and quickly unlocking my bike. Soon, I was on the road, weaving through the traffic. New York City in it's prime glory. Cars stretching down the streets, making it practically impossible to get to work. Honking and yelling filling your ears. Absolutely perfect. 
The Twin Towers rose quickly in my vision. They were completely breathtaking. The glistening metal and glass contained such... wonder. I pedal hard, trying my best not to sweat but also trying to get to the Towers as soon as possible. I can't suppress my grin as I reach the bike rack and lock my bike tightly. Every student in New York City has practically worshiped the idea of working here, in the Towers. And now I finally have an internship. 
I go through the double doors, taking a deep breath as the cold air washes over me. I hurry through the lobby, noticing the dozens of workers with briefcases in their hands and cellphones at their ears. Whatever they were talking about seemed to be important since they spoke with eyebrows furrowed and loud voices. I push my hands into my pockets, feeling the nervousness creep in. I have an internship... and I'm late! The realization hit me and I ran to the security desks, fumbling in my pocket for my ID. I searched both of my front pockets, my back pockets, my jacket pockets and my shirt pocket. Nowhere. 
"C'mon. Don't tell me I left it," I grumbled under my breath. The security guard lifted up an eyebrow and asked why I was holding up the line, his voice low and strong. I glance up, still patting my jacket. "I'm an intern. It's my first day and I think that I forgot my ID at home. Shoot." I sigh and place my head in my hands. The security guard rolls his eyes and gestures me in. 
"Go ahead. Don't let it happen again" he snaps. I nod my thanks and hurry to the already full elevator. I barely squeeze through the closing doors and push up against a short man with glasses. He glares at me and pushes me away, cursing under his breath. I do my best to shuffle away from him and everyone else as the elevator glides up. It felt wonderful; that uneasiness and tightness that your stomach feels as you rise. I barely contain my excitement, or my lunch, and am disappointed with how fast it ended. I slip out of the doors as they slide open and hurry down the hall to get my assignment. I enter a room with a few other students who are chatting quietly. I slip into a seat and brush my hair out of my face. 
The door opens after I finally settle into my seat and a woman with a bright red blouse on comes in. 
"Good morning, interns," she says happily, placing a stack of papers on the table in front of her. All of the other interns hurry and slide into seats. "These are your separate assignments. Please come to get them and then go ahead and get to your assigned floors." I stand and grab the paper that had my name in bold print: Glenn Parker. I glance at my assignment and then walk to the elevators to get to the next floor up. 
My assigned floor was just an insurance company. I introduce myself to a few people before immediately being swamped with orders to get coffee and donuts from the store downstairs. I can't keep myself from smiling brightly; even though I am practically their servant, I'm just happy to be here. 
I pass out the coffee to the people who ordered and gladly hand them their change and the receipts. "Here you go, a caramel frappe" I murmur under my breath and hand a short man his coffee. He takes it and says thanks before walking back to his cubicle. After the coffee run, I have to read a bunch of policies that the company offers for the customers. 
As I am reading the sixth policy, I hear a loud boom and grating noise. Silence immediately fills the room and people look around in confusion. I turn around in my seat and look out of the floor-to-ceiling window. At first, nothing registers. Then, I gasp as I see the smoke rising from the North Tower.
"Mr. Kline!" I yell, turning back to find the manager of the floor. He hurries over, staring out of the window in shock. "What happened?" He looks at me before rushing to grab the phone on my desk. He dials a number and presses the phone to his ear. 
"Yes? You see the smoke coming from the North Tower, right? Because I don't think you are" he growls into the phone. His fingers tap against the wooden table harshly. "What happened? We can't just... fine." He hangs up and takes a few deep breaths before standing up straight. 
"Mr. Kline? Should we get to the lobby?" a tall woman, I recognize her as the lady to order half a dozen sprinkled donuts, walks up with a donut in her hand. Mr. Kline turned his head to face her and shook his head. 
"Listen up, people. We will keep working until further orders are issued" he yells so that everyone can hear. Some people give him skeptical expressions but end up sitting down and continuing their job. I turn back to my policies, my grin gone. I wanted to leave now but I can't. I look up at the other workers and sigh, starting to read again. A shadow fell over my page and I looked up to see a girl about my age. 
"You're another intern, right?" she whispers, looking around. She has papers in her hands. I nod and frown, not understanding why she was asking. "Here, you'll need this. I don't know what's happening but you should be prepared." She sits down and takes one of the papers and hands it to me. It's a map of the entire South Tower. 
"Why are you giving me this?" I ask, looking over the page. She sighs and looks out the window behind us. 
"We're the most unfamiliar people to this place. We barely know where the emergency exit doors are," she explains, worry etched into her face. I nod, realizing that she's much smarter than I am. 
"That makes sense," I look at the clock on the wall and notice the time. It's a few minutes to 9. "Would we get in trouble if we try to evacuate? We're on a really high floor." She glances at me and shrugs. 
"I don't know. The manager said not to leave" she mutters. We sit in silence and I try to memorize the map of the tower. As I do, the intercom beeps. Silence echoes through the room as everyone looks up, waiting for the notice.
"Everyone in the South Tower, please evacuate. Evacuate in an orderly fashion. Please, evacuate" the voice says slowly. He doesn't have to repeat himself. I stand, cramming the map into my pocket and hurry to the exit doors. People pour out of their offices holding briefcases and purses, holding their phones against their ears. The girl appeared next to me, her face determined. 
As soon as we reach the elevators and someone presses the down button, the entire building shakes and a loud explosion booms nearby. I fall forward, holding my arms over my head. Screams of fright and confusion fills my ears and so does the grating noise of metal against metal. Someone falls on top of me and I squirm, trying to get free but it doesn't work. The smell of burning and ashes reach my nose and I try to hold my breath but the stench fills my mouth. I struggle to breathe with smoke filling my lungs and bodies blocking air from me. 
I finally am able to push the body on top of me to the side and continue pushing until I'm sitting down in a sea of bodies. I press my fingers against their throats but there is no pulse. Smoke was everywhere and I can barely see. I stumble to my feet and try my best to navigate through the wreckage. Tears fall out of my eyes and hit my outstretched arm. I trip over something and fall, cutting my arm against a tear of metal. 
"Help, help me please!" someone yells near me. I look ahead to see a puddle of blood. I gasp and sit up, cradling my arm to my chest. The body makes me gag as soon as I see it. I could barely identify who it was through the smoke, the blood and hanging skin. I recognize the bright eyes and suck in a breath. 
"Mr. Kline?" I whisper, looking at him. He is in pain. His breathing is labored and he reaches out to touch my arm. 
"Please, help me!" he croaks and drops his arm. I stand and try to find out how to help. The lower half of his body is crushed beneath a large piece of the ceiling and metal. I try to lift up the metal by myself but it doesn't work. My injured arm burns in protest. I try again but someone pushes me away. 
"Stop! Mr. Kline... he's stuck..." I try to say but I can barely breathe. The person shoving me is the woman with the red blouse from earlier. She shakes her head violently.
"It doesn't matter. Go!" she yells over the noise of destruction. I follow her advice and reach the stairwell, my head spinning. I hold onto the railing and move as fast as I can but there isn't enough oxygen in the air. I stop, panting, and sit on the step, holding my head in my hands. 
As soon as I close my eyes, I remember my dad's face as he held out the new suit. He looked so proud of me this morning. "Get up! Come on!" he yells. I fell a tug on my arm and open my eyes to see the girl who gave me a map. She had a deep cut on her forehead. Se must have been the one to yell. I stand and let her lead me through a side door. 
"What's going on?" I murmur. She takes a deep breath and then coughs. I look around the hallway and find an almost empty water bottle. I grab it and take off my jacket, pouring the water onto the jacket and handing it to her. She looks surprised and tries to hand it back but I shake my head. 
"Thank you" she whispers, holding it against her mouth and nose. I remember that I put the map in the pocket of the jacket and groan, reaching into the pocket. She misunderstands and hands me the jacket which I gladly take to pat down. I find the map soaked but still kind of readable. I hand her back the jacket and try to find our location. 
"We should go this way" I explain, taking her hand and walking through the hallway. It's terrible. As we walk, a piece of the roof slams down behind us and we hear screaming from the floor above.
We find an extremely crowded stairwell and join the masses. People walk slowly, supporting their injured friends. A hand touches my shoulder and I look back, my dinner from last night coming up. The hand was covered in burnt skin and dried blood and it belongs to a man that looks pretty much the same. His eyes were glassy and he walked past me, reaching out and touching those in front of him. 
There was loud talking as people tried to figure out what was going on. "You were on the 77th floor? Well, I was on the 82nd floor and we still got hit. How big was the bomb?" a woman asks, talking to the man next to her. He shrugs. The girl watches them before turning to me. 
"I don't think it was a bomb" she whispers under her breath. I raise my eyebrow and reach for the jacket which she hands back without question. I press the wet cloth against my face and take a few deep breaths. I hand it back to her and look around. It's almost pitch black in the stairwell but the emergency lights place an eerie orange glow through the room. 
We walk in silence, listening to others as they complain about the accident and guess what it was. After a few minutes, screaming filled the hallway from behind us. I turn around to see a frantic woman holding something against her forehead. She starts shaking people and yelling things. 
"Help me, please! Help! My sister is stuck in the elevator!" she howls, grabbing onto the man directly behind me. He sighs and pats her hand. 
"I'm sorry, Miss, but we can't go back. We have to keep going" he explains kindly. She turns away from him and grabs my shoulder, pulling. 
"Let's go! Help me save my sister!" I want to tell her no. I really do. I open my mouth to say it but then I make contact with her eyes. They were filled with tears that streaked the dirt off of her face. I nod and gesture for the girl to keep going without me. The woman forces a few other people into helping her and leads us up to another floor. It feels weird to go against the tide but I follow the woman grimly. 
The floor we reach is covered in smoke like the one that I was assigned. She leads us to an elevator and yells for us to save her sister again. I turn to see the girl standing behind me, her eyes wide. When she makes eye contact with me, her fear transfers to me. How can we save the people in the elevator when we can't even save ourselves? 
The men in front of us use broken metal pipes to pry open the doors. It takes almost ten minutes but they finally succeed. I help them pull it open but it's no use. The elevator is a few feet below us. 
"We can't get them out" I grumble and the woman turns to me yelling incoherently. One of the men grabs her and pulls her away, trying to calm her down. I feel terrible about it but I can't help myself. I grab the girl's hand and run through the hall, trying to find the stairwell. 
"What are you doing? We should help them!" she yells, trying to free herself from my grip. I shake my head. 
"No, we can't. We should try to get out ourselves and then get help once we're down." I continue to pull her, my chest squeezing in an attempt to breath. I can't get the woman's eyes out of my head. She looked so distraught. I look down, feeling completely sick to my stomach. The girl pulls her hand free and stomps in front of me angrily. 
We finally reach a stairwell that's pretty empty and go down the steps. My arm is throbbing and I cradle it to my chest. A man behind me sucks in a deep breath and stops. I turn to see him standing near one of the small square windows in the stairwell. Tears are running down his cheeks and he whispers softly, "They're jumping." At first, I don't understand but the next window I pass, I notice a shadow flashing by. I stop and face the window, scared to see it. The girl turns to stare as well and we both see the flash of a burned body flying past the window. 
"Oh my gosh..." she groans, holding her hand against her mouth. When I think about it, jumping makes sense. In an emergency, when all else fails, jumping is kind of smart. But not from one of the Towers. That's suicide. I keep moving, pushing the girl in front of me until she starts to move on her own. 
We walk in silence, trying to breathe through the dense smoke. As we go down, the woman in front of us comments about how hot it is. I continue, ignoring her comment. If I don't think about the heat, it doesn't bother me. The stairwell starts to get more crowded and loud. The girl turns to one of the side doors and places her hand on the knob before screaming. I frown and stare at her in confusion. She takes a few steps back and bumps into me, holding her hand gingerly. It was bright red. 
"What ha--" I start but then I see the dark smoke coming from the crack under the door. I grab her uninjured hand and pull her down frantically. I probably wouldn't have noticed the smoke if it wasn't much darker than the one already surrounding us. 
"It hurts so much" she forces through gritted teeth. I continue to pull her, having nothing on me to help her hand. The next door we pass, I place the back of my hand against it and it still burns. We keep running down, the smoke getting thicker. The more doors we pass, the more frantic we get. 
A few steps in front of us, a door is thrown open and smoke pours in. I gasp, my hand clawing at my throat. Tears were forced from my eyes as I try to go down the steps. There was yelling as three people stumbled out of the hallway, severe burns coating their skin. By the time I get to the next floor, I realize that the girl isn't next to me. 
"Hey!" I yell into the smoke. No one emerges. "Where did you go?" I suck in a deep breath and charge back into the swirling smoke. She's there, trying to support an unconscious man. My lungs burn and I throw his other arm over my shoulders to help them get through. Once we clear the smoke, I realize that the man's skin is blackened and hanging off. Blood is everywhere and I gag. 
After passing through a few floors, I find a cold door and we go in. The man is heavy and groans every few seconds. The girl stumbles and trips over something, the man collapsing on top of her. I pull him off and help her up. 
"We can't continue with him," I sigh, wiping the sweat off of my brow. She looks devastated. "He probably won't survive anyway." Her eyes snap to mine. 
"How dare you say that? Even if he might die at least we can try!" she yells. I take a step back, trying to think of something else to say. "Unlike you, I'm not a coward who runs away from people who need help!" I flinch, feeling the severity of her words. I want to reply but I have nothing to say. She's right, I am a coward. I could have helped the lady and her sister in the elevator, Mr. Kline and countless other people that I ignored on the stairwells. 
"I know," I grumble. I look away, and see smoke coming through the cracks in the door that we came in from. "Let's go. And we can take him." I try to lift him but my injured arm protests and she helps me heft him over both of my shoulders. We walk in silence, my thoughts everywhere. We pass by an office and I stop, getting an idea. I go inside and lay the man down on the carpet before wrestling him out of his jacket. I walk through the office, finding a refrigerator and opening it to reveal a few bottles of water and soda. I take everything and bring it back to the main room where the girl and the man are sitting. 
We work in silence, drenching both of the jackets in water and gulping some down. We drape one jacket over him and I let her keep mine to press part of it against her nose and mouth and the other part to wrap around her hand which was still red. She takes the rest of the bottles and tucks them into her pockets. I pick up the man again and we continue to walk, trying to avoid the smoke. 
"Do you know what time it is?" I ask, grunting from the effort of supporting someone probably twice my size. She gives me an annoyed look and glances at her watch. 
"I don't see why you need it," she mumbles. She looks up and grabs my elbow to lead me into another hallway. "It's 9:49." I nod and keep going, my legs starting to shake. I don't know why I asked for the time. Maybe it's just because I want to make everything seem normal. We reach the stairwell and continue down. After a few floors, we see the crowd moving to the right of the stairwell, making way for a group of firefighters with grim expressions. One comes straight to me and gestures for me to give him the body on my shoulders. I gladly drop the weight onto him and, grunting, he turns and walks down the steps. 
"Thanks... for, you know, helping him," she muttered, looking at her flats. I roll my eyes and shrug my shoulders. "And sorry for what I said earlier. I didn't mean anyth--" she started but the floor started to shake. There was a loud creaking noise like the building was taking in a deep breath. Everyone in the stairwell, including us, stopped and looked around, confused. 
"T-th-the ceiling!" a woman stuttered, pointing at the window. We look and see parts of the ceiling falling out around the building. I suck in a breath and take off down the stairs, holding onto the girl's hand tightly. We weren't the only ones. Many bodies rushed down the stairs, causing the building to shake and groan even more. 
"This way!" the girl yelled and tugged me into a dark hallway. We kept running, passing by windows showing the slow collapsing of the building. I don't know where she's leading me but only that I am sure that this was practically impossible. 
"How can one of the Twin's fall?" I ask. She keeps running and doesn't answer. I didn't expect an answer. The Tower's were too powerful. They were too tall and strong to be destroyed. We stop and I frown, not understanding why. Then I see that we were at a dead-end. 
"I'm sorry. I- we couldn't have stayed in the stairwell. There were too many people and we would have died and..." she stops, wiping her eyes with her hands. I turn my head to see a row of windows. 
"It's fine. We can jump" I say, pointing. She looks up and shakes her head. 
"Of course not! It's suicide" she yells. A part of the ceiling behind her breaks off and slams into the floor. 
"So is staying here," I whisper, taking her hand in mine. I hurry to the window and start slamming my shoulder against it. When it doesn't break, I grab an idle office chair and slam it against the window. The glass cracks and I try again and again until the glass finally breaks. I cover my face until the glass shards stop flying and look over at the girl. She's breathing hard. 
"In case we die, I should tell you somethings," she whispers, staring out of the broken window. I frown and look out, my stomach clenching to see the height. It wasn't that tall but it was still too tall. We wouldn't survive. "One: my name is Mya Adjuar. Next: I'm terrified of heights. And three: if we survive, I promise to kill you." She grabs my hand and closes her eyes. I brace myself and think about praying. As soon as I am about to, she jumps, yanking me with her. 
As we fall, the ground seeming worlds away, I do pray. It's weird and rushed, but I do it. I pray that God at least lets Mya survive. She's been the one strong enough to help others while I have done nothing. Please, please, please let Mya make it out of this alive. She deserves it. 
I don't remember hitting the ground. I wake, about a week or two later, my head throbbing. I am in a hospital room, the white walls blinding. My dad was sitting there, leaning against the back of a very uncomfortable-looking chair. I groan and try to move but everything hurts. 
"Dad?" I grumble. He shoots to his feet and is by my side instantly. I notice the dark circles under his eyes. The wrinkles at the corners of his eyes are starting to fade; he probably hasn't laughed in a while. 
"Glenn, oh my goodness. I... you... shoot. I'm getting a doctor" he laughs and runs a hand through his short hair. I give him my best smile and watch as he walks away. 
A doctor shows up and says a bunch of things I don't pay attention to. For the next few days, I live in a haze, barely understanding what people are saying. "North Tower... South Tower... 7 World Trade Center... terrorists... stupid plane." After resting in the hospital for three days after I wake up, I'm finally released. I stand in the lobby, asking the receptionist a bunch of questions which she refuses to answer. 
"C'mon, just tell me where she is. Mya Adjuar. What room and floor? Please?" I snap, tapping the desk. She shakes her head. 
"I apologize, sir, but I can't give you that information" she replies and continues to write in a notebook. 
"Is it because she was in the attacks? I was too. We were there together" I plead. The receptionists places her pencil down and sighs. 
"I'm really sorry but the family asked for no visitors. It's been hard for all of us and you need to understand that" she explains, her voice soft. I leave it alone after that and go home. I spend the next month trying not to think about it. My dad refuses to let the media anywhere near me and makes me stay at home. I try to find another job, frustration building up inside of me. 
One day, when I'm at home by myself, trying to read Shakespeare, someone knocks on my door. I ignore it, pretending that I'm not home. The knocking persists and the words on the page blur. I groan and sit up, putting the book down on the couch. I go to the door and press my face against it, trying to look through the peephole. It was covered in dust and grime so I couldn't see. 
I sigh and pull open the door, bracing myself to see a reporter and camera. Instead, I see red sneakers, dark jeans, a black shirt, and a cast, all on a girl. I stare at her for a few minutes before clearing my throat. 
"Can I help you?" I ask, glancing back inside of the apartment. I don't know why I do. It's not like I have anything important going on. The girl stares at me, her dark eyes focused on my face. I turn back to her, tapping my fingers against the door frame. 
"You were in the 9/11 attack, right?" she asks suddenly. I flinch and try to hide my expression. 
"No. Why?" I reply, staring at the floor. Her shoulders sag and she looks away, placing one hand on the arm with a cast.
"I'm trying to find someone who was. Are you sure?" she asks again. I frown, thinking. She's too young to be a reporter, right?  
"Well, sorry. I hope you find whoever you're looking for" I grumble and start to close the door but I can't. I frown again and look down to see a red sneaker between the frame and the door. I open the door and lift an eyebrow at her. 
"My name is Mya. Mya Adjuar," she says quickly. My chest tightens and I don't reply. How did I not recognize her. "I'm looking for this guy who is about my age. He was an intern in the South Tower. I never got his name." 
"W-was he about my height? Wearing a beige suit?" I stutter. She frowns, her lips pulling together in a thin line. 
"Yea. How did you know?" she looks me up and down, her eyes starting to widen. She probably just made the connection. 
I open the door wider and give her a small grin. "I didn't recognize you without the soot and the gash on your forehead. Plus the hand looks normal. Oh, and you're not yelling at me. That threw me off." She tries to suppress her grin but it doesn't work. 
"You think I look different?" she laughs before turning serious again. "You're a real jerk, you know that? I give you my name and you don't even have the decency to look for me. Had me looking all over Manhattan with a broken arm." I give her a sheepish smile. 
"Sorry, you kind of shoved me out of a window a few billion feet in the air. I don't think I had the chance." 
We try not to talk about it. Even though I can tell Mya almost anything, I can't tell her that I still have nightmares of the people in the building. Of the bodies flying past the windows, Mr. Kline as he pleaded for help, the lady with her sister stuck in an elevator. I know that I couldn't save everyone but I feel so guilty for surviving. Why me? I was selfish, moving through the building with only my safety in mind. 
The only reason why I survived is probably because of God. And I know, that sounds so stupid. But as I was falling and praying, I know that I prayed for Mya to survive. Maybe that one right thing I did saved my life. Maybe God likes it when you put someone else before you with the most sincere feelings. 
I shove my hands into my pockets, feeling the cold wind through my jacket. My breath catches once I see the spot. The buildings aren't there anymore; I know but it feels so wrong. The skyline needs the Towers to make the world seem whole. Without them, nothing is right. Mya is standing under a few trees, staring down at her phone. I walk up to her and kick her gently with my foot. 
"You're a real jerk," she grumbles, tucking her phone into her pocket. I give her a small smile and look away. I don't want to go. I've never been here and I don't want to be. "We have to do this." She's right, so I start walking, trying to take deep breaths. The trees cleared and there was the waterfall. It was beautiful. I walk right to the engraved names and place my hand against it. 
"You know what really sucks?" I ask, staring at the multitude of letters under my palm. Mya stands next to me, her eyes downcast. "We never asked for their names. The only name I know is yours and Mr. Kline's." She sucks in a deep breath and looks up, watching the water as it pours down the sides. 
"I know. But it wouldn't have made a difference, right?" she whispers and I barely catch her words. I move my hand and shove it back into my pocket. 
"I guess not. Their names don't really matter" I murmur, the sun's rays glinting off of the metal walls was beautiful. Mya nods and wipes her eyes. 
"We just need to remember them, I think," she says, taking a few deep breaths. She takes a step forward and looks down at the engraved names. "The woman who wouldn't leave without her sister, the man that refused to let the explosion take him. Did you know that when the explosion happened, Mr. Kline pushed me out of the way? If it wasn't for him... I would be in his position." I look at her in surprise. I didn't know that. 
"At least you made it out alive. If you didn't, his death wouldn't have meant anything. You should be proud of yourself for being able to remember him and the rest of them," I say, giving her a smile. She smiles back and wipes away another tear. "We can't forget them, okay? We have to promise that we will never forget them." 
She nods, taking a deep breath. "Of course. C'mon, I want to go to the museum" she mumbles, turning around and walking towards the Memorial Museum. I stare at the waterfall, and suck in a breath. Thanks, God, for saving the both of us. Now, I guess we should do you a favor too. We won't forget them. Not their sacrifice or desperation. Not their pain or hope. We won't forget their smiles or their screams. I promise, I won't. 

Message to Readers

Hi! I recently read a book based on 9/11 from different perspectives. When I was reading, I was overcome by this weird feeling. I still can't describe it. So, I wrote this short story based on a fictional character that was in the building when it happened. Of course, I wasn't there so I'm not sure how everything played out. But I really want your honest opinion on this. Was it realistic? Was it interesting or too boring? Thanks!

Peer Review

When I first read 'Twin Towers' in your excerpt, I was heavy with foreboding. You created the atmosphere of tension perfectly, and my heart was in my throat as I waited for the inevitable crash to occur.

The opening scene really set the tone and put me into the protagonist's mindset! I like how you kept her monologue going throughout the piece, and the interactions with her father and her boss also give me additional insight.

I would like the scene where she wakes up in the hospital to be expanded upon. If someone wakes up in the hospital after 9/11, I feel like their family's reaction should be more dramatic- thankful sobbing, embraces, that kind of thing.

You described it perfectly in the scene where she's going to work, I wouldn't change a thing!

This was lovely, and I'm sure you know it! Action-packed scenes are often hard to read, but while reading this, you were able to draw me in and keep me hooked!

Reviewer Comments

I would like to mention one thing- in the scene where the protagonist gets a map from the other girl, the scene feels a bit rushed and orchestrated. Perhaps do something like her pulling a floor plan from Google on her phone??