(Friend 1 and Friend 2 are driving down poorly lit streets)
Friend 2: (In the passenger seat, looking at phone) All right, it’s says there’s a right turn coming up soon.
Friend 1: (In the driver seat, squinting out the windshield) I can’t see any street signs. And where are all the street lights?!
Friend 2: (Ominously) Maybe the people who live here don’t want to be seen. (Looks out the windshield) Slow down; I know we’re late, but you shouldn’t overdrive the headlights.
Friend 1: You think I don’t know that?!
Friend 2: Clearly, I do think you don’t! (Checks phone) OK-turn-right-here.
Friend 1: (Squinting to the right) Where?
Friend 2: Here. Now. Right-here-turn-now!
Friend 1: OK!-OK!-OK!
(As the car screeches around the corner after almost missing it, headlights momentarily blind the Friends as their car shears the front fender off the incoming car; both vehicles spin around and stop, facing the opposite direction from where they started. Everyone involved sits there for a few moments; Friend 2’s phone dings to indicate that they completed the turn)
Friend 1: (Shaking head) Oh no – this didn’t just happen – I can’t have caused an accident – I need to go back in time 10 seconds – oh no – oh no – oh no –
Friend 2: I’m fine, thanks.
Friend 1: (Shuts off the car and looks over at the other vehicle) Ooh, I don’t wanna go out there; they’re gonna kill me! (Gasps and turns to Friend 2) Unless I just killed them?! Did I just kill somebody?!! Did I commit vehicular homicide without meaning to?!!! Am I an accidental murderer?!!!!
Friend 2: (Slaps Friend 1’s face) Knock it off. Look, he’s fine, see?
(The Other Driver had jumped out of his car, run to the front to see the damage, run to the trunk to retrieve a toolkit, dropped it on the ground near the front of the car, and run to the fender that is now 20 feet away)
Friend 1: (Gingerly taps the button to roll down the passenger side window; in a weak voice) Are you OK?
Other Driver: (Freezes while holding the fender) Yeah-I’m-fine-you-OK?
Friend 1: Yes.
Friend 2: (Simultaneously) No.
Other Driver: `K. (Puts on a face shield and begins reattaching the fender with duct tape and a blow torch)
Friend 1: (Pulls insurance card from the glove compartment and gets out of the car, followed by Friend 2. Watches the flurry of activity for a few moments, then clears throat) Need any help?
Other Driver: (Over the sound of welding) Nope!
Friend 2: (To Friend 1) I can’t believe your teeny car caused that much damage. And just look at it! (The front of Friend 1’s car is smushed) It may never drive again.
Friend 1: (Covers the car’s headlights) Ssh, don’t listen. (To Friend 2) Well I can’t believe my life is over when five minutes ago it was just beginning! And a mile away from the party, no less!
Friend 2: Forget the party; I’m probably in for a lifetime of back pain and inevitable painkiller addiction, thanks to you!
Friend 1: You mean thanks to your sloppy navigation, don’t you?! You don’t tell someone to turn as they’re passing the street!
Friend 2: You were going too fast! In the dark! You weren’t giving me anything to work with!
Friend 1: And I bet you’re lying about your back pain, everyone else does!
Friend 2: Just because I don’t feel it this exact second doesn’t mean I won’t in a year!
(The Other Driver begins hammering the right side of the front of his car)
Friend 1: (In a lower voice) And what about him?
Friend 2: What about me?!
Friend 1: We’ve already covered you; what if he, you know, (Whispers) S-U-E-S me? For perpetual damages?
Friend 2: (Staring at the hammering) I don’t think you have to worry about that too much.
Friend 1: (To the Other Driver) Excuse me? (The Other Driver pauses mid-hammer) Listen, I am so sorry about all this –
Other Driver: Don’t mention it. (Resumes hammering)
Friend 1: Well, I have my insurance info right here, and we’ll call the cops to come over –
Other Driver: (Stands and points the hammer at them) Don’t call the cops! (The Friends freeze; the Other Driver’s eyes dart back-and-forth a bit) I forgive you. (Resumes hammering)
Friend 1: That’s very… kind of you, but I think it’s the law.
Other Driver: (Gathers his tools back into the kit and throws it into the trunk) It’s unnecessary, no harm done, here’s something for your trouble (Tosses some large bills in their direction), and I’ll be on my way. (Slams the trunk shut and heads back to the driver seat)
Friend 2: (Nods at the bills and mutters to Friend 1) Don’t touch those.
Friend 1: (To the Other Driver) I don’t think this is a good idea....
Other Driver: (Re-enters his car) I don’t see the problem here, it’s win-win, you’ll never get a better offer in an at-fault accident, gotta go! (They hear sirens approach; the Other Driver whips around to the Friends) I said no cops!
Friend 1: (To Friend 2) What’d you do?!
Friend 2: I didn’t even! You’ve messed me up so much I keep dialing 999 and getting England!
Friend 1: (Looks warily at the surrounding houses, shrouded in darkness) Maybe one of them called….
Other Driver: Whatever; peace! (Floors the gas, spins the car around to the original direction, and peels away with the reattached fender occasionally sparking along the ground)
Friend 1: That was odd.
(A police car pulls up next to them)
Police Officer: Which way did he go? (The Friends point in the direction the Other Driver departed) Curses! Always a step behind! (Peels away)
Friend 2: (After a few moments) So, want to go to the party?
Friend 1: I thought you said forget the party because of your lifetime of pain!
Friend 2: Yeah, but this night might as well not be a total loss.