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The Malfunctioning Brake
I rang my bell, as I biked towards my friend, Sahil’s house. We lived in the same complex, so it wasn’t that far. The place we lived, Roundtree, was great for biking around. Sidewalks that were shaded by trees branched off into different directions in different places, there were patches of grass almost everywhere, and there were two smoothly paved black roads that led out to the street which were great to bike on. As soon as I reached my friend’s house, I pressed the brake, which barely moved, and the bike stopped after around three seconds. Despite knowing that this brake was malfunctioning, I didn’t really pay much attention to it. Little did I know how this brake would ruin my day horribly later on. I knocked on my friend’s door. After around ten seconds, Sahil slowly opened the door, while adjusting his glasses.
“Can you come to play outside?” I asked.
“Sure,” Sahil said calmly. His younger brother, Arjun, followed him, to the door. Arjun was a short second grader, who was a fast runner. Only two or three boys in this neighborhood were faster than him, one of them being Sahil. Meanwhile, Sahil was tall, and was in fifth grade, just like me.
“We are gonna bike,” I said. They both picked up their helmets, mounted their bikes, and rode off their patio.
We took off on our bikes, going around our house complex. We would often take many turns, and ride off sidewalk edges that were around four inches high. I noticed that my bike wasn't stopping very quickly, when I wanted it to, but I wasn't really paying much attention to it. We eventually started the lap again, but I said, “Let’s take a different route.”
“Yeah, we should do that. Arjun, you can go in front,” Sahil said. At some point, we began racing each other, from one end of our apartment, to another. We started the race from Sahil’s house, and we did at least three laps. We never really cared who won, as we were having a lot of fun.
On the fourth lap, we began racing again. We went and cruised our bikes on a sidewalk.
“We should go off the sidewalk!” Arjun said. They biked off the sidewalk, and took a very small but hard U-turn, adjusting their brakes as they did so. I tried doing the same thing, and pushed on my brake, very lightly. Then for some reason, the brake lever was pushed all the way in when I expected it not to, and all I thought was, “Oh God!” I flew off my bike as it fell sideways. Sahil and Arjun both continued biking off, unaware of what was happening
About a few seconds later, I felt blood trickling down my right knee. As I bent my knee, wet, red blood gushed out, painfully. I saw a three foot long trail of bright red blood, stained on the road, next to my leg. My left leg’s skin was scraped from lower shin to knee, painfully stinging.
I hated what was happening. I wished that I could reverse time, so that I could have paid attention to the malfunctioning brake, and tried to fix it. Instead, I just carelessly played, despite knowing what would probably happen. I painfully stood up, picked up my bike, and started walking home. Sahil and Arjun both came eventually, worried and a bit confused what happened.
“Hey, you weren’t behind us, are you...” Sahil’s voice slowly trailed off as he saw the state of my leg. He realized that now would be a good time to not talk.
“Eww! Gross, you’ve stained the road with your gross looking blood!” Arjun exclaimed.
“Whoa! Arjun! Get his dad! Tell him to bring plenty of tissues!” Sahil yelled. He then held my bike in one hand, and his other bike in his other hand, while I clutched my knee, trying to control the bleeding. I walked slowly. Blood oozed, all over my hand, that in just a few seconds, the palm of my hand looked like it was painted red. My dad then rushed out, with Arjun in front of him, holding a handful of tissues. The moment he started wiping tissues all over my wound, the tissue instantly soaked with blood. We walked inside the house. My dad had to use many tissues, to try and stop the profuse bleeding. He then applied around ten bandages, with two of them falling off due to too much blood, around my wound. After applying them, the bandages were still loose, and they barely held on.
After around twenty minutes, I felt that the bleeding had waned, so I went back to Sahil and Arjun’s house. Sahil and Arjun were standing outside their patio, talking and throwing a ball at each other. Right when I got to his house, I bent my knee, and I didn’t realize that there was more bleeding, in that bandage. Annoyed by my knee, I punched it without thinking, and I just felt more pain.
“Are you okay from that fall? You scraped your left leg,” Sahil said.
“No big deal, I’m fine,” I said bluntly, even though we all knew that I clearly wasn’t okay.
“Your bandage is now leaking with blood,” Arjun said.
“Sahil! Help him! If you don’t he’s gonna die!” Arjun joked.
“Naah...I don’t think he will die. Nikhil is strong. But he looks helpless,” Sahil replied, smiling and shrugging his shoulders playfully.
“Yes!” Arjun said, sarcastically pumping his fist in the air.
I laughed. But my thoughts instantly came back to my mind.
Why must this always happen to me? I just got an injury two weeks ago on the same knee, now again?! I felt too annoyed. I was seriously getting myself injured every few months or so. I just decided to deal with it.
Once I got back to my senses, I realized that I had made a clumsy mistake, and I paid for it. There was one lesson that I learned that day, and I should have known this earlier. If your bike has any type of malfunctioning, such as the brake of the bike not working properly, don’t try to do any special tricks or anything. In fact, don’t even try riding it, since you would just end up like me. You would definitely regret what you did, but nothing will change that unless you try to be aware of surroundings, and take care of malfunctioning gadgets or machines, because safety always comes first.