This is the first timeline she can remember ending like this.
She’s crunched up like an old can in the driver’s seat of an American car that, in this world, she is still legally too young to drive. Or at least it’s what used to be the driver’s seat; now, she guesses, she -- the parts that she can still feel, anyway -- is somewhere on the passenger side of the car, halfway into the trunk.
Her fingers twitch, unfeeling, and she hears the phone start to ring -- just once, and then it dies. In her head Manabu feels the awareness of all the other worlds, all the other hers, go abruptly silent.
She closes her eyes.
That’s it, then. A semi truck, a moment of inattention, wet roads. So mundane. She wonders, if Yukari were here, would she even be able to tell which hissing, steaming, twisted pieces of the wreck originally belonged to the car and which belonged to Manabu?
She remembers the surreal feeling of watching that girl holding her severed arm, of being unable to process that it was really part of her. She feels that sense again now. This time she is the arm, though, cut off and useless to the rest of her. Frustration bubbles inside her and she tries to move her hand again, blinking through the wall of red fogging her vision to try to see if she can salvage it. She needs to tell the others as much as she can remember about the accident and how to avoid it. She needs--
Her hand won’t move. Her head feels like it’s been stuffed full of steel wool.
Manabu swallows with difficulty, choking a little on the fluid dripping into her throat and lungs, and lets her head sink back against the warped mass of metal and carpeted flooring behind her skull.
Yukari is dead. There’s no one to fix her arm, to -- ha -- plug her back in to the branching neural network spreading like light across the quantum fields of spacetime. It’s not really so terrible, she supposes; at least she won’t have to live much longer like this.
Manabu laughs, tears bubbling up, and the blood between her teeth tastes of iron.