“Oh, it hurts.”
At first read you might imagine the woman – a stranger in all senses – grasping her chest (or arm or foot), wincing at the embarrassment of Pain in Public.
On second read you might imagine the woman saying it in dismay, as if she were the cause of the pain.
On third read you might imagine it as a question.
You might even imagine her saying it with a Gollum-esque inflection, making me the “it” and the hurt a surprise. (Which gives me a perverse giggle every time I picture it. Oh, it hurtsssss itself doessss it? The world needs more Tolkein, always.)
But no matter how many times you read it, sounding out the the three words in your head, you would be wrong because words simply do not do justice to her voice. Punctuation and black-and-white and spellcheck only take away from the startling sentence, erupting like a flock of birds taking wing. But only to the next wire. Not really gone.