There was no point in turning around. His foot was already on the pedal. His eyes were already flickering like the street lamps. Like the whole world was blinking to ignore me.
I was the Zen master, or maybe the homeless rambler. It was a friggin’ moment of ecstasy, and not the good kind.
I was afraid of the ocean. Marlee’s daughter drowned last summer. Mom’s hands never wrinkled when she did dishes.
Everything diminished, just softened right then and there. Like watermelon falling apart in your hand. It all just becomes fluid.
Even my father, driving his Beauty, deteriorated right there, right in the leather seat of his Beauty.
My Beauty. My Beauty. There would be flesh and lunch remains to clean off tomorrow.
It was difficult to look for him, my pater, there in all the haze and the fusing.
Everything runs together. It all spills together into yesterday’s trash and tomorrow’s newspaper. But none of that seemed to sink in. It all flowed in and out of me, washed away with the windshield wipers.
We just kept driving.
A single pat on the dashboard and the world was right. My Beauty. There would be no intestines on the upholstery. There would be no talk of this fugue.
- Author’s note: This story is part of the Trifecta Writing Challenge.