Way Out - part 1



The headache was threatening to split his forehead in two. A handful of aspirin hadn't touched the pain. He didn't even know where he was, the landscape was barren & desolate. Pink dots danced across his field of vision in a random frenzy. He gripped the steering wheel with both hands as the vehicle sped up until the dots coalesced into a fiery ball and POW! The sedan swerved off the road coming to a dead stop on the hardpan shoulder.

He rubbed his eyes and got out of the car. The rear driver's side wheel had blown. "FUCK!" He had never changed a tire in his life. His skull seared like somebody had poured molten lava over his head. He hunched down and started crying. It wasn't just the tire, it was everything. He felt like his mind was dismantling. His entire system of beliefs was shifting and changing. The lifestyle that once thrilled him was empty now. He sobbed into his palms, the release of tension built up over years, tears dripped through his fingers onto the sand between his feet.

He looked at the highway, a wavering asphalt ribbon extending in either direction straight as an arrow. Across the way a coyote appeared from the yellow grass, loped to the middle dividing line, paused and stared hard at him then turned and trotted away down the road. He heard a rattle in the scrub behind him and vaulted onto the hood of the car burning his hands on the hot metal. He threw his head back and screamed. Three vultures circled lazily above him.       

In the distance he heard an engine. A faded red pickup truck came into view, pulled onto the gravel behind him. The door of the cab opened and a foot bearing a pink flip-flop hit the ground. A woman of indeterminate age wearing a blue sundress swimming with batik dolphins emerged. "Are ya lost?"

He whispered to himself, Lady you have no idea how very lost I am.  


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