“saskatchewan”, or a vignette in exactly 404 wordsPosted: September 28, 2009
They sit within a prime model of American Muscle, staring at the stars.
Guitar tones resonate from within, melodies noodling around a pentatonic scale; whispered vocals playing against the music that speak of a love recently found. The stars are obscured by a haze not unlike the one found within a cup of coffee; the air is uncomfortable both in temperature and atmosphere. “So, what now?” he asks, as if there were an adequate answer. He turns the key, and a cool breeze pours in from slotted vents. The music skips for a split second. She sits two feet away from him, her chair leaned as far back as possible. One could assume she was napping, though he knew otherwise. His hands rest on the steering wheel, thumbs tapping away at the faux-leather. “I mean, I knew this would be happening, but…”
“I don’t know.” She finally interrupts, in a voice closer to a whisper, as she blew some of her dark brown hair from her eyes. Her gaze doesn’t shift from outside the window.
“And you’re just going to…?”
“Yeah.” She interjects, once more.
“What about…?” he trails off, tiptoeing around a question that he had for so long avoided. The music rises in a well-worn crescendo, only for it to end with a disappointing whimper. There is the sound of airplane engines in the distance. Red lights flicker in the night sky, contrasting with the dim whites of stars. It is almost too chilly. He turns a knob, and the sound of air being pumped in is replaced by the sound of breathing. One is slow, calm, almost calculated. The other, anxious, hasty. “Will you…” he searches for the right words, “Will we…?” He catches himself, realizing that he isn’t able to put his question into spoken words.
“We’ll figure it out later.” The statement was accompanied by a click, a not-so-subtle click, that indicated the door opened. The cabin lights burst into life, and the smell of nature and exhaust fumes cut through the recycled air. In one swift action, she exits the car, leaving behind a single memento that wouldn’t be found for another few days. Another not-so-subtle click, and the door is closed. He begins to stare into the abyss that was the night sky, noting its similarities with what he had just lost.
And just like that she was gone, left and leaving for a town in Saskatchewan.