Happy Friday internet people! It’s been a few weeks since I posted one of these. Hope you like it and let me know what you think in the comments!
Distracted Driving – By Adam Wright
Kevin’s pickup truck rattled down the highway. The black asphalt and white stripes on the road whizzed by in front of his eyes in a rhythmic pattern. He stretched his arm across the passenger seat and let out a yawn as he stretched.
He was singing along to some eighties song he’d heard a million times before. The name escaped him. Something about a movie he’d never watched. A glance at the clock told him it was near midnight. Another hour on the road would get him home. All he had to do was stay awake.
A sip of coffee might be nice but then he’d need to pull over to pee. No way he’d be able to bring himself to keep driving after. Better to hold it.
His eyes were getting heavy when he saw a flash of white in front of his eyes. It was a barefoot woman in a white dress. She was beautiful with raven hair draped down her shoulders. She was in the middle of the road but when Kevin’s headlights shone at her they seemed to go through her, as if she wasn’t there at all.
Slowing the truck to a crawl, he wiped his eyes and opened them again. There was nothing there. Kevin convinced himself he was just seeing things when a voice rang out next to him.
“Jesus, Deep Blue Something? That band was old when I was still alive. Update your taste.”
Kevin turned to see the woman from the road in his passenger seat. He yanked his arm back and opened his mouth.
“Don’t scream. I’m so damn tired of screaming. Just get used to it. I don’t want to be here any more than you want me to.”
“You’re driving late at night in an old truck on an open road. What did you expect? Yes, I’m a ghost. Happy now? Do you have a cell phone?”
Kevin tried to talk but a squeak came out.
“It’s not a complicated question. I know your truck looks like it’s from the 80’s but people don’t operate without cell phones anymore. I’m hoping to catch up on the news a little. Maybe watch some Tik-Tok videos. Where is it?”
Kevin pointed to the glove box.
“Can you take it out? I’m not solid anymore. Just start up whatever your favorite social media is. I’ll take anything. Hell, even if it’s NPR. Just hit play on something for me.”
“Uh… are you trying to haunt me? Did I do something to you?”
“Nope. Not trying to haunt anyone. Anytime one of these rickety old ass trucks show up out of nowhere, BOOM, I’m in it.”
Kevin jumped at the sound of the word BOOM.
“Don’t be so jumpy. I’m harmless, promise. I’m just bored as hell. The phone, can you?”
“Why are you here?” Kevin was twenty four years old but his voice cracked as he spoke as if he was fifteen.
“Do you want the long story or the short one? Short one’s easier.”
Kevin watched as a car drove towards his truck, the headlights flashing in his eyes for a brief moment.
“Uh.. short one?”
“I died, hoped to get revenge against my boyfriend. It didn’t work out. Now I’m here. Like, forever I guess.”
Kevin stared at the open road. He didn’t make a move toward the glove box.
“Fine, you want the long version. You’ve heard of the asphalt strangler? Yeah, turns out that asshole was my boyfriend. I had no idea. I found some gritty evidence in his truck one day and, well, you can guess what a dude called the asphalt strangler did to me. I swore with my dying breath I’d get revenge on him and next thing you know, I’m on this highway looking for trucks. Can’t help it.”
“Yeah, that’s the part that didn’t work out. The asphalt strangler died of a goddamned heart attack. Can’t get revenge on a guy who is already dead and in hell can you? You’d think that would be the end for me but, oh no, here I am, night after night in random trucks with random dudes. Most of them are poor conversationalists too. Not like you though. I like you.”
“Seriously dude, the phone, like now.”
Kevin kept one eye on the road as he pulled the phone from the glove box. He looked away for the briefest of seconds.
The world moved in slow motion as another truck slammed into the driver side door. Kevin felt himself tumbling, and saw his phone fly into the air.
“This is your fault, I’ll get you for this,” he spat the words at the woman in white.
The world went black.
Kevin opened his eyes. He was seated in a pickup truck, not unlike his own. There was a woman dressed in white next to him.
“You wished for revenge. Welcome to the party.” The woman in white turned to the driver. “Do you have a cell phone?”