“Let me drive you home—”
“No.” I step away from her touch. “No, thanks. I’ve got to get my mom’s car back.” I drop into the driver’s seat before she insists. Or I change my mind.
A light rain spatters the windshield. I want to get away. I want to put as much distance between me and Sarah, Naomi, and the lump on the gravel that used to be my horse. The rain picks up, and I hear the sharp tap of it hitting the tarp covering Octavia. I press the gas too hard, and the engine roars into the still air. When I roll the window up, it seals the car in silence. My tomb, my grave.
The car pitches over the potholes they’ve never fixed in the long gravel driveway. I don’t look in the mirror. I don’t want to remember what’s behind me.
I navigate on autopilot, familiar with every turn of the road, every stop sign and hill. The car’s headlights pierce the darkness and reflect off the white birch lining the road. They look like ghosts. I reach to turn on the radio—a habit—but stop midway. The hum of the tires accompanies the buzz of thoughts sizzling in my head. Dad promised…If Mom had come like she said…She was the perfect horse for me…If the vet had just tried to save her…If Sarah had called me sooner…What if…? The yellow Slow Blind Curve sign glows ahead, so I know I’m about halfway home. To Wellesley. Home. But not for much longer.
The rain slows, so I turn down the wipers. The time on the dashboard tells me I’ve still got a half hour before midnight.
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