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Headlights – A short story

You’re paying attention? So there’s been this accident so there’s been this accident nearby.Very sad.On the telly.

Mum watched it this odd expression on her face – strange isn’t it – but then you know how these things affect her.

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Good thing really. That she wasn’t there I mean. It was on our way home on our way home that it happened. The accident. Poor brown-haired green-eyed boy. How they described him on the telly. Obviously I didn’t get a good look at him. Maybe you did. The car just didn’t stop.

So I’m sat here and –

I just can’t console her. Mum. Tried to comfort her – honest. I wish I could just explain things to her but she ignores me stone still. It hurts to see her like this. Just because the police haven’t caught the driver yet. All my friends gathered into groups at the scene of the accident but I can’t hear what they’re saying. Sometimes I think they look at me. No one comes over though. It’s not like I did anything wrong! You know that.

So now I’m sat here and so now –

Sat on the floor in my bedroom. Lara. Sat on my bed. Sat on my bed quiet as I play and sing. For her. You and Ladyface have left “to go get some drinks”. So subtle. You come back a little later. Later enough. Such a nice day it is with the Sun and all you know. Good that we all have some free time. And we’ve been talking talking like we should like friends. You won’t come back though not now. That’s just a memory. A goodbye-memory. You always liked memories talking about them all the time as you did. Said they were important. Can’t forget each other we make each other. So I’m trying to remember – honest. No one wants to hear me talk about our memories though. Forever in my memory. Inside my head. Laughing and crying.

We always did everything together always. Remember pretending to drive in the garden in the house? Racing round and round. Laughing. There are no accidents when you’re five no accidents which a plaster doesn’t mend. Learning to drive. Always thought you’d have been better on the road. And crying. You liked Lara as well – didn’t know that to begin with.

Taught to stop for red lights. “Hold my hand” sort of stuff. Did Mum teach you the same? Probably.

So now I’m sat here and so now I hope –

Hopes and dreams. You hoped to be a model. You were smart too. Smarter and better looking. You. So of course she liked you. But she liked me as well. I sang. Played. Laughed. Cried. You’ll never be a model now though. Shame about that. Lara bought flowers for me the other day. Not for you. And all the heads were red – red like love. You know that? Red – a familiar colour. Better than black. Black metal. Getting sidetracked though. This all started with the accident.

No.

It didn’t start with the accident. It started with two boys who played pretend cars in the garden and who wanted a girl. It started with guitars and songs and leaving “to get some drinks”. I don’t know when things changed. Why did they change, Joe? Our parents and friends have changed now. Too much. It was just us. We were close. Before the drumbeat. The damned drumbeat in the chest. Then we weren’t close. But one drumbeat isn’t playing now. You liked playing the drums. Another problem. Girls always like drummers. Oh well not this time.

So now our Mum’s sat there alone stone still. Occasionally the stone is shivered by sobs. They know who did it. Just a matter of time. I’m so sorry. She holds her broken heart as no one is there to hold her. Only crying. I doubt there will be laughter evermore.

I’m at the road now. Won’t be long. I’m looking down at my wrist. There’s that bracelet stained. Those little drops. Blood. Was that from our pact? Little boys like that sort of thing – big boys like girls.

Looking both ways at the road like a good boy. Nothing. Good. Good evening. The air is still heavy with the smell of Lara. Laughter still ringing in my ears. Lara didn’t cry. Not before. I step into the road. There are headlights now. They weren’t there before. Nothing. Blackness. Then headlights. Headlights growing larger. It looks like your red Honda. Red – a familiar colour. Why are you accelerating? Why aren’t I running?

Crack.

Red – a familiar colour.

So now I’m sat crumpled here and so now I hope that you never escape.

So now I’m sat crumpled here and so now I hope you’re running the rest of your days.

So now I’m sat crumpled here and so now I hope she’ll hate you.

We always did everything together always. So die with me.

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