Rear View Mirror

downloadHe woke up eagerly, as he did every morning. He always woke up at the same time so he could leave his house at exactly 7:35 am. This was his routine for the past two months and he didn’t dare deter from it. He knew a routine this strict was not something most people followed, but he knew there was at least one other person who did.

As he pulled onto the congested street, a bright red Toyota Camry pulled up behind him. He looked forward to seeing that car every morning, or more accurately, he looked forward to seeing the driver. She had golden blond hair which was usually worn in loose curls. He could see her bobbing her head and mouthing the words to an unknown song. Every morning, he tried to guess which station she was listening to by flipping through the stations and seeing which songs best corresponded to her movements. This was the best part of his day. He had become infatuated with her—her golden hair, her awkward dance moves—all without even knowing her name.

They drove the same direction for about 15 minutes and then, as always, came the worst part of his day; she turned right onto Washington Street, disappearing until the next day. He hated that street for separating them.

The next morning, he left a little later than usual, not caring that it would make him late for work. When he reached Washington Street, he turned right in hopes of seeing the familiar Toyota Camry. Instead he encountered a traffic jam. He could see police cars on the side of the road and traffic was slowly being redirected around them.

As he drove past the police cars, he could see an accident involving two cars. Both cars were totaled, but his focus was on one in particular. It was a shade of red he had memorized. He continued to stare at what was left of the car in his rear view mirror as he drove past. He was so focused on the red of the car that he didn’t notice the red stoplight as he drove through the intersection. The last thing he saw was black—the color of the truck crashing into him.

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