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Wolf, Part II
I was not sure how I got here. I knew where I was; stuck in a bed that has been a place of rest to many. I knew he was gone; they had come straight out to me with that. I can hardly remember how it happened, but sometimes I lay here and remember, section by section, how I got to this living hell.
The moon was a full circle, shining boldly through the night. The car’s engine purred smoothly as it crossed the ice. Black ice. We both knew it was there. It glistened in front of our headlights, and if only I had known that it would later lead to his death.
“So, you psyched, man?” I had been ready to drift into a lovely sleep, but his words crept into my mind and woke me up.
“‘Bout what?” I had a good feeling I knew what he was talking about, but I was really in no mood to talk.
“Oh come on. You know were not going here just to ski.” He was smiling, and I could tell he was teasing me.
“Yes we are, now let me get some sleep.”
“What about Emily?” He had actually stretched out the word and changed the question into a taunt. Of course, we always did this, and it was of no offense to me.
“What about her?”
“Oh, you know, you two can meet under the mistle-toe and-”
“Aw, man, cant you just shut of for a few minutes? Besides, I really don’t want to talk about that.” He had been doing this to me all night. I looked at him through one eye. He was smirking, and I had to smirk back. I decided that he would never let me sleep, so I stretched in my seat and turned the heat higher.
Despite my request, he continued. “Alright, so I was thinking we could go over to her hotel and her some candy or something, then I could-”
“I said be quiet…”
“Alright, alright.” We traveled only a few moments of silence before he spoke again. “So… what did you get her for Christmas?”
“I know, I was just curious, ‘cause it’s not all the time-” If he finished, or not, I couldn’t hear him. I turned on the radio and allowed the music to fill my head. It was nearly eleven o’clock, and after a full day of driving, I was ready to sleep. I closed my eyes and let my mind drift into the night.
“Wake up, man!” Jackson’s voice filled my head like an unwanted enemy. I slowly opened my eyes and peered at the clock. Eleven twenty three.
“I’ve been asleep for, like, ten minuets!” I said to him.
“I know! You’re lucky I woke you up or you wouldn’t have had the joy of the road!” The joy of the road? This was one of the moments where I needed to decide if I should strangle him or not. I decided to let it pass.
“Oh yeah, that would have been terrible.” I said sarcastically. The road was stretched out for miles and miles, and I began to wonder when we would ever make it to our hotel. Although I was very tired, I was very excited. This was going to be a great Christmas, and a nice way to start out the New Year. Our hotel had an outdoor pool, and we were going to swimming outside while it was snowing. Of course the pool was heated, and Jackson kept saying over and over that “It’s going to rock”. I couldn’t disagree.
Our presents were in the back of the truck, and Jackson had already opened the one I was giving him. He didn’t know that I still had another one for him; a small key chain with our initials on it. It was in my pocket, and I felt around until I touched the cold metal.
In front of all the presents, the ski stuff was all packed up. We had promised to go skiing all day, everyday, except for Christmas. It was going to be great. It would be just me and him, hanging out like we did when we were in High School.
“So we’re going to hit the easy ones first, then move into the diamonds, right?” Jackson’s words interrupted my thoughts. He was talking about the runs we would be doing while skiing, and there was excitement in his voice.
“Yeah, that’s cool.” My answer pleased him, and he settled comfortably in his seat. Those were the last words that I would ever sat to him. We turned a corner, and there was a moment of silence. My heart beat in my head and every thing slowed down. The car breaks screamed in pain as they skidded across the ice, and the car crunched as it hit the barrier. My senses were knocked out of me, and I was thrown into a twisted world of darkness.
It had been exactly two weeks since the car ride. Amazingly, I walked away not badly injured, at least on the outside. The food I ate was tasteless; the words on my tongue were quiet and small. I hardly ever talked to anyone, only if it was necessary. The cards that I had received were still untouched, and I shut off everything around me.
The road was stretched out in front of me for miles and miles, and I began to wonder if it would ever end. The Christmas snow fell gently to the ground all around me, and the ground was covered by a sea of white. No one was on the roads; they were all laughing and celebrating in their homes, opening presents by the fire. But not me. No, I am driving down the highway, watching the sun climb higher and higher into the sky. Not that I could open any, the presents from the car had been scattered and broken during the crash, and were now somewhere in a junkyard torn to pieces.
I saw the skid marks that were made only two weeks before. I would have been able to find this place anyway; I can’t escape it. It haunts my dreams, playing the last few moments of Jackson’s life over and over again. I stop the car and get out. I reach into my pocket, and I felt around until I felt the cold metal. I pull out the key chain, and stared down at it. JC NK. I had kept this in my pocket for the two weeks I had been imprisoned in the hospital. It seemed so long ago...
Now I noticed I was crying, tears that came too easily as they slid down my face. They fell to the ground and were quickly frozen into the snow. I took the small shovel I had brought with me and dug a hole. I placed the key chain in the hole.
“Merry Christmas,” I muttered. I wasn’t sure if he heard me or not, but I hoped that he had. I quickly buried the buried the key chain, and pulled myself onto my feet. In the distance an owl cooed, a long melancholy sound that drove into my heart. The snow danced around me as the wind pushed it along, and the sun vanished behind a cloud.
I was alone.