Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Speed This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

Custom User Avatar
More by this author
He can’t wait. Sixteen years; one hundred and ninety-two months; five thousand, eight hundred and forty-four days; one hundred forty thousand, two hundred fifty-six hours; eight million, four hundred fifteen thousand, three hundred and sixty minutes.

Five hundred and four million, nine hundred and twenty-one thousand, six hundred seconds. He’s been waiting.

A brand-new Nissan can accelerate from zero to sixty in just five point five seconds. Is it too much to ask for sixteen years to pass this quickly?

She comes in the color of his girlfriend’s lips; she comes in the color of suspended winter breath; she comes in pencil graphite and she comes in martini olive. She comes in five other intangible colors he wishes he could taste.

He won’t sign papers until he’s holding plastic. D for doting, M for male, V for vanity. She won’t endure the reclusive probation of his father’s garage. She won’t be bought until he can give her everything, until he can take her out every night. He’ll never let her rust. She’s unbreakable with a strong, sleek body. She has a license to thrill, and he can’t wait to feel it.

He dreams of sliding through the black butter midnight at a breezing beautiful fifty-five, sans turn signals, sans headlights, sans brakes. Stop signs are the breath of a suggestion at dead intersections. They whisper by his window and he pretends not to hear. Her tires lick the pavement seductively and nibble the yellow lines. He caresses the steering wheel and slices corners, and it’s just him and her and the road.

There’s power in the keys that no one else understands. Sometimes he steals into his father’s office and twists their toothy grins between his fingers. They rub together and squeal inaudible metallic secrets. He has to resist a foreign shiver in his arms, an ache to twist the keys in the ignition and hear the secrets amplified in the lustful roar of the engine. The keys smile and tempt him with no inhibitions, and he can’t stand it. They’re hot in his blushing palm.

Nights when his father rampages, he tumbles outside quietly and composes himself in the bittersweet ocean air and takes pleasure in the gooseflesh he gets from the chill. He pulls strength from clenching his fists around imaginary keys. He sets his life in park and shuts his eyes and sniffs out the highway, and he discovers salt-stained pavement still warm from the petroleum sun. He sits and sets his hands at ten and two, and behind his wet lashes he is high on adrenaline inside a gleaming aluminum edifice, screaming past at one-twenty and always seconds from crashing…



Join the Discussion


This article has 2 comments. Post your own!

AlexanderNevsky said...
Nov. 2, 2010 at 4:19 pm:
Whoa Julia this was really good :)
 
jayyrose replied...
Nov. 2, 2010 at 5:43 pm :
Thanks, I'm glad you liked it! :D
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback