Road Trip

18 Nov

“It doesn’t feel so ridiculous now, does it?” he asks her, smiling as she sticks her arm out the window and pushes her hair out of her face.

“Oh, no, it still feels ridiculous. Renting a Mustang convertible just to visit my parents is ridiculous, but as it turns out, I’m able to suspend my embarrassment long enough to enjoy it.”

“Grace Dennison, ever the practical one,” he teases.

“Well, you’re just lucky it turned out to be such a beautiful day. Otherwise, I’d still be pissed about it.”

“No, you wouldn’t,” he said, putting a hand on her belly.

“You’re right. It seems to take a lot more to piss me off these days, huh?” she says, placing her hand on top of his and looking out towards the reds and golds of the changing leaves.

“Yeah. I think I’m just going to have to keep knocking you up if it means you let loose every once in a while.”

“Hey!” she says, laughing and slapping his hand away.

Smiling, he reaches over and turns the radio up. Otis Redding croons “… watching the tide roll away -”

Grace startles awake, disoriented and still lost in the dream of a memory that was all too real and all too far away at the same time.

This trip is so very different from that warm October day a lifetime ago. Back before everyone thought she was losing her mind.

She pops the seat back into the upright position and jams the keys in the ignition. She’s been asleep in her car in the parking lot of an elementary school. She turns on the GPS. Four more hours to her parents’ house.

Her parents are her last hope. If they don’t believe her, she’ll have to face this on her own.

This post is inspired by a prompt from Write on Edge:

Writing often involves a metaphorical journey as our characters move through the story and discover something about themselves.

This week, we’d like you to take us on an actual journey, specifically a road trip? Think about who is in the car. Where are they going and why? What’s on the radio or what are the travelers talking about?

In 300 words or less, create a fiction or creative non-fiction piece that lets us feel the wind from an open window or the dry heat of a car vent.

Also, I’m using the prompts from Write on Edge to help me flesh out a novel idea that’s been knocking around in my head for a long, long time. So I’m totally open to suggestions and comments about the story and the writing. Thanks!

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12 Responses to “Road Trip”

  1. The Lime November 18, 2011 at 9:32 am #

    Wow! I’m so curious as to what happened. The dream was so vividly painted, so sweet. And the transition was abrupt and surprising — beautiful writing.

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Lance November 18, 2011 at 9:38 am #

    I liked this because of how you emotionally connected the beginning paragraph to the ending one. It also provides a cliffhanger and I want another 300 words.

    well done

  3. themhalf November 18, 2011 at 12:55 pm #

    I want to know who he is. I want to know why Grace isn’t with him — where is their baby? What’s to believe or not believe? I definitely want another 300 words.

    Very well done.

  4. Barbara @ de rebus, via WoE November 18, 2011 at 1:45 pm #

    Wow… I am completely intrigued. I absolutely need more words. Spill!

    I especially enjoy the way you show your characters, instead of tell.

    For example, this piece of dialogue:
    “I’m able to suspend my embarrassment long enough to enjoy it.”

    “Grace Dennison, ever the practical one,” he teases –

    Really captures the contrast in her personality and the happiness of their relationship.

    Great read!

  5. TheKirCorner November 18, 2011 at 2:08 pm #

    yes, I liked this very much. I love a place where you see you see in flashbacks…and are able to come back to present with more detail.

    “her parents were her last hope” such rich words, so full of suspense.

    It ended and I wanted so much more.

  6. Venus November 18, 2011 at 2:48 pm #

    Oooooh, great tease! I definitely want to know more now. I hope her parents believe her, too!

  7. Life of a Doctor's Wife November 18, 2011 at 3:19 pm #

    I am normally not a fan of dreams, but when they are well done like this, they can really help the reality of the story stand out in sharp contrast. I think Grace’s fear is made that much more vivid having seen her as a happy, relaxed wife? girlfriend? on a happy, relaxed road trip.

    Like others, I really REALLY want to know what’s going on. And why she’s in this parking lot alone, without the man from the dream or the baby.

  8. Tina November 18, 2011 at 7:02 pm #

    I am officially intrigued. I wonder if her dream was a memory or a wish…

  9. Dawnie November 18, 2011 at 7:55 pm #

    I can’t wait to read what happens next!

  10. idiosyncratic eye November 19, 2011 at 3:24 am #

    I thought this was excellent, I loved the abrupt transition in the middle and it really has me wanting to know more. 🙂

  11. Amanda November 20, 2011 at 6:06 pm #

    Wow, definitely was not expecting that! I like it a lot-I really want to know what she’s dealing with. It sparked my curiosity 🙂

  12. angela November 20, 2011 at 6:48 pm #

    I’m very interested to see what it is her parents need to believe her about. I like the brightness of the beginning, contrasted with the discomfort of the end, the thought that people think she’s going crazy.

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