1"I should have gone through with it," he scolded himself as he drove down the darkened road. Night had fallen long ago, but he had not even considered sleeping. In fact, he had not slept for days, let alone thought about sleeping.
"I should have gone through with it!" he repeated, slamming his palm against the steering wheel. But he couldn't shake loose the memories of that night. He thought he could get over it. "Time heals..." but that's just a lie, like everything else. He thought his parents would understand, but of course they didn't and there hadn't been any other way. It had had to be done. It had to be done, but he couldn't muster up the courage, and he let her down again.
Someone was riding his bumper. "Just go around!" he screamed. He honked at the car and showed him his favorite finger. The car swerved around him and ran into a car coming in the opposite direction. He laughed. Hysterically. He didn't even stop to call 911, but he noticed that the cars behind him did. Good, he didn't need any witnesses for this. He just needed some alone time. He kept rethinking everything that had happened, but there did not seem to be anything to do now. He just kept driving.
He remembered how he used to talk to her late at night. Sometimes on the phone, sometimes outside her window, sometimes just the two of them in his car. He would ask if she had ever wondered what it would feel like to just let go of the steering wheel and see what would happen. She would always just laugh at him, or look at him weird, almost as if she were concerned about him, but she would just smile all that talk away and they would make out like bandits as always. He almost smiled to think about those days. Those had been good days. Before the world had gotten in the way. Simpler times. But nothing good can stay, right?
"Right," he said aloud. "So I'm just supposed to take this like a man? What the hell does that even mean!?" He pounded a fist on his steering wheel again and just kept driving. He didn't have a plan, but he thought one would reveal itself before daylight, he hoped one would. Once the sun rises, everything changes, and he will never feel the way he felt that night. That exact night would never happen again and he almost cried to think about it. He couldn't deal with this. Nothing could be worse than being stuck with only his own thoughts for companions for the rest of his life. Every time he made a coherent thought, it hurt. And it hurt to think about making new friends, new accomplices. That's what they would call him. He couldn't deal with any of this right now. If he could only make it to daylight, but he wasn't sure he wanted to. He could feel a headache coming on, but he couldn't rub his temples right now as he was coming around a sharp bend in the road. He made the turn and saw a wide stretch of road, unlit and abandoned. Perfect.
Then he thought that cops never arrested someone just for taking his hands off the wheel to rub his temples. He felt stupid, but then, that's how he had been feeling for the last couple of days. It was becoming his normal state of behavior. He wasn't sure how much longer he would last. He had thought his parents would understand. When he had told them that he was in love, they had been happy. But when they told them who he was in love with, they burst into a rage, and he stormed out. They had no right to tell him who he could or could not love. They had no right, and he just could not deal with them then.
A thought came to him then, as he remembered, and a simple utterance passed over his lips, "Oh, I'm coming." He wasn't sure what it meant exactly, but he knew that it was important, that it could change everything. He wanted to change everything, so he just kept repeating, "I'm coming. Oh, I'm coming."
He hoped the rain that the weatherman had promised later this night would hold off just a little while longer. He did not want anything to look like an accident. This was no accident. He wasn't an accident, although his parents seemed to think he was now. Oh, but they would regret everything, wouldn't they? Wouldn't they regret that they had ever been born? Wouldn't his few family and friends be filled with some sort of sorrow? Did he really want any of that? He couldn't deal with any of that now. He didn't like to think about anything deeper than the kiddie pool.
But then it came back to him. Oh, it hurt to think about it. It stung worse than any wasp could try or any bee attempt. It hurt just to think about thinking about it. Even that pronoun, it, held some sort of baggage with it now. Like certain other words, it became synonymous with that very night. The night this had all started. All the pain, the torment that could not be undone. It had started then, but it would end tonight. He knew what he had to do now. "Oh, I'm coming."
Despite all the pain, though, he knew he had to think about it. It was the least he owed her: his first true love, and his last. She knew this was coming. Up there she was watching, he knew it. She was watching and smiling. That night they had tried to play Romeo and Juliet with a cup of wine and strychnine. She had asked to go first, and he had obliged her. It was supposed to be so easy. If they could not be together in life, they would be together forever in death. A pact as old as sin, and just as deadly. She had looked so beautiful afterwards. The way her hair fell over her eyes made him fall in love with her all over again. He wanted to kiss her lips, but he feared that some poison might still be on her lips. He loved her: that much was true. But now as he could feel daylight coming to its senses, he felt himself rethinking everything they had gone over so resolutely just an hour or two before. He couldn't even think straight then. But he knew for sure he didn't want to die yet. He wasn't ready. He crossed himself and asked for her forgiveness as he left the room, her eyelids still open to the window that showed the first beams of day just peeking in as if to wake her up, but sad that their light had no affect this time.
All these memories rushed back in a flood. He could have handled them if they had been one by one, or even two by two, but all at once? And he started to cry uncontrollably, but he saw his destination up ahead. He could still feel that headache coming on. He crossed himself once for good luck. He thought it was funny. He had crossed himself more in the past week than in the rest of his life combined. He wasn't religious, and he started to wonder if that would be a problem. But he remembered that she would be waiting for him, and the thought slipped from his mind. One more time, for the road, he said, "Oh I'm coming!" This time it seemed more special somehow.
But for some reason, at this exact moment, he could feel a headache coming on. He saw a bend upcoming in the road. He reached first one hand, tentatively, then the other to massage his temples. He didn't flinch as he crossed those double yellow lines, which surprised him. His last words: "It is finished."
And he couldn't help but smile as he plowed through the guard rail.