The Seven Five Nothing

The Seven Five Nothing are a collection of hyper-short stories, each written in a single sitting with no editting.


5. The Mexico Road.

She tucked our picture in the sun visor and wound down the window, letting the outside in. Her hair danced around her face, and the sun lit her beautifully. On the backseat, the revolver, unloaded, but bullets in the glove. Summer road and Tom Waits on the radio. I pushed my hat a little to the side, and leaned back, hand on the wheel. This was everything we'd been talking about, everything we'd been dreaming of.

Her belly was round, the baby just a couple of months away, and Mexico was where the road tapered. Here, on the way to nowhere in particular, we were somebody, something. Back where we'd started, we were nothing but two fucked up souls, lost and confused and pushed down by the weight of the world. But here, flying on rubber, kicking stones back from this beat-up old car, we had no reason to be sad, or shy, or confused. Here, we lived, and the life in our bones was more real than anything we'd had before.

Your existence can be reduced to it's simplest of parts when you strip away all that you don't need. When you stop thinking about tomorrow, only about the moments between each breath, working out how you're going to make it from one inhalation to the next, that's when you're truly living. She closed her eyes and I held her hand. We'd talked a thousand hours already, sharing our minds and the centre of our hearts, all the while surrounded by this beautiful land, this open space.

We watched the mustangs run free, yearning to be with them, feeling that in some way we were them. We felt the snow on naked feet, and when it rained, she opened the door and let her laughter meet the water. She was every dream I every dreamt, and though we'd been twisted when we were alone, we knew we'd be a thousand times more the moment we kissed.

The Mexico Road is any route you wish to take, just as long as you find a way to get there. When it is two, there is nothing to stop you. You eat sandwiches, drink coffee, count coins, sleep in the car, fight about who's better, Bert or Ernie, cry about the people you're not going to see again for a while, rejoice in the friends that'll find you. When you take the Mexico Road that all lovers should take, whether you think you'll be broken down and split up someday, or bound together, fused in the stars like golden souls. It'll be the path you never knew you needed to take, but the one that always felt right.

And when our coins ran out, it was time to use the revolver. I picked the place, it was quiet, nowhere. Perfect, really. I did it whilst she slept, because I'd promised her we'd never need it. That it was there just to keep us all safe, and that's why the bullets had always lived at the other end of the car. And when I went into the store, revolver in my hand, the bullets were still in the glove box.

The bang was loud. And I fell back, hard. Things flew, and I hit the ground, and I wondered, will I get from this breath to the next. And I wondered that more and more as each time it became harder to breathe. And then in the darkness, I heard her wail.

I watched the sky pass above me, looking out the window of the backseat. Her hand was wrapped around as she tried to touch mine. She was frightened and so was I. But I could see our picture in the visor, and I thought about the Mexico Road. Everybody should go there, everybody should find the route and somebody to take it with. And sometimes, it's not about making it all the way. Sometimes it's just enough to try. Maybe we weren't meant to make it all the way, just from one breath to the next. Sometimes that's all lover's can really do.

She sang quietly to me, to us. Sang old records we'd loved, screwing up a couple of words every once in a while, or forgetting whole verses. But whatever, it didn't mean anything much. And then, when she'd ran out of songs, she told me stories from her life, trying to make sure we added a few more thousand hours to our ever-going dialogue. And I listened, remembering that in this life, we're all just trying to get from one moment to the next.
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