Left In The Dust

Kate’s head whipped around to follow the object that had just caught her eye as her lover’s car sped past hers in the opposite direction.

She pulled over to the side of the highway and waited, expecting that he would double back. Two leather-clad bikers flew past without paying her any mind. Emissions from the well-traveled highway slipped through the vents and invaded the vehicle, even with the windows up and the air-conditioning on. She wrinkled her nose at the highway odor and watched as a fast food wrapper tumbled by in the wind.

“Let’s spend this weekend at my cottage by the marina,” Phil had insisted just two days prior over lunch. “My wife won’t interrupt us there…this time.”

Dark shadows of doubt slowly invaded the regions of Kate’s mind where joy and contentment once resided. Only that very morning, romantic fantasies had danced in her head. But jealousy now took up residence and started wending its way through her consciousness.

“Where’s he going?” it mocked at her. “Why didn’t he stop? He knows your vehicle. Phil always said he could spot that fire-engine red Mazda miles away. Why was he here, so far from the cottage?”

But Kate had no answer and the highway stubbornly refused to reveal her lover’s whereabouts.

Several vehicles of curious rubbernecking travelers passed her by, but none belonging to Phil. The clock on the dashboard indicated 10 minutes had slipped by since she saw Phil’s car.

She felt her stomach clench and was thankful to be sitting down. Wiping tears from her cheeks, she closed her eyes and took deep breaths to try and calm herself.

Idiot. I’m such an idiot.

She had driven over half of the three hour journey to meet Phil at their rendezvous. She tried calling his mobile number several times, but the disembodied voicemail message only asked each time that she leave a message.

The fire burning within her now consumed what little emotion remained along with her tears. Kate cursed loudly, slapping the steering wheel and dashboard as though they would transubstantiate into the offending Phil.

But never discount the cleansing nature of crying. With all the negative energy almost completely washed away by her tears, Kate dusted away what remained of her pride and her broken heart and set off for home, where she would plan her new resolve.

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