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The Drive

There was a cliff, and what sounded like some water flowing. “Where are we?” I asked.

Story by Brystan Strong - Brystan.Strong@gmail.com Photos by Muge Karamanci
Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

We had never been on a family vacation before, and it was strange to me that we would go on our first one without mom, but with the company of a female “old family friend” that we had never met before. “Are we really going to Disneyland?” My sister asked. She was young, so while I noticed the strangeness of the situation, all my little sister could think about was the destination.

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

“Uh, yeah sure, sweetie.” Dad answered. The “old family friend” sighed. “I didn’t realize we would have company this weekend.” She said. “You were going to go to Disneyland without us?” “No, sweetie. We were just going to California for some business, but then decided to make something fun out of it.” He tightened his grip on the wheel.

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

“Is mom gonna meet us there?” I asked. “I don’t think so, son.” He coughed. The adults were talking in the front seat. They talked softly, and the car had no air conditioning so all of the windows were down. All I could hear was the freeway whizzing by. “I can’t believe you brought the kids along.” “What was I supposed to do?” “I don’t know. Drop them off somewhere?” “Too suspicious.”

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

A heavy sigh. The adults were frustrated. Dad was sweating more than usual. “Daddy, I’m cramped.” My sister said, stretching and pushing on the back of the front passenger seat, which annoyed our “old family friend”. “Can we put our stuff in the trunk?” “No, sweetie.” “Why?” “There is too much stuff in the trunk right now, but some of it we will be dropping off soon and then we can put some of your luggage in, okay?”

“Can I call mom?” I asked. “Sorry, son. My phone is dead.” My dad said, and put it in the glove box. We drove for hours, only to stop for the occasional pee break. The sun set. My sister fell asleep, and I did my best to stay awake.

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

I woke up when we stopped. There was a cliff, and what sounded like some water flowing. “Where are we?” I asked. “The dump.” Dad said. “Is this a designated dumping spot?” I asked. “I don’t see any signs.” “Well, it is. Maybe you were asleep when we passed them.” Dad opened the glove box and pulled out a flashlight. “Old family friend” was already out of the car and waiting by the trunk. “We’ll be right back. Watch your sister.”

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

He got out the car and opened the trunk. He handed the “friend” the flashlight, and heaved and grunted as he positioned a large canvas sack over his shoulder. They walked out to the edge of the cliff, a ways from the car. I unbuckled and leaned forward to the front of the car and opened the glove box. Dad’s phone had a fifty percent charge left. I called mom. I heard a buzzing noise come from the trunk of the car. I hung up, and dialed again. More buzzing. I hung up. The adults threw the bag over the side and came back to the car. I shoved dad’s phone in my pocket. “Everything okay?” “Yeah.” I said. I buckled my seatbelt.

One Response to “The Drive”

  1. […] had one other short fiction publication since “Boys Don’t Say Sorry”. It’s called “The Drive” and you can see it on Citizen Brooklyn’s website, or through my […]