A rough draft excerpt from my novella. I Hear A Symphony by Cody Fry was the inspiration.
| The rain beat down against the windshield, the whir of the wipers in time with the music that played softly through the speakers. He had a white-knuckled grip on the steering wheel as the streetlights whipped by. He could still hear her laughter ringing in his ears as if she were in the seat beside him, her feet curled under her. He could still see the way her hair blew behind her and the way her head tipped back as she sang along to some song on the stereo. The light before him turned red, pulling him from his thoughts and he rolled to a stop, finally peeling his hands from the wheel and raking them through his hair. He loosed a sigh, reaching for his phone that lay on the passenger seat, all but forgotten. The screen illuminated and his chest squeezed. Frozen forever, her goofy grin staring back at him from the lock screen. He unlocked his phone and dialed her number, knowing she wouldn't pick up. The light turned once again and his foot mashed down onto the pedal, the force knocking him back in his seat.
"Hey! It's Marley! Sorry I missed your call... or am I? I'm just kidding. You know what to do." He choked back a sob, as the beep sounded. He collected himself and cleared his throat.
"Hey sunshine, It's Jace. It's late, I know." His breath rattled through his lungs."I miss you. I'm going to fix this mess I got us in. " The rain was falling harder now and he pressed the phone to his shoulder, returning both hands to the wheel. Before he could stop himself, the words tumbled from his lips. "I love you. I should have told you that sooner. I should have told you more often. I think I loved you the minute I met you. Scratch that, I know I loved you then. I'm sorry I was such an asshole to you." He pressed down on the accelerator harder, urging his car faster along the slick asphalt. "Do you remember the day we met? You were leaning against your car, wearing that hideous yellow sweater. The one with the strawberries embroidered on it. I love that sweater on you. You had to have known that. You were laughing and I remember thinking I had never heard something as perfect as your laugh. I whistled at you, a gentleman, I know." A smile ghosted over his mouth as a huff of laughter trickled out. " Your first words you ever spoke to me were 'Fuck off, creepazoid.' Your voice made me feel like I was hearing for the first time. I knew then that I had to know you, had to learn how you liked your coffee- 5 sugars and 90 percent hazelnut creamer-, what your favorite song was. It's playing on my stereo right now, and it's not as bad as I always tell you. I know you're never going to let me live this down either." He blew through the light that flashed yellow overhead and closed his eyes for a split second. He sucked in a deep breath. "You had my heart from that very first second. Please don't ever doubt that, sunshine. You were my first thought in the morning, my last thought before I fell asleep, and every single one in between. You were it for me, Marley Preston. No one and nothing will ever replace you. Before I forget, there's a blue duffel bag in my closet. Inside it, there's a shoebox. Open it when you're ready. I have to go now. I love you. More than anything."
Through the rain, he could make out the looming building before him and his rage burned hotter than anything he had ever felt. He tossed his phone aside and rubbed his hands down his face. For Marley. He thought to himself, stepping into the downpour. Yanking open the trunk, he stared at the small arsenal that had been tossed haphazardly into it and steadied himself, tucking one handgun into the waistband of his pants and the other into the holster on his ankle. He slung the rifle bag over his shoulder and shrugged a backpack on before slamming the trunk closed.
He stood silent, soaked to the bone, his hair plastered to his face, water dripping into his eyes, staring up at the single light glowing through the window. His hand slammed against the door and a devilish grin split his cheeks as he heard footsteps from behind the door and the latches on the locks being thrown. Behind him, the windows of his car gleamed with faint light as his phone rang.