A couple months ago it was raining like a motherfucker. A dense fog is rolling across the town like a murder mystery. It’s pitch black, somehow darker than usual, and I’m driving through an especially wooded part of town. There’s a roadside memorial hidden in the bushes that I pass by every day. I start to think about how it’s unusual that after all this time, I don’t know who it’s for, this person that died steps away from my house. What’s more, it’s always perfectly maintained, though I’ve never seen a single soul nearby.
Out of the corner of my eye I see something glimmering up ahead, silvery, human-like gliding over the wet road. I think of the story my sister told me, about how she was driving down that road one night and saw a man waiting at the bus stop, a man that seemed somewhat transparent suddenly disappear. I search the road again, looking for a familiar shape to disprove my fears. The figure is gliding, it can’t be a deer, or a jogger, the movement is far too fluid. What about speed? It’s far too fast to be human, and moving against the flow of traffic, in the opposing lane, on wet roads, in a dense fog, on a pitch black night on a road with a history of accidents? A death sentence for any cyclist.
As I speed up, the distance narrows. The reckoning is near, once I crest the hill, regardless of what is or is not out there, I will have to face it head on. I glance over quickly, terrified of what I might see. Can it be unseen? Can I live with whatever knowledge I am about to possess? Do I really want the truth?
There is a black teenage boy dressed in a white hoodie and Sponge Bob Square Pants pajama pants rocking the fuck out to whatever he is listening to on his Beats by Dre headphones while doing 45 MPH on an electric scooter.