Friday, May 2, 2014

Revisiting The D Chronicles - (Men): Plans

Wayne Hadley -

Sometimes life doesn't go the way you plan. In fact plans are often some of the worse ways we can lie to ourselves. Do we change what we planned because of this? I don't think so. You see, I never planned to pick up the pen and produce fiction again. I was done with the writing and can't explain why I'm compelled to start again, only that there's words and emotions where only emptiness was. The hardest part was making the choice to change my mind. Ask anyone who's come to confront something they didn't think was possible to ever want again... and then deciding that it's more possible than not. Anyhow, here's a story about changing plans and being surprised that you actually don't mind changing them. 

Enjoy if you've never read! You can buy the whole ebook of the D men here.

Kisses, m.


Tristan Allan wasn’t going anywhere for fun, at least that’s what he thought when he left the house exactly at 6pm for Sacramento. He didn’t want to drive to Sacramento after work that Thursday evening. No not at all. In fact Tristan much preferred to spend his evenings getting lost in a book with a nice tall glass of water. But on this particular evening his presence was required in the Northern California city for an appointment that had little to do with him. It had to do with a small request that had been made by his mother. And although at times he found her to be tiresome, Tristan often found it more difficult to refuse any of his mother’s requests. This time he was to pick up her newest Curio doll from the vendor arriving at Gate 20 of the Sacramento International Airport promptly at 12am. As ridiculous as it sounded he indulged her nonetheless.

Tristan Allan had always liked books. Especially how the endings were already predestined to occur. The timings of things involved happened in a set order. It was comforting to know how it all ended made sense. Especially since things that happened in life, like a change in routine, rarely made sense.

As a creature of habit and a man of pressing routine, Tristan rarely changed his habits but when he did so it was a matter of occasion. If it was a bit out of his ordinary it just wouldn’t do. But on this occasion when he so desperately preferred to stay in he went against the grain and changed his routine. Tristan thought to himself that the drive wouldn’t be so bad. He had often admired the cool colors of sunset that danced with the shadows of the landscape and with a little bit of music and a small bottle of water he set out for a drive.

And it wasn’t so bad until the need for gasoline registered on the dash. Long after the cool colors of sunset had faded, somewhere outside of Modesto the light flicked on while there were No Surprises from Radiohead coming out of the radio. With less than two hours until reaching his final destination, Tristan pulled off the highway.

The lights of the station were bright and blinding when he pulled in. Figuring it would be a quick stop he needlessly left the keys in the switch and the radio playing while he pumped the gas. Everything around him on the island was blanketed in a white hue. In the blackness across the lot a small glint of light reflected from the small unlit headlamp of a broke-down Coupe Deville with a burnt out interior. While looking at this something inside of Tristan grew uneasy but he resisted the feeling to finish pumping the gas.

Uneasiness never quite passes with the effortlessness that it arrives. And Tristan Allan had more than a slight reason to be nervous because what happened next happened faster than he could react. A long cool woman with quickness in her step came forward out of the dark. Three. Two. One. The cool steel of a revolver finds itself face to face with his deadpan stare. Behind the revolver she insists that he get back into the car and…

 “Drive.” She says

And Tristan Allan likes the way she says it. There is a sound of authority in her voice that makes him want to do what she says. It’s not that he likes to be controlled but there was definitely something about her that was completely different. And he didn’t seem to mind.

It didn’t matter that she wore a sidearm and kept the revolver between her legs cocked and pointed at him. In fact the way she stayed cool and collected when she originally made her demands had put him at ease. As he drove the car his head remained focused on the road while the corner of his eye watched her carefully.

She sat neatly with her black dress lifted just up to the top of her thighs and Tristan wanted to imagine what it would be like if she moved it back further. He felt little concern about the weapon resting there when he thought it. He wasn’t himself when he thought this as Tristan would never allow his mind to wander to these dark places. She was like a book of mystery sitting next to him but despite his efforts Tristan couldn’t read her.

Somewhere outside of Lodi heading further north towards his destined appointment Tristan realized that he’d strayed far outside of his normal routine leaving behind his scheduled itinerary and it didn’t bother him in the slightest. By this time he should have already changed the music to the third disc in his collection and been listening to track twelve on repeat for the third time. Instead he was preoccupied by the woman in his passenger seat who continued to insist him forward into the night and the music had long ago ceased from playing.

Tristan liked when the mysterious woman talked to him. She spoke with a slight force in her voice. It wasn’t the sound of anger exactly, but there was no mistaking that she was firm in her intent. She kept telling him about the direction of the road and calmly motioning him to change lanes while increasing or decreasing speed. Occasionally when she spoke he would turn and nod his head. He was insistent on making eye contact with the woman. In the hopes that she would reveal more than her instructions with a glance he looked over. Again… and again.

Although it seemed like they’d spoke volumes to each other they had not. The woman never revealed the actions of her evening and life before sitting next to him, and she never listened to the words that didn’t come out of his mouth. The words that he’d never spoke but only thought to say to her filled his mind. When truly the only thing he said to her was “Do what you want” when she had asked about lowering the windows.

With twenty-minutes away from his original destination, the woman tells Tristan to pull over. Tristan can barely understand what it means when she doesn’t want to continue. He follows her orders and thinks that he would rather continue than stop. Stopping could mean something new and he had barely grown accustomed to company in the car. When the car ceased and the dust cleared in the darkness surrounding the beacons of light from the headlamps, she said to Tristan slow and surely. “Stay or go?”

The revolver cocks once again and she waits for answer. Although Tristan thinks, “This is no way to get an answer out of anyone” he sits and lets her stay in control to explain. She tells him if he stays they need to keep driving until she reaches Oregon before leaving this car behind. If he stays for the ride she’ll let him go with his car then. Tristan wants to tell her about his prearranged moment at Gate 20 when she speaks but all he does is nod and listen until she stops.

Some place near mile marker 34, when she stops talking it’s his turn to be in control. Tristan Allan looks over at the beautiful woman and wanted to wonder why she picked him when it didn’t matter anymore.
It’s Tristan’s turn to reverse the roles and become the character who speaks with a firm tone. A resolved decision must come from a choice that changes the end of his story.

Unlike the book the mysterious woman had not been predestined to go with Tristan. Their meeting had been up to chance and had he gone to another gas station or stopped in another town, she wouldn’t be with him. Here before him sat the most fun his life had seen outside of a book and he hadn’t planned or found comfort in knowing about it ahead of time. This woman had been the one thing out of his routine and he hadn’t realized before this instant that she’d distracted him from worrying how it all fit into a routine.

No matter how close they sat to the airport, the clock in the dashboard flashed 12:33 am and just like that Tristan realized that his tiresome mother and her Curio Doll wouldn’t be waiting anymore, but the Oregon border would be. While thinking of all this Tristan Allan came to a decision that would change his life forever and when he looked into the woman’s eyes once again somehow he didn’t mind that his choice wasn’t predestined or part of a pressing routine. And with that Tristan Allan decided to... Drive.

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