I know the way by rote, the way the road curves over to the right after the yellow sign, the way it contours itself to the woods on the left. I move fluidly with it, pressing the accelerator through the turns and tapping on the brake when I notice the speedometer creeping higher and higher…
I’m caught by surprise, then, when the fog begins slithering its way in. At first I don’t notice; perhaps I am not paying attention as well as I should be. The turns ahead are all at once more difficult to see, and I have trouble making out what’s ahead. I slow the car down as the haziness becomes almost too much to bear.
“What are you doing? You have to move faster if we’re going to get there on time,” I hear from my passenger. He had only been in my life now for about a year, but it felt like a lifetime. As cliché as it was, I knew him better than he knew himself, and he me. We worked.
“It’s just a little hard to see with all this damned fog. It makes me nervous. If you don’t like the way I drive, you should’ve gotten behind the wheel yourself.”
“Ugh,” he rolls his eyes, reaches into the backseat and cracks a beer.
“Hey you can’t drink in here! This is my car. No way! Get rid of it.”
“Relax. There’s no one around. I’ll dump it before we get to the real road.”
Who was this person that I had thought I knew? Right before my eyes, but without my noticing, he had changed. He had become this. And it scared me, so I wanted desperately to slow down, but feared it was too late. I couldn’t see myself hurtling toward a cliff.