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Monday, January 21, 2019

Microstory 1021: Florence

When I was very young, I would watch my parents get drunk every week. And when they did that, they would always act stupid, and often break something. The next morning, they would promise themselves they would never do it again, but if it was Saturday, they would be right back at it the next night, and if it was Sunday, they would do it again on Friday. I don’t know what happened to them that made them stop, but one day, we packed up, and moved to Blast City. They have been the epitome of civil ever since, so much so that no one until today has ever known anything about our real past. Anyway, either because I saw how bad things can get when you drink, or I saw how much better my parents were when they got sober, I don’t do it myself. In fact, I’m infamous for being a designated driver. I tell everyone I know that, if they ever find themselves drunk away from home, they can always call me for a ride. No one ever takes me up on that, partially because the town itself is literally small, so it’s not that hard to walk from one end to the other, but also because no one really pays attention to me. We also have a couple drivers for one of those ride-sourcing companies, and they kinda need the money, so that’s fine. Well, I don’t know exactly what went down, but Viola took me up on my offer once. She called me from some bar in Coaltown, totally wasted. I could barely understand what she was saying, and when she tried to text me the address, it wasn’t even comprehensible. I had to ask a random guy walking down the street which bar she would be talking about. Well, this was the dead of winter; probably the coldest night of the year. Yeah, it was, we had that winter storm that took school off the table for, like, a week. You weren’t here yet, I guess, but it was real bad. So bad, that the ice ran us off the road, and into a tree. The force of the crash, plus the weight of the snow, knocked a branch right on top of my car. I couldn’t even start it again, so there we were, freezing our asses off, alone in the dark. I called a tow service, but since the conditions were no better throughout the county, it was a long time before anyone could show up. Fortunately, ever the girl scout, I was prepared with emergency water, a med kit, and blankets. We ended up crawling into the backseat, and cuddling together for body heat. Before you stick your head in the gutter, nothing happened. She passed out thirty minutes before the truck arrived, and hauled us out. She was so messed up that she didn’t even remember that any of it happened, but I didn’t have to prove it to her, because I took pictures for insurance purposes. I suppose I have the magic touch, because according to a lot of classmates, she didn’t have one more drop of alcohol the rest of her life. That’s what really gets me about this whole thing, because if they found drugs in her system, she was not the one who put them there. I don’t believe it. There’s something we don’t know about what happened by the river that fateful day, and I don’t understand why they seem to not be trying to figure it out.

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