Going the Distance | A Micro Fiction

Photo by Susanne Nilsson.

{ 360 words }

I can tell she’s uneasy, maybe even scared.  It’s all in the eyes.  That’s where the truth always lies in people, in their eyes.  Sure, she’s going to play it cool and pretend that there’s nothing wrong, but I know better, which is funny considering I’ve only known the girl for three days.  But I know.  Which is a testament to the strange bond I feel between us.  We’ve been on the road for three long ass hours now and, between long stretches of napping, she’s barely spoken a word.  To say I’m worried about her is understating the fact. I glance over at her, careful not to let my eyes leave the road for more than a second or two at a time.

“You sure you’re all right?”

“Yeah, I’m fine…just thinking.”



“Don’t be vague, girl.  I hate that.”

“I’m thinking that I might’ve made a mistake.”

“Oh yeah?”


“Concerning what?”

“Our little trip.”

“I wouldn’t call it little…you are running away.”

“Shit, don’t you think I know that?  That’s exactly what I’m thinking about.”


“Well, I think I messed up.”


She looks over at me, her eyes mostly hidden under the veil of her bangs.  Her face is solemn.  And then she says, almost in a whispers, “I think I should go back.”

“I don’t think that’s wise, girl.  That guy’s a goddamn abusive asshole, he’s just going to hurt you some more.”

She gives no response.  She knows I’m right.

“I really don’t think that’d be in your best interest. Definitely not mine ‘cause he’s gotta be shitty you ran off with me.  I’m sorry, darlin’, but if he sees me with you he’ll be fit to kill my ass, and I won’t back down from him, or let him put his fucking hands on you again. Sorry, but I’m involved now, and that’s my part in this. Yeah. I’m involved.”

She lets a moment to two pass, making me think she’s giving what I said some serious thought, that maybe she’s allowing her better judgment to take over. I couldn’t be more wrong.

“Please…just turn the car around…drive back to Indy.”

Written: February 28, 1999.

Copyright © 1999-2016 by Brandon L. Rucker.  All Rights Reserved.

Photo by Susanne Nilsson. Copyright © 2014.

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