Every night I drive across the bridge with missing sections of rail I remember Fey’s question, “Do you ever feel the urge to drive off a bridge?”
Surprised by the question, I asked, “Why would you want to do that?”
“Just to see how it feels.” She stared at me, awaiting my response.
“I don’t,” I responded, affecting the amusement of one who could not relate.
“I do,” she said.
There was a brief moment of silence before something else came up for discussion; a very brief moment that consisted mostly of her staring pensively out of the glass window-wall of the pizza restaurant where we were seated, and me looking across the table intently at her and knowing – with a certainty that comes from having almost perfectly understood a person – that she had left something dark unsaid.
It was some minutes past ten this night when, as I approached the bridge, the thought occurred to me to drive over the edge of the bridge. I chuckled at the thought, like I had many a night before. And then this time, I thought, “Why the hell not!”
On the bridge I pressed down on the accelerator and swung the steering wheel to the right. I went through the edge, and then off the edge and into air.
It felt like absolute freedom for a moment, a very brief moment. And then came absolute panic. I did not want to die, not really; I just wanted happiness, peace. Now, after my car has crashed topside-down onto the tarred road below the bridge and the topside has crumpled against the hardness of the road, as I slip away from the pain and from consciousness, I remember Fey’s question again and how I lied in my response to her and how she seemed not to notice that I was lying and how I lied to myself time after time instead of getting help.
And then I remember nothing…
This is a work of fiction.
Photo by Tanya Pro on Unsplash