Seven Minutes Early

“Well, I’d say we're coming up on our 10-year anniversary. What’s traditional, china? I hope you got me something good.” John said trying to lighten the mood. He looked over at Mark but he didn’t laugh, he was distracted, thinking hard about something.

“Man, not even a courtesy laugh. Lighten up! It's Friday, let’s just get home and relax, deal with whatever you're thinking about on Monday.” John was concentrating on driving now. The car had more likeness to a submarine than a car in the dark and rain.

But Mark didn’t respond right away, still evidently lost in his own world and they continued on in silence. Minutes passed in silence until Mark spoke up, apparently having come to a conclusion about whatever he was mulling over.

“Hey, I need you to take me somewhere, to a friend’s house. I need to pick up something.” Mark stared out the window as he spoke, his voice was raspy, like phlegm was caught in his throat but he made no attempt at clearing it.

“Yeah, sure okay.” John had never heard Mark speak of any other friends. In fact, John had always found the thought comforting that he was Mark’s only good friend.

The two of them drove on as Mark dictated directions, eventually ending up in Mark’s own neighborhood to John's surprise. The house that they pulled in front of was a two-story modern home that seemed extremely pricey. All the lights were off except one room on the second floor that looked like a bedroom. There were smaller homes nearby but those were all dark as well giving the area an empty, lifeless feeling.





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