Chapter 4

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Stan slid open the oval shade of the airplane window, looking down at what the pilot announced were the Wasatch mountains. 

“You mind closing that?” Becky scowled in the aisle seat next to him. “I’m trying to sleep here and the sun shining off the wing is murder.” 

Stan closed the shade halfway. 

“Can I ask a question?” 

“So annoying,” Becky scoffed. “Just ask it.” 

“The day you got shot,” Stan said. “You were going to tell me something.” 

“Nothing.” 

“It sounded important at the time.” 

“You don’t need to know anymore.” 

“Why not?” 

“Because we’re on a plane to Utah and there’s no point telling you something I was only going to tell you so you’d do something you’re already doing.” 

Stan waited for more, but that’s all Becky was going to say on the subject. Covering her eyes with her unbandaged arm, she drifted back to sleep. The plane was already descending to the airport but Stan closed his eyes hoping he’d wake up in bed next to a lithe beauty who would comfort him from this bizarre dream that had him sending an email to his work informing them he resigned effective immediately due to a long-term family emergency. Stan had remarkably few friends that he kept in touch with on a regular basis. His close friends were old friends who only contacted each other a few times a year at most, usually holidays or a week or two after a birthday had slipped by. His acquaintances consisted of ex-girlfriends, prospective girlfriends, girls always up for some action between other girls. The lithe beauty snoring through her nose next to him wasn’t going to wake him from this nightmare; she was the one causing it. 

The flight attendant’s voice chirped over the PA system: “It’s a gorgeous sunny day. Welcome to Utah.” 

Stan was a world away from all the people who wouldn’t even know he was gone. 

   *   *   *   *   * 

Stan helped Becky pull her suitcase off the luggage carousel, only to be shoved aside as she quickly used her good arm to pop open the retractable handle and drag her Samsonite on rollerblade wheels in the direction of short term parking. Stan waited for his bag to loop around before catching up with Becky. 

“What kind of car do we have?” he asked. 

Becky’s stride remained unbroken as she tilted her head the minimum angle required to make eye contact. 

“We have a car,” she replied evenly. “Inside the car is a map. On the map are five towns circled in black ink. All of them are circled twice, except one is circled once. That is the town we are moving to.” 

Stan was impressed with these espionage codes, thinking maybe this could be fun after all. 

“Do we have a house? Apartment?” 

Another head tilt from Becky. 

“That’s still classified information.” 

Stan nodded, “So you don’t know either.” 

What Becky did seem to know was where the car was parked. The clacking of her shoes echoed through the garage as she counted seventeen parking spaces from the elevator. 

“Someone’s on a honeymoon,” Stan observed, pointing to a decades old brown Town and Country station wagon with Just Married scribbled in red lipstick on the back window. 

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