Kyle and Dylan scanned the side of the road with quiet intensity as the Mustang slowed to inch-by-inch progression. The high beam was engulfed in a vastness of night, tempered by a hint of moon rising over the ridge. There was a good chance they had already passed the turn off…. “Shit––I think that was it. Can you go back a few meters?” Dylan put the car into reverse and pulled alongside what was distinctly a vehicle track, though unmarked and not quite half the length of the car. He pulled in reverse across both lanes and eased the Mustang along its forward course with incremental slowness, beams still on high––clearly expecting the kind of quick disintegration that had occurred to the track after Beatty.
The Mustang’s grip on the road held steady as they skirted the foot of the ridge. After a quarter mile a gentle rise began––now climbing steadily, the ride grew turbulent as larger rocks and uneven indentations appeared. This was nothing compared with Beatty––the road was well maintained and Dylan gradually increased the speed to an appropriate level of recklessness. Kyle, having reluctantly gone along with Dylan’s plan, again felt a distinct sense of exhilaration. It was not simply anticipation of a reunion with the mystic herb after a long hiatus, under a primitive ooze of stars. It was the opportunity of reclaiming friendship at its primal foundation. The promise of finding a sense of shared cause––what this trip was really all about. Of reestablishing connections that had been submerged over time, in an inevitable staccato of jobs, girlfriends, self-inflicted injuries, addictions.