Flat Tire

Side by side on a wide almost empty highway, Hope and Bliss drove together once more. Their engines started awkwardly upon leaving the crossroad where they met, but now they drive slowly but more comfortably with each other.

Fate passed them by so fast causing turmoil on their joyride. Hope suddenly stopped bewildered as if he got into a crash. Bliss stopped and helped him get to the shoulder. They found out that Hope got a flat tire. It made Hope sad because he just recently used his spare tire. Now he cannot go on. Bliss started her engines and zoomed out of sight. Hope thought that maybe she has gone to look for help. He stayed there in the wide empty highway waiting for her to come back.

Minutes turned to hours and hours turned to days. He has been endlessly counting the stars at night and dreaming of rain during the day. One time he cried out her name but she never answered, not even a soul was in sight. A few more days passed, someone drove by and saw Hope listening to his stereo trying to look cool under the heat of the midday sun. Prudence stepped out of his car and asked if he was in any trouble. Hope responded that he was just waiting for someone to come back, he did not need any help. Prudence kept him company for a while and talked about their adventures from the past. But the time for him to leave had come, and so Hope was alone once more.

He has witnessed many sunsets and sunrises as he waited for Bliss’s return. Seldom, he sees cars passing him by, some stop to offer him help but he turns them down and they leave him be.

One night, as Hope was again counting the stars in an empty night sky, a familiar engine sound filled the emptiness of the highway. He looked around and saw a big car pulling up the shoulder near his car. Storge came down and, unlike everyone else who saw Hope, asked what he was doing and if she can join in. Hope told her he was trying to hunt for stars. Storge thought it would be fun to do something weird for a change — seeing that the night sky was empty as if the stars were intentionally hiding — and insisted she join in the fun. Hope thought it was okay and so they gazed upon the empty sky and tried their hardest to look for stars.

Storge started to tell Hope of stories about crossroads and other places she had been to. He thought she was retelling his own story because of the similarities they have. After Storge’s story, he told her about his. Silence has dawned upon them after Hope has said his piece. Storge stood up and went to her car. Hope asked where she was off to. All she said to him was that maybe their stories are similar, but there might also be a chance that their endings would be different. Hope looked at her as she smiled softly and then zoomed out of sight.

The sun is peeking through the horizon, it is about to wake. Hope stared balnkly at his flat tire as he tried to absorb the words Storge left. Slowly, he paced toward his car and touched the trunk cover. He took a deep breath then started pushing his car forward. He pushed harder and harder and a while later his car started moving forward.

No more time for counting stars in an empty night sky. No more voice to call out for Bliss to return. Hope was empty and lost, he was all dried up. As the last words of Storge sank deeper and deeper to his mind and slowly dripped to his heart, he began to feel numb. Now, all his mind could ever think of is to push the car forward to wherever he may find help all on his own.

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Crossroad

Hope and Bliss drove together on a wide highway. An exhilarating joyride no one can ever erase from their memories. Hope has always longed for belongingness and he found it in Bliss. She stayed with him for a long ride and made Hope the happiest person in the world.

But they came to a triple fork on the road, two narrow strips of land and one wide enough for two yet filled with uncertain dangers. As in life, decisions have to be made and their naive minds — or maybe just Hope’s — have lead them to part ways. Although a promise has been made, since then it felt like the journey has ended.

As Hope traveled along the road alone he has driven to many other places. He took a left on a one-way street and went down a steep slope. Turned around and around in U-turns and paid a good sum for toll fees. Throughout his journey he has traveled along different roads with different people, but most of the time alone. However, things changed all so suddenly with one fateful encounter.

Bliss was there parked in the middle of the crossroad all alone. When Hope saw her his heart sank. He felt a spark but it was faint, full of uncertainty like the way she smiled upon seeing him. While slowly turning to a halt, he battled the feeling in order to keep himself from exploding. Yes the spark was weak, but it was enough to rekindle that old flame. All over his body, he shook as if he was running down a steep slope with the speed of a hundred and twenty. Finally he looked at her once again and said ‘hi’. Awkwardness filled the empty space between them. They stood there, staring at each other, not minding all the other cars driving by.

A memory flashed in Hope’s mind. The pact they made before the parting of their ways. He wondered, is this it or is this mere coincidence? They promised to drive together again when their paths cross and when both are alone. This was that very scenario but something seemed to be holding them back. What it was exactly, no one knows. But Hope was filled with joy. The spark has become a tongue of fire inside his heart. He looked at her eyes trying to figure out what was inside her mind. He wished he knew.

The trip was long and vicious but it was all worth it for it has given them both an opportunity to grow. Now that they have bumped into each other, Hope wonders if the promise once made will come true or not.