Suddenly the cacophony seemed to swell around me, almost overpowering. The sounds of cars zipping by in the other direction, horns blaring as one driver got mad at another, the air from the air conditioner being forced through the vent and the music on the radio all combined in a crushing dissonance. I needed to think but couldn’t with the commotion coming from all directions. I desperately wanted to cover my ears to block out the noise, but instead was limited to switching off the stereo and turning down the fan.
Looking in my mirror again I could see the car in the break down lane was still closing the distance. He was moving slowly, possibly checking the cars in traffic for mine. There was no way to conceal my huge SUV and nowhere for me to go. Anxiously I looked around wondering what I should do. Immediately I spotted a tractor trailer truck not far ahead in the middle lane.
With determination I turned on my directional and was thankful the person next to me let me slide into the lane before him with no hesitation. Five cars now separated me from the only vehicle large enough to hide the Pilot. The traffic to my left was going just slightly faster than I was. I hoped it would be fast enough so I could get to the other side of the truck before he reached me.
I signaled again but the car to my left refused to slow down. Frustration boiled inside me just before the next driver opened a gap large enough so I could move over. I turned to look behind me but couldn’t see the car any longer. Impatiently I crept up on the bumper of the car in front of me. At the angry glance I received I backed off slightly, tapping my hand on the steering wheel to relieve some of the tension.
Gradually we inched closer to the truck, until finally I was engulfed in its shadow.
I wasn’t sure how long I would need to stay concealed. I didn’t want to miss the next exit but it was more important to remain hidden at least until he passed. I slowed my pace down to match the speed of the truck, peeking in the rear view mirror to offer a silent apology to the person behind me who had been kind enough to let me into the lane.
I tried to breathe deeply to calm my growing hysteria. I checked the clock. One minute had passed. How long should I wait? Nervously I thumped the wheel in a rhythm that matched the beating of my heart. Five minutes? Ten? If my estimation was correct and the exit had been 15 minutes ahead earlier then I wouldn’t have ten minutes to spare.
Another minute ticked by as I tried to decide what to do.
This post is in response to the daily writing prompts Cacophony and is part of something longer I’m working on.
This post is a part of the story about the ex and comes after Who Would Drive So Recklessly?