I rolled into the driveway silently. It was eerie how quiet the car was, and when I slipped out of it, I felt a rush of renewed admiration for the vehicle, as if it was the invisible jet from the Justice League of America. Yes, yes, I could almost see with childlike imagination it disappearing into air and white outlines, as I could thirty-five years ago romping with my sister after Saturday morning cartoons. But I stepped a step back, and it was still there, just a giant toy on my driveway.
I practically bounded to the door, and when I flung it open Sandy, who was unsuspectingly passing from the living room, gave little yip.
“Jesus! Where the fuck did you come from?”
She bobbed and weaved to one side as I went to peck her in the lips. I caught her on the side instead, and she exhaled a long stream of mentholated smoke. I caught from a sidelong glance her cigarette perched between two fingers, a long burn of ash threatening to fall off.
“I just threw out all the ashtrays, Yam Yam, what are you…?”
Sandy extricated herself past me balletically, and knocked the ash out the door while simultaneously peering out into the yard.