- move from one place or point to another; travel.
- leave; depart.
For me and Steve, it means to get high. You wanna go? I’ll text him. Hey, are you going? he’ll say to me on the phone when I’m sitting across from my parents at a restaurant. Or even when we’re walking through the mall, surrounded by people who wouldn’t care anyways, I’ll turn to him and say, time to go yet?
Good lingo, isn’t it? And it makes sense. We’re being transported. Departing.
We’re in my car, the windows barely cracked open in the parking lot of his family’s apartment complex, about to go. The sound of the lighter clicks in Steve’s hand as he brings the flame to the edge of the blunt, sparking it up. We haven’t gone in almost a month due to a self-mandated break. It’s the kind of thing where you don’t let yourself do something for a while so it’s that much better when you go back to it. Diminishing marginal returns, in economic terms. That’s what Steve and I are studying at the university. Finals just finished a week ago.
Steve puff puff and passes the blunt to me. Roasty, herbal smoke spreads between us, seeping toward the back of the car, metallic flowers on fire. Hotbox? I ask. Of course! He says. The feeling of this high is like a color between purple and red, throbbing secretly within everything. Puff, puff. Pass. Wonder why I like this feeling? Starting to get high. The dust on the windshield sharpens into tiny black specks of sand that I would never notice without the clarity of THC.
The blunt burns evenly, we tap the ashes into the jumbo-sized 7-11 cup that’s leaned crooked, the bottom of its ass too big to fit into the holder. Getting higher.
I sense someone. I sense someone coming! Someone’s coming! I think. I heard footsteps approaching from behind. I mean, from the side. From Steve’s side! Outside his window, no one’s there. Phew. Turning around, I see… the poorly-lit parking lot and the short apartment buildings. Grey on everything. Not the best location to smoke, maybe, but Steve lives right there, and we were a little too excited to not just do it as soon as I picked him up. I guess, Puff, puff. Pass. Smoking. Definitely High now!
We cough. Oh damn, Steve says. That stuff strong. Where you wanna go? Movies. Yes, the movies. Places to hide and trip out. A place to hide and trip out. The movies. Let’s go.
Turn the engine on. Reverse. Backing out.
Bam! Rumbling through the car. Shit! I—shit! I hit a car behind us, backing out. Damnit. Let’s get the hell out of here! Put the car into drive and about to punch the gas to get the hell out of here!
DUDE, there’s someone there. Steve: DUDE. They’re coming out.
Lady yelling at us. What the fuck!? What the fuck is your guys’ problem?
Fuck! Shit! Fuck! God… Fuck!
Lady yelling at us. What the fuck is your problem!?
A man in a loose wife-beater, outside my window. Eyeing me down through the window. A shaved head and tattoos along his neck, His chin high. Glaring at me.
I’m so sorry! Opening the door, I say, so sorry. I didn’t know you guys were there. I’m so sorry!
What the fuck? Lady with tied up hair. Guy in wife-beater. Don’t play stupid. You guys think this is funny?
No I swear. Steve’s hand on his head. Like he’s, wiping off sweat. I didn’t know you guys were back there. I was just backing out and forgot to look.
What the fuck? Lady with dark-brown hair. Don’t play stupid. You think this is funny, huh? We were just trying to enjoy our evening and you two think it’s funny to—
No. I swear! I’m so sorry! I didn’t know. I was just backing out.
In the car, an ounce of weed, can they smell it? If the cops come…. fuck!
Look! Our insurance will take care of this.
Insurance? Lady dipping head forward like what the fuck are you talking about?! It’s just a small scratch!
Oh. Let me see. Steve and I circling around my car to see theirs.
Just a small scratch, really?! A white mark a couple inches maybe below the left headlight, below the left headlight.
Scratching head, Well, can we just give you guys some cash then? Like, can you guys just take some cash or something?
Searching through our wallets. Only have ten bucks. Steve has no cash.
Is ten okay?
Hell no! Go to the ATM then and get a twenty.
Okay, will be right back. Turning around to walk back to the car.
What the fuck? You think we’re stupid?
What? We’ll come back. We really will. (We really will!)
You think we’re stupid?
What? You don’t trust me?
One of you has to stay here.
Okay, okay. Fine. Steve says, He’ll stay.
ATM machine. Hand shaking sliding the card in. Just need to get out before cops…
Driving extra super careful. In case of cops.
Definitely smoking after this…
We changed our mind, the lady saying she wants the twenty and the ten for 30 total.
What? Are you serious?
Sorry! Changed our minds.
But you said— you shouldn’t..
What? What you wanna say?
Nothing. Nothing. Shaking my head, walking backwards after handed the money to her. You shouldn’t..
What? I shouldn’t what? Huh?
Driving away. Silence in the car. Shaking my head. Driving away, toward the freeway. Green light, left arrow. Turning toward the onramp.
Yo watch out! Jumping out of his seat, Steve yells. Shit! Watch out!
Hit the brakes a guy’s crossing the street, throwing his hands up over his face. Like I’m about to hit him.
I hit the brakes. Throwing his hands up over his face he’s crossing the street like I’m about to hit him. About to hit him!
Red lights. Blue lights. Flashing swirling atop police cars. Everywhere. Sirens.
Andy Tu lives in California, where he probably won’t be after a year. His recent work has appeared in The Fiction Pool and The Colored Lens.