Outside The Diner

Outside the diner, the night air tempered the coffee running through my veins, winding my brain down from overdrive. So much had happened so quickly, I found myself simultaneously repulsed—and intrigued. I paused a moment under the awning out front to try to clear my head, to understand not the answers at this point, but merely the questions.

Why had this stranger come into my life? Why me? What was going on? Why was he trying to lead me on some kind of chase?

And why was I letting him?

For a moment, I thought about going back into the diner to recover my phone number from the waitress, then I realized that the stranger probably already had it. After all, he knew where I worked, and where I lived.

Then suddenly I realized that he might be there, outside, watching me. He had left the diner, but had he left the scene?

My eyes went to the street, and at first I merely saw the sea of taillights streaming past in the early evening traffic.

Then I noticed the taxi, engine idling, parked midway down the block.

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