Letting the phone fall from her hand to the bed, Lily wondered how she had gotten there. The sheets felt rough suddenly, smelled of commercial soap and bleach. Stucco walls with blobs of dried paint on its points met with the ceiling, with its swirls of grit making little patterns that a thousand road weary eyes had followed as they drifted off into fretful sleep in a strange place. She flopped backward and felt the slick nylon of the coverlet under her hand, the thick nylon thread making a quilted look imposing its feel to her skin. Suddenly everything had so much detail. Like her life. What had happened in such a short time? She had been so happy just a few weeks ago, or was it complacent? Accepting her routine as a substitute for fulfillment? She no longer felt tired, she felt restless, anxious, bored. Tired in a way, tired of the chase, tired of the roller coaster of emotions she had been feeling. It seemed as if everything in her life had suddenly rebelled, like a sick stomach and threw its self up all over the place, leaving her to clean it up. Just when she felt she had gotten the last of it, there was another spot demanding attention. Sighing heavily she raised herself up and looked to where her backpack was lying on the floor, right where she left it and she stuck out a bare foot to grab it with her toes and drag it near. She pulled out a piece of beef jerky and chewed laboriously at it while absently staring at the dark green berber carpet. No vaccuum tracks like at your expensive hotels. She could imagine small children pushing small cars across it's surfaces, pretending an old stain was a lake, using a clean licked popsicle stick as a bridge. Maybe one day she would have children. Right now she was having enough trouble caring for herself. Ruffling around for change, she wandered out into the grey early morning, overcast and yet stiflingly hot outside the air conditioned room, to the vending machines for a diet coke. Retrieving her drink she went back to her room, had two cigarettes in quick succession and ran a comb through her hair. There were multiple tangles from riding and she winced as she pulled through the mass impatiently. She braided her hair up this time. She washed her face and wished she hadn't forgotten her toothbrush. A touch of carmex to her windburnt lips, a fresh pair of worn jeans and a white tshirt for the new day. Her socks had come off in her sleep and she searched for a while for one that was elusive and decided screw it, and left the other one on the floor. Let the hotel staff have a pair of socks when the other one came out of hiding. Tucking her pistol in her waistband , she threw on her leather jacket, scooped up her backpack and left a twenty on the nightstand for the maid. In a flash she was in and out of the motel office, the chatty clerk disappointed in her lack of conversation, watching with greedy, envious eyes as she kick started the bike into life and rode away, woman and machine as one beast. The modern horse. She wasn't really awake yet, and failed to notice as a few miles down the road another bike slipped out of a side road and trailed behind her. It would be a long day.
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