Paradise by the Dashboard Lights Chapter 4: Red Zeppelin

Morning came. The upside of it was that the sunlight was lessened down in the basement. I rubbed at the side of my head, feeling the incipient headache. I reached out before remembering I hadn’t poured out a bottle of water for myself the night before. I despaired momentarily until my eyes focused enough to find that there was, indeed, a large jug by the bed. I grabbed it gratefully, drank, guzzled the better part of a gallon. I let out a sigh of deep and abiding relief, and leaned back in the downstairs bed.

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Chapter 5: Hey, Pal, Why The Long Face?

Sad things are sadder when contrasted with happy things. This is probably a self-evident statement, but it hits me hard, from time to time. I remembered- of all things- a political comic about an exiled African prince, who was forced to stay at a McDonald’s while dealing with the loss of his family’s kingdom. The comic, of a well-dressed young man holding a burger, with an expression of soft despair on his face, stuck with me. The fast food restaurant seemed to add to the deep poignancy. The absurdity of the contrast heightened the tragedy.

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Paradise by the Dashboard Lights Chapter 2: Jumping Jack Knife

I woke up to the sound of a crashing platter. I sat up immediately, and was upstairs in a few seconds. A petite Asian woman with messy red hair stood across from Roy, holding up a frying pan in a threatening manner. Roy had both hands up, expression innocent and nervous. A metal platter had fallen to the ground between the two of them, and was still rolling.

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