Well, this is a weird one. But I say that every time, don’t I?
I’m not sure I can explain exactly where in my imagination this one came from, apart from the requirements of the July Flash Fiction Draw prompt: a comedy, set in the trunk of a car, including a vacuum cleaner (which makes a late entrance in the story). And since that defied explanation, I don’t really explain it in the story, either. Hopefully, it’s funny.
Let’s find out, shall we?
A Trunk Full of Love
You meet the most interesting people in the backs of cars. And by backs of cars, I mean the trunk.
I don’t know what it is about me that makes people think you know, he really belongs in the trunk of my late model American luxury sedan, but whatever it is, I find myself stuffed into them a lot. I think the first one was a Chevy Caprice Classic—roomy, although the suspension left something to be desired. Most recently, it was a burgundy Mercury Grand Marquis, and I have to say, that was the most comfortable, smooth ride I’ve remembered in a long time.
It’s amazing how often I’m not the only person in the trunk, either. I’ve met everyone from high school math teachers to visiting heads of state, the latter of which is highly unusual when you consider that I live in the Midwest, hardly a diplomatic hub. I’ve also met accountants, custodians, a physicist, a semi-famous author, and a really famous singer.
It’s also how I met Kevin.
I was already in the trunk when he was bundled in next to me. This was the Grand Marquis, by the way. Lucky for that, as Kevin is a rather large guy. It was his first time in a trunk, which kind of surprised me, later. He has the sort of face, you see, that makes you instantly think there’s a guy who belongs in my trunk. Needless to say, he was kind of nervous.
“Does this go on for very long?”
I shrugged, which he couldn’t see, being that we were inside a closed trunk and there really isn’t all that much light. I told him I thought there was a trunk light somewhere behind his head if he could find the switch, but he couldn’t maneuver around to reach it.
“Sometimes. Not usually. Do you have an appointment you have to get to?”
“No, it’s just….”
As first times go, it wasn’t the best trunk to be in. I’ve been in some where they have comfortable pillows, snacks and bottled water, But, it could have been worse. It was clean, at least. I’ve been in some that were drafty, damp, rusty. The most uncomfortable involved lying on top of a spare tire.
“You’re not claustrophobic, are you?”
“No,” he replied, his voice rising in pitch suddenly. He cleared his throat and, in a lower tone, said, “At least, I don’t think so. I hope not.”
“Probably would’ve kicked in by now,” I said.
“You sound like this is old hat to you.” His voice had the sound of a smile, even if I couldn’t see it. That’s the thing when you spend a lot of time in the trunks of cars. You start tuning in to the way people talk more. At least, I did.
But that was a long time ago. And uncharacteristically, we were in there a long time. I think the driver may have forgotten about us, because when the trunk lid finally opened, he held the nozzle of a vacuum cleaner in one hand and we were in the lot of one of those automated carwash places. I don’t think he was expecting us to come climbing out.
I wasn’t expecting Kevin to ask me on a date, either. And I certainly wasn’t expecting him, a few months later, to ask me to marry him. You hear about those kinds of fairy tale stories but they’re always happening to other people. I guess I know better now. Dreams can come true.