for a few moments they hugged silence comfortably and she drove his car exactly the way he always knew she would, just a little too fast in her high-heels and entirely self assured, composed and beautiful and oblivious to how he’d steal tiny glances out of the corner of his eye just to watch the way she shifted gears or checked her mirror before zipping into the next lane. he’d never let a girl drive his car before and hadn’t been able to feign surprise when she’d asked — or, kind-of asked.
“i’ll drive,” she’d said matter-of-factly, tying the belt to her new little jacket as her heels clicked across the parking lot. “i mean, your car.” she put her palm out for the keys, twinkling eyes and playful smile. she was testing him, as though there were any doubt as to whether or not he’d give her anything she wanted. perhaps she hadn’t realized that yet? but there was the pounding heart…he was sure she could hear that, the riot inside him every time she showed up with his dreams just right. he’d been a little nervous to ask her to go out tonight but she seemed as collected as always, coming out of her apartment with her hair down and bright eyes and robbing him of any desire to ever bring her home again. he’d dropped the keys into her hand and she grinned.
“really? you’ll let me?” a youthfulness, an almost-interest…
“sure, why not. can you drive standard?” he’d asked.
“of course i can,” she said. “but you can drive home. my feet will hurt by then.”
“deal,” he’d agreed. and it was all perfect, watching her from the passenger seat of his own car, looking every bit the way a girl should look. he knew he’d never get to sleep tonight, not after having to drop her off with her blisters and tired eyes and watch her walk away from him, up the steps to her apartment in the dark and leaving him behind with her ghost, the way she always did.

“listen to this part,” she said, turning up the radio. “this song is about me, you know. he always writes about me.” she was laughing and her hair was blowing across her face, and without thinking he brushed it away, catching them both off guard. he tucked it softly behind her ear, and she said nothing…but her smile…

he folded it away, silently, in the glove compartment for now. his mind was too full already.
“and i was thinking i would like to see your eyes open up real wide the minute that you see me…”
“that’s it,” she said, swerving a little and giggling, happy. “that’s how it should be.”
from that moment on, he loved the counting crows.