My car bounced over ruts on the macadam. The road twisted around blind curves, switchbacks and round-abouts as it climbed Mount Bigness. I heard the telescope rattle; nothing like subjecting optics to a kidney crunching drive through the country. It was the first clear night in two months and my last grade of the year.
The road curved back 180, dropped down and turned hard right. Trees blocked my sight as the car bounced up and slid over the gravel. A young man appeared in the headlights. I braked. He jumped backward and landed on the hood as the car slid to a stop. He stopped with his face near the windshield. I hugged the steering wheel. My hands shook. My heart raced.
"I ain't got no target on my chest, SpeedRacer." He slid off and rubbed his pale muscles through a plain gray shirt. I opened my window. Cold air rushed in. Chilled me. He lifted the broad-rimmed, black-felt hat to reveal black, curly hair.
"I'm OK. If that's what you want to know." The plain boy came to the passenger door and opened it. "As long as you didn't shit yourself, you can ride me home. It's just a little ways." He pointed up the slope. I nodded still stupid from almost killing him. He directed me past two farms, a couple outbuildings, admired my telescope, and pointed to the hilltop where the astronomy club aimed their instruments skyward. My nerves steadied as we talked.
"That's where I live," he gestured. I saw only headstones.
"It's a home of sorts... I died when an 18-Wheeler hit my carriage. I'm an Evil Editor by day; an angel by night. You hit an oak. Wrecked real bad. You're dying fast. Soon you'll join us."