This was not the story I wanted to write, only a simplified, compromised version. The original idea was more complex but gave me nightmares and in the end I did not have the skill to deliver it in the time I finally allotted (while waiting for a rabbit stew to cook on the evening of the deadline) and possibly don't have full stop.
The title is from a Stereophonics song. I can't remember which at the moment but they are one of the more underrated big acts from my college music habits.
Things I managed to pull off okay - I wanted three roads, three different atmospheres, three stages. I also wanted to undermine the idea of a road as a metaphor for freedom. Some of the descriptions I quite like. Rain. Suburbia. Sunburn. But ultimately, it was a compromise.
My biggest failure was my viewpoint. I wanted Allie to be unreliable. I wanted more ambiguity in their relationship. Is he really a controlling bastard or is she actually immature and selfish? Is she perhaps a little unstable and doesn't know it, while he confusedly keeps trying to make their relationship work, so that the 'shock' ending becomes properly tragic? I don't think I managed that at all.
Unpleasantly through trying to work out how to write it, I ended up projecting the unstable narrator thing onto myself in dreams in which I was mad and a spectator on my madness, doing horrible acts and unable to stop. Pretty yuk.
Oh, and if anyone is interested in the more successful act of creativity that evening, the rabbit stew was about 1/2 a rabbit chopped up (with bones), browned in a pan then put in an ovenproof dish with some fresh rosemary, garlic, pepper, a slug or two of white wine, some diced potatoes, shallots, lemon juice, lemons and some chicken stock. It was baked in the oven for about 45 mins, then another 15 with foil off the top.
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