Excerpt 34

Carter downed the bottle and reached for another. It left a ring of condensation on the table. He smeared it with his hand.

“Fuck you guys,” he said. “I’m going home.” He got up, lumbering out into the thickening foot traffic on the darkening street, the bottle dangling at his side. No one stopped him.

“You didn’t help her at all,” Kak said, keeping her eyes on Rudy while raising her hand at the passing waitress. “Didn’t even try.”

Why should I? That was the question. What came out was, “Maybe you’ve had enough to drink.”

“Maybe you should kiss my ass,” she shot back. The letters in her words smudging like wet newsprint.

“This arrangement might work better,” he said, “if I knew what you wanted.”

“What I want,” she said, rising unsteadily, backing into a woman walking past, “is to dance.”

The woman spun around. “What’s your problem?”

“I’m glad you asked,” Kak said. “I think Thomas Merton said it best. Life can only be understood backwards. But it must be lived forwards.” She puzzled a second. “Or was it Kierkegaard?”

“Idiot,” the woman said, moving on.

Kak gave her the finger before giving up the gesture to lay her hands on the table and steady herself.

“She’s right, though,” Kak said. “You shouldn’t believe anything I say. It will only lead to ruin.”

Kak never meant to go through the five stages of grief backwards. Check out the link to see why acceptance is only the beginning….

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