The flashing car lights I’m anxious to leave behind are a blur as I speed down the highway. I can’t drive fast enough to escape my past. I scrub a hand down my face, the other tightening around the steering wheel as my knuckles whiten.
The radio is silent. I don’t want a reminder of the one thing that stole everything from me. The swooshing of the other cars I race past is enough music for my ears. The pelting rain on my car adds the only drumming I need right now.
An angry breath moves through me, and I blow out air from my lips. All I can think about is her. Her and the pain in her eyes that mirrored the same pain I put there four years ago.
It was done a long time ago, and I’m the only one to blame.
I squeeze my eyes shut despite my flying speed. I’ve lost control of everything in my life. Little by little, I gave a piece of my life to a dream I thought would offer everything I ever needed.
Instead, it destroyed me. It destroyed my passion. And now, the media is having a ball with it all, blowing it all up, making mountains out of invisible grains of sand. Enough to hurt both her and me.
I was naïve, and she was strong.
I flick the turn signal and take the exit, the shrilling sound of an incoming call interrupting my thoughts.
“What?” I bark out.
“Where are you?” My friend and manager, Harris, asks.
“You know where.” I go to hang up, but his voice comes through.
“Don’t do it,” he demands.
“You can’t tell me what to do anymore.”
“Knox, we’ll get through this. We’ll get a new label. Hell, you’re famous enough you can create your own label and release whatever you want,” he tries to convince me. This is about more than my music. This is about something bigger than a label, it’s about a culture.
“I’m done, Harris.”
“When will you be back?” His voice rings with resignation.
“I don’t know.” I hang up and pull into the airport.
Grabbing my suitcase, I stalk through the doors, cap low on my face and head bowed. I go through security, never glancing back at the city I’m leaving behind.