Memories are an important part of this story. Alasdair holds onto these memories because they’re positive, and serve to remind him of the fondness of his earlier years- prior to the familial struggles, the alcohol, the control, and the insatiable yearning for another’s burden. Interspersed throughout the story, I include musings that highlight certain positive moments, or memories, in Alasdair’s life. In a way, these fragments represent his control, and at times, lack of control; at times, they bring him a sense of peace, of self-importance, but at times they move him backwards, back into the turmoil and darkness. As far as the narrative is concerned, these musings, or memories, provide the reader with some insight into the his character, his motive, his reliability.
Now remember, while based on my story, and including much of what I’ve experienced, this novel is still, in fact, fiction. So I expect you to read it as such. Here’s one particular Alasdair memory I enjoy, which happens early on in Chapter 1:
Her hair hangs out the window of my speeding car- tresses basking in the California sun, beating wispy tangles against the Honda’s frame. In and out through the cab, I catch her scent. It’s floral and tingly in my nose. I drive on, my hand making airplanes in the oncoming gusts. Down and up, down and up my jet fighter carves motions in the warmth of the sun. She leans over and kisses me on the ear. A world of sun-crisped flowers, elms, dancing windy meadows comes to the forefront of my thoughts. Grinning, I press on. Something’s playing on the radio I can’t decipher entirely but I think it sounds like Dylan’s Tangled Up in Blue. All smiles, we float like bumblebees, buzzing and happy, penetrating pollen-filled winds. She leans over again and I wait- wait for the softness, the wet, the joy. I wait. And I wait some more. Outside the windows, the sun is falling into the sea. Darkness encloses the car- and then I hear it. She’s close to my ear, lips moments away and I hear it. I’ll never love you.