TITLE: THE ANATOMY OF A TAUT-LINE HITCH
GENRE: MG Contemporary
A common double knot. Most often
used to join the ends of two disconnected lines.
The Complete Book of Knots sits open in my lap, flapping in the steamy wind that gushes in through the car window. I wrap a length of rope around my fingers. Tight—until the tips turn white and start to go numb. Then I slump onto the back seat and let go.
I should know by now that numbness doesn’t solve anything.
Dad glances at me in the rearview mirror, his eyebrows thick and dark like two furry caterpillars. “How you doing back there, Petra?” he asks.
How does he think I’m doing? Three weeks ago he and Mom started their “trial separation”—whatever that means—and just when I thought Amber and I would finally get some alone time with him I find out my ex-best friend and her mother are crashing our vacation. Does he want me to act like we’re headed to Disney World?
“Just wanted to check on you,” he tries again. “You’re so quiet.”
“That’s ‘cause I’ve got nothing to say.” No one ever asked me if I cared if the O’Leary’s came.
Upfront, Amber takes a break from texting and turns around, eyeing me carefully. She knows why I’m not talking. Her hair is pulled up in a messy bun, and her perfectly pedicured feet are perched on the dashboard. She’s sitting where Mom usually sits. Or used to.