It seems like family means nothing as Hunter takes to the road.
Hunter rose from the couch, turning to his mother. He grabbed her wrist, "Shut the fuck up! I'm so sick of you! You always come home with these lottery tickets and shit- I mean, you'll never win. You're worthless." He turned his back on her, storming out the door. "I'm worthless?! You sit there, like you're fucking nailed to that couch! Like you're fuckin' Jesus or somethin'!" She screamed, following him to the door.
As he began to back out of the driveway, she burst out of the front door, mixing threats with pleas for him to stop. He stopped- not because he was afraid of anything she might do, but because he had one last thing to say. Hunter hugged her, whispering in her ear. "I loved you. And you used to love me, too. What happened that night wasn't my fault. It was his." He returned to the car, and continued backing out. As he drove away, he didn't look back.
He didn't see his mother run to the end of the street and beg him to come home. He had a car, half a pack of cigarettes, a bottle of rum under the dash, and 25 in his pocket. Hunter was free.
He pulled off to the side of the road. He lit a cigarette and slumped in the seat. He looked out the window at the stars that shined brightly against the deserted backdrop. There were no headlights on the road, nothing to block out the beauty of the stars. He touched the tattoo on the side of his neck, running his fingers over the trails of the stars shooting across his skin. He took a drag on the cigarette, blowing the smoke out of his nose. He watched it curl against the glass, making patterns, until it floated out the window.
Hunter's eyelids were heavy, and the calming effect of the cigarette didn't help. It was his third night on the road, and the car was almost out of gas. Hunter barely had enough money to re-fill it again. He pushed the thoughts out of his mind, just trying to focus on the stars. However, not even the stars could keep his lids from closing as he fell asleep.
It was much too hot. Hunter struggled to pull himself from his dreams. It was a warm summer day, he was with his mother... but something was wrong. He was burning up. He shifted uncomfortably in the seat. What was that smell? Finally, he opened his eyes. He gasped for air, choking. He unbuckled the seat in a rush, trying to pry open the door. He finally wrestled free of the seatbelt, grabbing the bottle by his leg, and threw open the car door.
He ran flat out, his heart pounding. His frantic yet cloudy mind finally registered that the neck of the bottle was burning his hand. He threw it into a patch of grass on the roadside. He was currently across the street, and the car was up in flames. The car exploded, and Hunter ducked to the ground.
"Note to self... don't sleep while smoking."