The rain had finally stopped, but the windshield wipers are still on when Dean turns right on Orange Street. He is driving distracted, looking at each side of the street for a house number that he has written on a piece of paper that is now wet with his sweat. 190 Orange St. Esperanza, CA. He remembers when he got the call in the early hours of that morning when he was still sleeping.
“Hey, dude, I found out where she lives!” He heard the familiar voice of his brother, John, at the other end of the phone.
Dean shook his head to wake up and yawning he asked, “What?”
“You know. Yuriko, the love of your life.”
He quickly sits on his bed. His heart is pounding very fast. “You’re joking, right?”
“No, bro. Why would I joke with something like that?”
“Alright, tell me where she is.”
“Okay, grab a piece of paper and write this down: 190 Orange Street in Esperanza, California. You got it?”
“Yes. I wonder what she is doing there.”
“I do not know, bro. I got to run. Good luck.”
“Alright, thanks.” He drops the phone on the bed and takes a drink of the glass of wine that was left there last night. He scans the room with his eyes to see where his blue jeans ended up from the wild night he had with the girl that was sleeping next to him.
Dean remembers when he met this girl. It was one night after he finished his section of mixing songs at the local nightclub. She came to him and asked if she could help him pack the sound equipment. “You do not have to help me. I have people that I pay to do that for me.”
“Don’t worry. I will do it for free if you invite me a drink after we done.”
“I loved the way you mixed Who Will Find Me. It made me dance.”
“Thanks, I just wanted to do things a little different.”
She began to pack the extensions cords, and at times she would stare at his butt with her deep dark eyes. “Yeah, it always sounds different every time I listen to it. But today, you took it to another level.”
That night she took Dean to another level when they made love on the back of his 1967 black Impala with leather seats. Her fingernails scratched all over his back, and during her orgasm he felt like she almost pulled his dirty blonde hair out of the skull. “Ouch!”
“You make love like you mix music,” she says, resting her head on his chest.
He says, “When I mix music, I always think about sex,” caressing her long black curly hair. “By the way, what is your name?”
“Typical guys they first fuck, then they ask for a name.”
Laughing, he says, “Excuse me! But who was in a hurry to get me naked? ”
“I didn’t want to keep that hot body of yours waiting.” He feels her warm hand on his chest, making its way down. Her hair had the lingering smell of rose petals and a hint of smoke. “By the way, my name is Adriana.”
178, 177, 182, 185,189, and one hundred and ninety must be next. Dean sees the number 193 just as he passes the big red van that is parked in front of a house. He stops the car looks to the left, and sees that 192 is over there. Dean grabs the wheel with both hands, and his heart beats faster and faster as he does a quick U-turn. He feels blood running down to his toes faster as he steps on the brake and stops the car in front of 190. Dean reads the little piece of paper once again to confirm that that’s the right house number one nine zero. He looks around, and he sees the front of the house with a neatly wet cut lawn and a little pink bike resting against the wooden fence that separates the other house.
Dean turns off the windshield wipers and the radio. He closes his eyes and puts his head on the wheel that now is wet with the sweat of his hands. He inhales and exhales slowly, remembering how that morning he had said goodbye to Adriana and how he drove like crazy across California to end up here 10 hours later.
His body now begins to feel the pain in his back. He did not make that many stops besides to put some gasoline when the tank was almost out of gas in the middle of the 101. He was lucky to find a gas station not so far from there and fill it up. He looks once again towards the house that is painted with low blue colors with the black roof that hangs at each side like in a church.
He looks down at his watch, and it shows it is 5:15 pm. He grabs the piece of paper with the address and puts it in the right pocket of his jacket. As he takes off his seatbelt, he looks up the rearview mirror to see a white truck approaching, and he sees his dark green eyes that look a little tired.
When he opens the door, time seems to stay still. He steps out of the car and stretches his long legs to walk once again; they feel like hundreds of little ants are biting them at the same time. He makes his way towards the front wooden door he sees hears a dog barking at the other side of the fence. Dean feels the little raindrops fall in his face and the wind blowing cold air. He thinks it is taking forever, but every step he makes gets him closer to see Yuriko once again, or at least he hopes to.
Images of him and Yuriko come to his mind. The way she used to kiss the back of his ears with her soft lips. And how her cold hands would touch every inch of his body and make his body shiver all over. But the image that he remembers the most is her smile; she would show him her bright white teeth after she washed her mouth and at times during sex. Her body always smelled like freshly cut peaches, and that happened to be Dean’s favorite fruit.
The rain intensifies as he is about to knock the varnished wooden door. He stops himself from knocking with his hand in mid-air, and he closes his eyes, feeling his body numb, and time seems to stop just like his heart.