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confl icts and the questions.” The words seemed harsher than he wanted. “I told you from the beginning we needed to go slow.” “Slow is fi ne. As long as we’re both going the same direction.” After another long silence she said, “I don’t want to be without you, Michael.” “Okay, then. That’s what I needed to hear.” “I miss you.” “I miss you too. Can I call you tonight?” “Please. It doesn’t matter how late.” The attendant was standing over him, a sympathetic look on her face. “I have to go,” Michael said. “I’ll call you.” Another airport, another rental desk. His father’s house was in a subdivision of upscale custom-built homes near White Rock Lake in East Dallas. Michael took Mockingbird Lane all the way, the route so familiar he could drive it in his sleep, yet now also strange, dreamlike. He parked in the driveway, careful not to block the garage door. The lawn had yellowed from lack of water and the house seemed unkempt, like someone who slept in his clothes. His father had designed and built the place himself in the early
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