The Last Fare

Writing Exercise

“Why am I here?”

The woman wore pajamas, her feet adorned with unicorn slippers. A taxi rumbled quietly in front of her. The window rolled down and the driver tipped his hat. “Ma’am? I can take you where you need to go.”

She pressed her lips together and nodded at the man’s kindness. “I want to go home.”

The taxi doors opened and warmth poured out. She hadn’t realized how cold she was. With a relieved sigh, she settled into the back seat.

“It’s been a difficult night,” the driver commented. “But you’re safe, now.”

“I must have been sleepwalking,” the woman whispered. She sat up straight, suddenly worried. “My wallet! It’s not with me. I can’t pay you for the ride!”

The driver laughed, a comforting sound that cut through her panic. “It’s fine, my dear. If you dig around in the seat, I’m sure you’ll find something to give me.”

She ran her fingers along the seams of the seats. The two copper pennies jammed in the cushions were shiny and new.

“It’s not much,” the woman admitted. She handed the pennies to the driver, who examined them with a sad smile.

“Don’t worry, dear. It’s enough.”

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