“It was a fucking joke, man!” Miles sputters with blood after the two are pulled from each other, after Miles tries to tackle Travis’s ribs to reciprocate the blow while his new college peers hold him back, after disinterested former players retreat to the parking lot, unlocking the cars their parents purchased for graduation presents: everything for everyone else a graduation present, another rung on a ladder leading away from the County.
“I know,” Travis says long after Miles has left. The fist said their goodbyes and Travis feels no more spite. He stares at the wide expanse of the park. From where he stands he can’t see Route 4, but he can make out the squat skyline of Walmart and the supermarket in the shopping center on the other side of the road, Subway somewhere beside them, distant but omnipresent.