At a small, under-utilized state rest stop just east of Tacoma along a quiet stretch of Highway 167, Shane splashed his face with cold water and did his best to wash up. Jacob sat in the stall next to him, crouched on the seat of the commode. A pair of Shane’s mud boots had been positioned in the gap of the stall door to give the appearance of a full-grown occupant. Shane looked around for a paper towel dispenser to dry his face but only saw a hand dryer that appeared in questionable condition. He twisted the blower nozzle upward, positioned his face over it, then pushed the chrome start button. A spider blew out, glancing off his cheek.
“JEEZ!” he exclaimed, jumping aside and brushing at his face with both hands.
“What happened?” Jacob asked from inside the stall.
“Nothing,” Shane answered, drying his face with his shirt sleeve. “Just an air-born spider attack.”
“What?!?” The door to the stall flew open as Jacob quickly emerged, his eyes darting around the room.
Shane pushed the chrome button again, turning the dryer off. “It came flying out of there. I didn’t see a parachute, so I don’t think he made it.”
A smile broke Jacob’s worried expression. He began to laugh, the sound of his giggling echoing between the bare concrete floor and ceiling.
It was a good sound, thought Shane, who realized it was the first time he’d heard Jacob laugh. He began chuckling as well, then shushed himself and Jacob quiet as he gathered up his boots. Peeking through a gap in the restroom door, Shane made sure no one else was around before the two of them hurried into the cab of the pick-up and drove from the parking area.
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