‘What’s in the Rear View Mirror?’ by E. G. Lander
Steve Summers was loved by everyone in Rymont, South Carolina. He would always be there for anyone who needed help, never asking for anything in return. One unusually dark and moonless night he headed home after helping a friend fix his dock. He squinted, struggling to see the road ahead. He was concentrating on just two things, the worn-out white line in the center of overused Route # 5, and the gorgeous looking pie sitting next to him that kept sliding his way. That was his pay for fixing the dock, a homemade pie. He didn’t see the truck that hit him. It pushed him off the road, hurling him towards a hundred year old oak that was stretching it’s arms over the asphalt. He died instantly, eventually creating the rehashing of a fifty year old saga that would engulf the entire town of Rymont. Many thought Steve died because of the blackness that night, or even killed himself to avoid the colon cancer his doctor had detected the previous week. But Granny knew better, she knew he was about to tell a story to “clean out his guilt” of something he did when he was in high school. She didn’t know what it was, but she knew that her husband did not die accidentally, or ran off the road on his own. After she tells her grandson Billy how she feels, he agrees to try to find out what happened back in the 1950’s. He digs so deep that an unsolved murder is discovered, making him wonder if his grandpa was involved. His journey to the truth uncovers more than he expects, maybe more than his family would want discovered. Someone driving a big green GMC truck tries to push Billy off the road and puts him in the hospital. He gets help from the Chief of Police, who digs more, getting close to the answers until he is murdered, too. By now all of Rymont has gone from a quiet dot on the map to a place where neighbors locked their doors at night for the first time. Eventually Billy gets help from an unexpected source, leading him to the real truths, both from 50 years earlier and to who is trying to kill anyone looking into those half-century old secrets. Now starts the hard part, getting the state police to believe him enough (from his hospital bed) to pursue the answers that will shock everyone.