20. Vulcan“Oh, would you look at this….”

Molly had seen the motorcycle before James had as they walked down the sidewalk, so she had a moment to mentally prepare herself. It had been a nice dinner on a nice night for a stroll. And now their night was about to have a nice motorcycle join them.

“Oooh, man,” he said, letting go of her hand as he approached it. “It’s a Vulcan 800, and it’s soooo cherry.”

She hated when James referred to things as “cherry.”

He was a good man, a good husband, a good father, but was a little boy when it came to motorcycles. He had one when they started dating, and he had reluctantly parted with it when they had their first child. There was still a motorcycle-shaped hole in his heart that she had come to realize would never fully close.

He circled the bike, taking it in, ticking off its attributes.

“Looks like a 1997,” he said. “Has a 805 cc liquid-cooled V-twin, five speed transmission with… yep, the slap shift.”

Molly felt sometimes like the buzzkill of the relationship. James had an enthusiasm for things that she couldn’t quite muster; this would be one of those things.

“Whoever has this is a lucky man,” James said, more to himself than her.

“Looks dangerous,” Molly said, and hated herself a little for it.

“Yeah,” he said, taking her hand again. He looked over his shoulder once at it as they walked away.