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The Worst Day Kind Of Night

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The Worst Day Kind Of Night

Beth sighed and brushed her hair out of her face as her car clanked and stuttered to a stop, smoke pouring out from under the hood.

"No. Please God, just let me make it home," she whispered as she rested her head against the steering wheel.

She rolled her window down and leaned back in her seat with her eyes closed.

The sun was beating down on her out there in the middle of Nowhere, Georgia.

Opening her eyes, she reached over into the passenger seat and pulled her phone out of her bag only to find she didn't have a signal.

If this was any other time, if she wasn't in such a hurry to get home and her heart was whole, she would laugh at how nothing had gone right for her since she had left Knoxville that morning.

She wiped the tears and sweat off of her face, grabbed her bag and guitar case, and started walking.

She didn't know how far away the next town was but as soon as she got there she planned on calling Shawn to come pick her up.


"Earth to Beth," someone said, giving her a nudge.

Beth shook her head and said, "What do you want, Jenny?"

Jenny smiled. "I want you to quit daydreamin' and take table three's order."

"I wasn't daydreamin'," Beth mumbled.

"Oh yes you were. You've done that every day since you came to town." Jenny smiled again. "I remember you bustin' in here to get out of the rain and sayin' you were only waitin' for someone to come pick you up. That was two months ago."

"What can I say? It's nice to be in a town where no one knew who I was before."

"That, my dear, is why I plan on gettin' you good and drunk. Maybe you'll finally spill the secret of why you were runnin'."

"I hate to be the one to tell you but I don't talk when I drink, I only get mean."

Jenny raised an eyebrow.

Beth shrugged. "It's a family thing."


When Daryl woke up this morning he had already made up his mind, he was going to make some changes for the better and get out of this town and out of this state.

To hell with starting a new chapter in his life, he was starting a whole new book.

He packed his truck with the few things he had and loaded Merle's motorcycle up in the back and headed to Atlanta.

He figured the least he could do was swing by the prison there and let Merle know he wouldn't be by to see him every weekend like he had been doing for the last two years.

He told Merle he would write him when he got to wherever the hell he was going.

Merle just laughed, shook his head and said, "Good luck, baby brotha."

Daryl made one last stop to fill up his gas tank and grab a couple packs of cigarettes before he hit the road.


"Hi, I'm Beth. What can I get ya?"

Daryl choked back a gasp and started coughing when he looked up at the waitress and saw her smiling down at him.

"Ugh, what's good 'ere?"

"Well, if you're wantin' food then I suggest the double bacon cheesburger but, if you're wantin' dessert then I suggest the peach pie. It's not as good as my mama's but I have been usin' her recipe and everyone seems to like it."

"I'll take some of tha pie an' some coffee. Black, please."

"You got it," Beth smiled and headed towards the counter to get his pie and coffee.

Daryl tried not to look, after all he wasn't here to stay and he wasn't lookin' to set down new roots until he crossed that state line but that didn't stop him from watching her as she moved behind the counter.

When she started back his way, he looked away and focused his attention out the window.

"I haven't seen you around here before," Beth said as she sat his pie down in front of him and poured his coffee. "Are you passin' through or vistin' someone?"

"I jus' took a wrong turn is all."

"You took a wrong turn? I could probably give you directions if you tell me where you were headin'?"

"Knoxville."

Beth took a deep breath but smiled anyway. "Well, lucky for you, I know exactly how to get there from here. I'll write down the directions while you eat your pie."


Beth wrote down the directions back out to the main highway and how to get to Knoxville from there.

She hoped he knew what he was doing because she sure as hell didn't when she had set out for Knoxville. Then again, there was a lot she didn't know about herself, or even Zach, when they took off after graduation. They were both young and naive and a little crazy.

"Daydreamin' again," Jenny whispered.

"I was just thinkin' about when I left home and headed to Tennessee."

"What has you thinkin' about that?"

"Table three. He made a wrong turn and ended up here. He said he was headin' to Knoxville so I wrote down the directions for him."

Jenny nodded and studied Daryl for a moment. "Yeah, I can see why you would be daydreamin' about him. He is kinda cute."

Beth rolled her eyes. "I wasn't thinkin' about him, he just got me thinkin' about the past. And do I need to remind you that you're not only married but you have kids?"

"No, Beth. I'm married and pregnant but I am certainly not dead. I love my husband and my life but I can look, especially when it's a tall, dark stranger like him."

Beth groaned and shook her head with a smile.


Daryl pulled out his wallet and held out a twenty when Beth walked back over to his table.

"Oh, no. No need to pay, the first slice of pie is on the house and here are your directions."

"Thank ya," Daryl said with a nod.

Beth walked away as Daryl stood up from the table and with her back to him, he laid the twenty down on the table for her and walked out.

As he climbed into his truck, the wind picked up and thunder rumbled. He looked over her directions and started the truck.


The lights in the diner flickered a few times before they went out.

"Wow, it's really comin' down," Jenny said as she cleared off the tables.

"It hasn't rained like this in awhile," said one of the other waitresses.

"Hey Beth," Jenny called out. "Can you give me a hand?"

"Yeah," Beth grabbed a rag and handed it to Jenny.

"I'm guessin' this is for you," Jenny said, picking up the twenty and tucking it into the pocket of Beth's uniform.

"I told him the first slice was on the house."

"And then he left you a twenty dollar tip."

Beth just picked up the plate and coffee cup.


"Shit!" Daryl yelled as he slammed on his brakes, stopping inches from the tree that was laying across the road.

Before he could put his truck in reverse, he was jerked forward as another truck smashed into his and he was pushed forward into the tree.

He was pissed but what could he do? The rain was coming down so hard he had barely seen the tree in time to stop so he couldn't blame someone for crashing into his truck with it raining like this.

He jumped, only slightly, when there was a tap at his window. He opened the door and stepped out.

"Hey man, sorry I hit ya but I didn't see ya there 'til it was too late," the guy said.

"It's fine," Daryl mumbled.

"Let me give ya a ride back in to town and we can get Wayne out here to tow your truck when this storm passes. I'll even pay for the damages."

Daryl shook his head, "Naw man. I'll take tha ride but ya ain't gotta pay to get nothin' fixed."

"Let me buy ya a beer then?"

"Hell, that I'll take."


"Beth!"

She smiled when she heard her name being yelled out above the crowd and the music.

"Are you nervous about tonight?" Jenny asked.

"I thought I would be but I'm not. I'm actually kind of excited."

"Well then," Jenny handed her a shot glass, "lets make a toast to your first night performing."

They both raised their glasses and clinked them together.

As Beth raises her glass to her lips, Jenny smiled and said, "Look who just walked in."

Beth turned to look, shocked when she saw the stranger from the diner standing by the door.

Jenny nudged her shoulder. "You should go talk to him."

"You think that's a good idea?" she asked.

"Yeah, of course. Why wouldn't it be?"

Beth shrugged.

"Okay. If you see that I'm screwing everythin' up, please come save me."

"Will do."


Daryl stood by the door, surveying the room.

He caught a glimpse of her looking his way and felt his face turn red but he smiled.

When she started moving his way, his feet had a mind of their own as they carried him towards her.

"Hi," she said sweetly. "I didn't catch your name back at the diner."

"It's Daryl."

"Well, Daryl, how 'bout we get a drink and you can tell me how bad my directions out of here were."

He laughed. "Is that some kind a pick up line?"

"Maybe."

They walked towards the bar and Beth ordered two beers.

"Your directions weren't bad," Daryl said. "There was a tree down then some guy hit my truck. He gave me a ride back here."

"I'm sorry about your truck but you're lucky that's all that happened."

"Yeah, I guess I am," Daryl said as he sipped on his beer. "So what are you doin' in a bar on Monday night?"

"Drinkin' of course but I also happen to be performing tonight."

"Perform?"

"You know, sing my songs and play my guitar."

"That makes more sense than what I was thinkin' you meant."

They talked and drank their beer until the band that was onstage played their last song.

Beth touched his arm, smiled and said, "Stick around and when I'm finished we can go somewhere and talk a little more before you leave again."

He gave her a nod and turned to face the stage.

The crowd cheered as Beth stepped up to the microphone and strummed her guitar.

"To the bag packed, first love leaver

The heart cracked, double down dreamer

The homesick for grass that's greener

And a slice of Mama's peach pie

To the flat broke, couch cushion gas money

The worker bee that ain't gettin' no honey

Missin' someone all the while runnin'

Gunnin' for the brighter lights

Here's to the break ups that didn't break us

The break down, wrong turn that takes ya

To a little dive bar in Dahlonega

Hear a song from a band that saves ya, man

It's hittin' rock bottom smoke 'em if you got 'em

Nothing's going right

Makin' the best of the worst day kinda night

We've all got a number that we don't wanna drunk dial

And a good friend we ain't seen in a while

And a slow dance left in these boots

And a chance at putting down new roots

Here's to the break ups that didn't break us

The break down, wrong turn that takes ya

To a little dive bar in Dahlonega

Hear a song from a band that saves ya, man

It's hittin' rock bottom smoke 'em if you got 'em

Nothing's going right

Makin' the best of the worst day kinda night

Here's to the break ups that didn't break us

The break down, wrong turn that takes ya

To a little dive bar in Dahlonega

Meet a girl outside Atlanta, man

It's hittin' rock bottom smoke 'em if you got 'em

Nothing's going right

You're just singing along with your drink raised

A pretty little blonde thing's looking your way

Makin' the best of the worst day kinda night

Yeah, it's making the best of the worst day kind of night

Oh...

Here's to the breakups

It's that kinda night"


A/N: As I said above, I wrote this at 2am a few nights ago. If you don't already know it is based on the song "A Little Dive Bar In Dahlonega" by Ashley McBryde who is a very talented and badass woman. If you enjoyed this, leave a review.