Koptsev was a partier, a guy that swore he’d never grow up and have such big responsibilities like the adults around him. He and his friends would drive through the streets of their small town like they owned it, radio blasting and tires shrieking, their voices and joyous laughter mingling and ringing through the town. Their drives, even if they took a different route every time, always ended at the overpass, where they parked and spent the evening hours laughing and mocking the adults that couldn’t understand them.
They were family, brothers and sisters in arms when their blood relatives turned their backs on them and marked them as lost causes. They sang, laughed, and cried together, promised each other they would never grow up and always stay together no matter what life threw at them. Even if their families abandoned them, Koptsev knew they would always have each other.
He didn’t need his family.
He didn’t need his emotionally absent mother or his disappointed father. He didn’t need his cage-like apartment with the too-low ceiling. He just wanted freedom, the star-filled sky stretching over him, as high as his dreams, and the steering wheel in his hands and the sound of the engine just barely heard over the laughter of the only people that mattered.
Sadly, the dreams ended, the laughter began to quiet down, and slowly their mismatched, rebellious family began to break down before his eyes. By the time he was nineteen, it was just him on that overpass, the others going on with their lives and with each laugh that left his side, he began growing up even if it hurt.
The stars, like his dreams, were too far away, just specks of light in the dark sky and eventually, he too left that overpass.