Bobby locked up the equipment and jumped on his bike. Instead of heading home, he turned in the opposite direction, riding along Old Cemetery Road. He pumped his legs hard. His ears filled with rushing wind. His lungs labored for enough air to keep up the pace. Sweat formed down his back, across his forehead.
Turning onto the rutted dirt road that led into the old cemetery, Bobby hopped off his bike and pushed it hard into some low growing cedar that at one time had been a natural fence separating the country road from the cemetery proper. He stepped over the rotted gate that stood at a forty-five degree angle guarding the isolated, rectangular clearing that ran back into the woods.
Bobby started to meander through the rows of headstones looking at names and dates, many of which were indiscernible as the carvings were worn by years of rain, ice, snow and wind. As he ambled along, Bobby wondered who these people were, what their lives had been like, if they been happy, how they had died. He walked along the edge of the cemetery and plopped next to a headstone that was partially engulfed by the surrounding woods. He moved aside the leaves of two maple samplings and read the name Juha Toivonen.
Bobby picked up a few loose pebbles and tossed them into the surrounding brush. As he reached for a smooth stone that lay three feet to his right, he noticed a mosquito on his right forearm. He watched as the insect pierced the skin and started to drink from a vein rich with protein. Soon, the insect’s abdomen displayed a prick of red. Bobby continued to watch as the insect’s abdomen expanded to plump red and yet it continued to take more. Bobby didn’t care and let the insect take what it wanted.