I did get better at driving, eventually. I'm not sure how long it took, but it felt like a few months. It didn't help that I could only practice in parking lots and on freeways. Once I was more comfortable with it, I would do the driving every few days.
One day, I noticed that the few clouds I saw were kind of grey. "Have they always been like that?" I remarked to Joey.
"Yeah, and there have been a few more lately."
"Huh... Oh, 'Popcorn'!" I turned up one of my favorite Muse covers, and that was the end of the cloud conversation.
The dreams about Jason continued, and each time I got closer and closer to seeing him. I even heard his voice every now and then, but faintly. Somehow, I felt that he was looking for me too. It's almost as if we were sharing a dream, but something was separating us. Either that, or my subconscious just knows him really well.
"How did you die?" Joey asked me on one of my driving days. I nearly choked on my gummy bear.
"That's kind of a personal question," I replied once I had composed myself.
"Well, you know how I died. I'm curious."
A pause. "Fell how?"
"Did someone push you or something?"
"No, I was alone."
"So... you just fell."
"You're just that clumsy?"
"I don't buy it."
He didn't ask me anything else about my death, but I think his curiosity got to me. That night, as we were laying in our beds, I said, "You awake, Joey?"
"If I wasn't before, I am now."
"It was suicide."
"I jumped off that building. Jason, my boyfriend, died in a car accident, so I jumped."
"Wow. That's... I'm sorry."
"Don't be, I was being overly defensive. I didn't really want to say anything, considering the kind of reputation suicide has."
"That's understandable.... Can I go to sleep now?"
"Knock yourself out."
My dream confirmed my belief that night: I caught a glimpse of feet wearing Jason's favorite pair of shoes, the ones he was likely to be wearing when he died. I woke up smiling... well, at first.