It was very dark, and Vincent Chase didn’t know whether he was awake or asleep. He was in a car, and it was moving fast, but that was all he could say for sure. In his dream (or what he thought must have been in his dream), he had been in the passenger seat of another car, somehow on I-95, his mother taking them to Florida, brother Johnny out cold in the back seat. They’d never had the money to take vacations, really, but that one time, somehow, his mom had pulled off. They drove through the night and once Vince had woken up and they were in another state one- he had never heard of before- and it felt like another world.
Time had always seemed like a flexible concept to Vincent Chase. His first year of stardom had seemed like a decade, with the parties and clubs every night, after the party a girl, maybe two, and the guys there in the morning when he woke up to start it all over again, The days just… flowed. And then, later, after the bad movies, and the bad women, and the bad business deals, when he had retreated into himself, and into his penthouse- he could have sworn ten years had passed the second the big heavy door clicked shut behind him. But now, with Mary, time seemed to have suddenly speeded up again, with her he was a frightened old man, and he was a child again, speeding southbound for the promised land. It was all very confusing.
“You awake, baby?” asked his mother, and Vince sped upward through the well of time, into the light, into consciousness, and he knew again that his mother was twenty years dead, and Johnny now too, and the person talking to him was the girl, Mary, in the driver’s seat. Whatever road they were on, there were no lights. Just the faint orange glow of the city, over the horizon in the rearview. Above the convertible, the dome of the stars offered their ancient benediction down to Vince, and the girl, and whatever else was still alive out here.
For a second Vincent Chase loses everything- he has no idea at all where he is, or even who he is: He is blessedly, blissfully, blank. And then it’s all back. The engine purrs as Mary downshifts and eases the big muscle car off the main road.
“Where are we?” asks Vince, and Mary, her voice as soothing and smooth as the one in Vince’s dream, replies, “Almost home.”