Benjamin West lost a good job and spent six months in prison - he got caught with a teenage girl and a bag of pot - and now he's driving west, cross-country, to start a new life, working as a night desk clerk at a residential hotel in San Francisco's seedy Tenderloin. On arrival, he meets Amber Keenan, who has abandoned L.A. and her malignant ex-boyfriend, Dean, to work as an adult education teacher for VISTA. But what starts as a casual relationship grows quickly complicated when the pasts they'd both like to forget overtake the present. Two people wind up dead. And Ben and Amber find they suddenly have a whole lot more in common than they did just a few days ago. Out West is the story of two perfectly normal, intelligent, attractive, educated people who somehow become killers. It's a dark, slyly humorous story about crossing the line - from stasis to motion, from passing acquaintances to passionate lovers, from innocence to something like guilt.
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air conditioning Amber bathroom beer Benjamin Benjamin West blocks breath cage Cecilia chair Chevy cigarette clothes coffee dark Dean Dean's desk dirt drink drove elevator eyes face feel feet felt finger fire door Flash Fiction floor front fuck glass gloves going hair hand he'd Hertz inside jacket jean jacket jeans knees knew laughed leaned legs light Lisa lobby locked looked Lysol mouth moved neck night nodded Pepperidge Farm Pismo Beach plastic pulled pushed reached rearview mirror road seat shirt shook his head shoulder shovels shut the door side sidewalk smell smiled smoke sneakers stairs stared stirrup pants stood stopped street suitcase sunglasses T-shirt Tenderloin thought tire iron took touched trees tried trunk trying turned Union Square video poker voice waited Walgreen's walked wall watching West window windshield woman