They sat side by side on his mom’s couch, legs not quite touching. Sue Ellen twisted her hands in her lap when the announcer came on. Jimmy reached for her, but her eyes were fixed on the television.
“Let’s just watch.”
He swallowed. He’d promised to marry her next June. He’d promised her they wouldn’t bring back the draft, he promised her everything would work out okay. But now, instead of watching Mayberry RFD, or cruising Shoreline Drive, or necking out at the Point, they were here, doing this.
The congressman stepped up to the jar and pulled out the first capsule. Once in hand, he offered it to the official. The pair hardly dared to breathe as the capsule was opened, the strip of paper unwound from its case.
“September 14…September 14 is 001.”
Her breath caught; his head fell.
Of all the things they could have done instead.
To learn more about the 1969 Vietnam Draft Lottery, click here.