There was one day in Lightning's life that he wanted to forget and never look back on, but the memory will be forever imprinted in his memory. He couldn't take his eyes off of the calendar that was taped to the tan wall of his cozy cone. He stared at the number 15 until he couldn't take it any more. He'd been choking back tears for weeks now and he didn't think he could hide it any longer from his friends in Radiator Springs. Doc was already suspicious and who knows who else had discovered that something was wrong. That particular date, March 15, 1994 was the exact date he had lost his mom and his sister in a terrible accident. Every time March fifteenth rolls around, he's depressed for days sometimes even weeks. His mom was a 2006 Mazda Miata MX-5 while his sister was a 2007 Porsche Boxster; she was seven years younger than him. His dad died before he even knew him. He averted his eyes to the sunlight that was streaming through the window. He thought about that day when the accident happened… his mom was racing as fast as she could with him and his sister racing along side beside her. They were in the middle of a gun shooting in a down town mall.
He could still hear his mom's voice: "'Lightning, if anything ever happens to me you and your sister run. You run as fast as you can and never look back!'" He looked up and saw her bright green eyes blazing with fear. He nodded and looked over to his 7 year old sister. That's when all hell broke loose. He had heard a gun shot and his mother screaming bloody murder.
He looked over and he didn't see her beside him. "'Oh, no!'" he cried. He looked back and his mom was sitting in a pool of oil with her eyes wide and her mouth agape. Sadness, nausea, panic and frustration flooded into him all at once.
He had looked desperately around for his sister, Callie, but he couldn't see her. He had tried calling for her but his voice was drowned out by all of the noise. There was nothing he could have done…
His horrible flashback was interrupted by the sound of knocking on his cone's door. "Hey buddy? You in there?" asked Mater from the outside. He shook his hood and tried to stop any more tears that would threaten to roll onto his hood.
"I can pull it off for a few more days," he whispered to himself. He opened the door. "Hey Mater, how's it goin'?" asked Lightning casually.
"Doc sent me fer ya. He said it was time to get up," said Mater grinning at him. Lightning started his engine and pulled out of the cone into the sunlight. He started onto the road with Mater driving along beside him. "So bud what took ya? Its noon and you was still in yur cone," Mater chuckled, "slept in much?" Lightning laughed.
"Yeah, I was really tired. I slept like a mummy," he lied as he stifled a yawn. Actually he didn't have a goodnight's sleep for a while. At the café Sally spotted Lightning and Mater coming down the road. She smiled at them; Lightning returned it. She studied his expression closely. She has noticed that he had been acting strange lately and she wanted to keep an eye on him. Down the road Lightning could feel someone watching him. He looked up again and saw Doc and Sally looking at him. Lightning felt as though they were examining him from the inside out. He realized that he too was staring at them. He quickly looked up at Mater. "So, uh, are you going tractor tipping?" asked Lightning.
"Nah, without you it ain't no fun, bud," Mater replied glumly. "Hey, do ya wanna go tonight?" asked Mater excitedly.
"No, I can't. I don't feel so well," said Lightning. He blinked at the road then looked back up at Mater.
"Why, what's wrong?" asked Mater.
"I dunno. My tank hurts a little bit." And that was the truth. It had been bothering him a little bit lately. They pulled up into the café. Lightning went over next to Sally.
"Hey Lightning. Doc was starting to get annoyed that you were sleeping in," laughed Sally.
"Of course," said Lightning.
"Hey dudes! Guess what!?" yelled Fillmore racing down the street from his colorful eighties dome house. "I made, like, a new flavor for my organic fuel!" said the VW hippie excitedly.