At a bar in Peru, Tressa meets with a man, Ponca Mateus, who tells her that Senor Hidalgo has important business and can't meet with her for several weeks. When Tressa explains that her visa has already expired, Ponca tells her that the money doesn't matter. On a nearby radio, Rick Swanson comes on and says that he has a special song for Tressa, who will be graduating in 1974. Tressa goes over to the radio and listens to the song on the old-fashioned radio, but it fades away after a minute. Ponca says that the radio hasn't worked in several years, and Tressa turns the cabinet around to reveal that there's nothing inside.
Tressa goes to the old WLBD radio station, which has been closed down for years. She goes inside and looks fondly at the equipment.
Rick DJs at the station as Tressa looks on. When he talks about their engagement and worries about Tressa's mother, Tressa says that she's not scared of her.
Swamp Thing watches from the brush as Tressa drives away.
Later, Tressa meets with her friend Carrie Bishop and tells her what happened. She insists that it's Rick and says that she had to tell someone that knew Rick as well as she did. Tressa points out that Carrie is the county supervisor, and asks if she can help her find Rick. Carrie says that her job is more about making sure the nearby highway is built, and invites her to dinner at a restaurant. Tressa agrees and leaves, and worker Toby Dumar comes over. Carrie confirms that it was Tressa, and warns that the rain had better not slow down the highway construction. He tells her that it won't.
That night at the restaurant, Carrie suggests that Carrie imagined Rick's voice and went back to a happier time I her life. She says that every girl I town had the hots for Rick and he took advantage of that. Tressa knows and admits that she fell hard for him as her first love. Carrie excuses herself for an early-morning meeting, just as a radio broadcasts Rick dedicating a song to her. Carrie says that it's just a recording.
Later at home, Tressa looks through newspaper clippings about Rick crowning her queen of the prom and then mysteriously disappearing. There's a demo record inside, with a message written on it by Rick saying that Tressa would always be a part of him. Tressa plays it and remembers.
Tressa and Carrie arrive at the radio station and discover that Rick and his motorcycle is gone. Carrie says that maybe Tressa doesn't know Rick as well as she thought, but Tressa insists that Rick told her to meet him there and had something for her.
Reverend Willeford arrives at the house and says that Carrie told him that Tressa was in town. He asks if there was any word about Rick, and insists that he didn't like what Rick stood for. Tressa insists that Rick didn't run out on her, but Willeford says that he saw Rick driving away on Highway Five the night that he disappeared. The reverend promises Tressa's mother that he'd look after her, but Tressa insists that she can look after herself.
Swamp Thing goes to the highway construction site and summons the primal memory of the Elder of the Swamp. Concentrating, Swamp Thing sees the past where someone is digging. The creature finds an engagement ring on the site and realizes what happened to Tressa.
Tressa remembers Willeford mentioning Highway Five and goes to the construction site. She looks around and finds the buried motorcycle, recently dug up. There's a skeleton as well, and Tressa realizes that it's Rick's.
Later, Tressa attends the funeral at Willeford's church. Afterward, she asks if Willeford saw Rick bury himself. He says that there was a woman driving right behind Rick that night and he thought they were running off together. Willeford didn't see who it was, and advises Tressa to forget Rick. Tressa insists that Rick meant the world to her and still does, and Willeford promises to listen with an open heart if she feels the need to talk.
That night, Carrie is at home with Toby. He warns her that Tressa is spreading stories that Rick is talking to her, and figures that either Tressa is nuts or knows something that will put them away. Carrie points out that that if Toby had left the project fall behind schedule, Rick's body would be ten feet under the concrete. Toby reminds her that he kept her from being found out when she killed Rick, and Carrie slaps him. He warns that he won't forget what happened, and Carrie tells him that if he wants any more road projects then he will.
As Toby cleans the blood off his face, he sees the engagement ring on the window sill. He calls Carrie back to show her, but there's nothing there. Outside, Swamp Thing watches the house and holds the ring.
Ponca calls Tressa and says that Hidalgo will meet with her about Jim in two days. She agrees to meet there and then calls her travel agent Evelyn and says that she needs a flight back to Peru. Tressa then puts the demo record on and finds a note from Rick saying that he found the perfect woman with Tressa. On the record, Rick and Carrie start arguing and Carrie says that she'll prove that she loves him. Rick tells her that he loves Tressa and is going to marry her. There are the sounds of a struggle and Carrie says that Tressa can't have him. When Tressa plays the record back, there's no trace of the conversation.
Later, Tressa meets Carrie and Toby at the radio station. She says that Rick talked to her again, and he said that it was a woman who stabbed him to death. Toby wants to leave, but Carrie demands more information. Tressa says that Willeford saw someone about Toby's size driving out of town on Rick's motorcycle. She accuses them of killing Rick, and Toby confesses. Carrie takes out a knife and says that she can't have anyone telling anyone what she did. Tressa points out that the nearby microphone is live. The police come in and take Carrie and Toby away.
Tressa drives to the airport and Rick comes on the radio. She brakes to the halt, and Rick plays a special request for someone who helped him. He says that if Tressa stops by WLBD, there's something special he'd like to give her. After a moment, Tressa misses her flight and drives to the station and calls to Rick. She asks if there's something else she wants to do and looks through the debris. She says that she loves Rick and always has, and breaks into tears.
There's no response, and Tressa goes to her car. The radio announces that the flight Tressa was going to take crashed upon departure and there were no survivors. Rick comes on, saying that he's signing off for now and true love never dies. He says goodbye to Tressa and she breaks into tears. The engagement ring is on the dashboard. From the shadows, Swamp Thing watches.
Written by Gadfly on Sep 18, 2017