Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Grrr! (01/28/10)
TITLE: A Friend In Need
By Celeste Ammirata
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With my teeth, I pulled off my glove, and dug into my pocket for my cell phone. No missed calls, no text messages. “This is so like him,” I said aloud. “He never thinks about me. I bet if it were Matt standing on this corner, he would have been here by now.” To get out of the wind, I moved into the bus shelter.
I supposed I could take the bus home, so I called Kevin, and went straight to his voice mail. “Hey, it’s me….”
I slammed the phone shut. I couldn’t believe it. He knew my car was in the shop for the third time in six months. He knew how tired I’d be. I was up at six for clinical rotation at the hospital. Went straight to school at ten, for a major exam. Then bummed a ride with Annie, a fellow nursing student/waitress, who worked at the same diner I did, for the lunch shift. She picked up the dinner shift and couldn’t drive me home.
And I had to go through the same grueling routine again the next day.
Kevin’s the kind of guy who couldn’t say no to anyone. Except his girlfriend. We’d been going out for a year and a half and I was getting a little tired of always being at the bottom of his list.
I guessed that wasn’t entirely true, but he’d been spending so much time with Matt, whose pregnant wife was on bed rest. He helped him with moving into a new house, putting up new gutters, insulating his attic and fixing his garage door. I went with him a couple times and cooked up some a storm. I left their freezer packed with lasagna, chicken (fried and francaise), and a succulent pot roast.
The bus pulled up, spewing out diesel exhaust. I wearily climbed the steps and paid my fee. Grrr!
Two minutes into the bus ride, “You’re Still The One” rang out from my cell phone. I considered not answering, just to give him a taste of what he’d been giving me. But, I was ticked off, and in the mood for a good fight.
“Hey babe, where are you?” Kevin stupidly asked.
“On a bus because my so-called boyfriend didn’t seem to care that his exhausted girlfriend was standing on a street corner on a freezing cold, dark, scary night.”
“Honey, I am so sorry. What stop are you getting off at? I’ll meet you there.”
“Where were you?”
Kevin cleared his throat. “Um, with Matt.”
“His cat get stuck in a tree?”
My boyfriend had the nerve to laugh. “You know he doesn’t have a cat.”
“His fence needed white-washing?”
He laughed even harder. “Nope.”
I sighed, irritated that he found this whole thing so funny. “So what happened?”
“This is something best explained in person. Now, tell me what stop, I’ll meet you there.”
“Sure you will.”
“I love you, Sara.”
Grrr! “It doesn’t feel that way.”
“Fifth and Main. Hopefully, I’ll see you there.” I closed the phone without saying goodbye.
I stepped off the bus, looked around and saw no sign of Kevin’s truck. Grrr!
With tear-filled eyes, I opened up my cell phone. The driver's door of a newer looking Chevy Impala opened, and my heart rate sped up. Kevin stepped out with a huge grin on his face. He walked over to me, dangling a set keys on his forefinger. “Surprise!” he said.
My mouth dropped open.
Kevin wrapped his arm around me and led me to the car. He opened the driver’s side door. “Get in.”
Speechless, I climbed into the heaven-sent warmth.
He slid into the passenger seat and handed me the keys. “It’s all yours. Matt really appreciates all the help we’ve been giving him and his wife. It was her car, paid off last month. She can’t use it now, and once the baby is born, her dad is going to buy them a Chevy Equinox.” He looked so proud of himself. “I was late because Matt had trouble finding the title. I’ll feel so much better now that you’ll be driving a dependable car.” His lips curled up. “Forgive me for being late?”
I hugged him tight. “Yup. And I love you, too.”
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