September 8th, 2022 Thursday: Afternoon Storms
"Nothing is objective. Everything is relevant." Sketchy Sky
The truck lingered beside them.
Pondering with her head down in the passenger seat, twelve cars back from the congested stop light, Kassy craved to write. Her fingers fumbled for the missing fountain pen. Her right leg muscles twitched. Her mauve backpack in the floorboard consisted of clear white note pads, a Halloween ghost pin from her art class and her phone with one app, Starbucks. But no pen. It was almost that time of year.
I can’t wait.
The work truck still rumbled beside them like an old tractor from her grandpa's farm. Adeline tilted her head up and left, glanced in through their passenger window, half down, vibrating in the rain. Kassy watched it roll backward and then pull away. She sensed them, felt them, pictured them. The letters, bluish grey, larger now, slowly emerged into view again as each lane's traffic shifted. The misunderstood words on the tailgate brought Kassy's head down toward her empty fingers. A blazing reminder of what was wrong with her. Kassy looked up at Adeline. She noticed something she hadn’t observed earlier.
“Mom! Can we call them?”
She didn’t want to say the name out loud. It haunted her already.
“Cathy. Cathey with an E. The woman or man or family who owns the roofing company.”
Adeline made no sudden remarks. She ruminated on the implication of her decisions like Kassy did, marinating on one response compared to another, all the possible counterquestions and direction any angle taken verbally could lead. The only thing they were able to hide from one another was the spoken word. Everything else was a giveaway. Their cluster of movements, fidgeting, quirks, patterns, hesitations, over delivery of details... Adeline's contemplating always put Kassy at ease.
Time passed by for what seemed an eternity to her empty fingers. The truck veered left at the light as her mom approached the intersection and drove straight through.
“Of course we can hun.”
They pulled into a parking lot. Kassy had been open to shopping for fall supplies after school, but that was before their afternoon appointment. Now everything seemed unbearable. She walked through the stores but never picked up an item or had the desire to pretend. They left with a few trinkets, but Kassy wasn’t open to decorating tonight.
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