All Saints Church
CAROLINE, part I of VI
"The address my mom wrote down for me is somewhere in this city," said Jason. He knew by the flash in her green eyes what words were gonna spout out of her mouth. They had traveled side by side for four days on the sleek, tooled-out greyhound bus. He couldn’t believe he had once thought of living his entire life with her beside him. How he ever thought her tiny, beedy green eyes and her fat, puffy lips were attractive, he’d never know. It had been two days since the luxury of the greyhound bus seat they had gotten off of disappeared away from the desolate bus stop they’d been shoved off of. Their final destination wasn’t a ritzy bus station like they had both fantasized about. There wasn’t a building in sight, the long, barely paved road, a dirty, grimy reminder of the stinking hell-hole his mom had referred to as home. When he asked the bus driver to point him in the direction of the nearest motel, the bus doors abruptly closed in his face, the driver an expert at pretending not to hear. He was a fat sloth, taking more than his share of food in the world, just like every other one of them who slammed the door closed in his face. He tried not to think about all the exaggerated, elaborate tales he had told about the mounds of cash he would be making in his mom’s cousin’s hometown. He laughed along with her while he pried open his soiled, grimy front pocket, gesturing how wide it would be from all the cash he assured her he’d be making in East Grand Forks, Minnesota. She’d be sending money back to her mom and baby sister in no time at all. She had only teared up once on the four day bus ride. He had made her shimmy up to the old, bald guy when his wife was in the ladie’s room and ask him for a five dollar bill for food. The man sneered and went off to tell the bus driver.
He would never admit his mistake for not lifting some non-perishable food before they drove out of the first bus station. He made her pretend to use the restroom around the corner of the gas station, then continue farther down to rummage through the dumpster for food while he occupied the cashier with a concocted story of how the maniac bus driver had stolen all his money and threatened to drop he and his gal off in the middle of nowhere if they ratted him out to anyone at the second scheduled stop.
"Where will we stay, Jason," she cried, her eyes wet with fear, "You said your mom’s cousin lived just down the street from the bus stop. You said we’d have a home cooked meal every night and our own separate room with cozy, warm beds."