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Soul To Keep

She got herself a ride over to the next town and then she walked for the rest of the night. She walked a lot during the day too, and that next night she slept in an abandoned car, behind a gas station. The owner found her there in the morning, and gave her two cigarettes and a cup of coffee, before sending her on her way. He did not have the mind to care where she was from.
But she did.
So she walked some more.
Until she found a pay phone and she called back home; collect.
"Hi, Mom."
"Nobody is looking for you, Miranda," her mother replied, listening to her daughter sigh in relief.
"You haven't called the police?"

Miranda walked all day. She found a dollar and then a little shop that sold coffee for that much. She sat at the counter.
The man who sat beside her wore a red plaid shirt. He offered her one of his donuts. "You're too skinny," he said.
And she laughed and took the offer. "Where you headin'?"
And he replied, "Nowhere, I am parked for the night."
He asked if she wanted to have a nap in the cab of his truck.
She took that offer too.
The lights from the parking lot barely made it into the sleeping space of the truck. He came on her stomach, but he never touched her, happy just to look at her out-lined naked.
He offered a ride for all of the next day.
And she accepted. "Thank you."
In the morning, she went to wash up.
"Here's five bucks. Get us some coffee, while you're in there," he had said to her.
She cried in the parking lot, when she realized he was gone. Until she remembered the pack of cigarettes in her coat pocket.
And then she started walking again.

She walked until she met Tad, inside just another little town. He said he drove. He said if she came over to his house, he would borrow his fathers car and take her somewhere. Anywhere.
"Where do you want to go?" He asked her.
"Who cares?" she laughed, as she followed him home.
But his father was not there.
And he said, "That's okay. He will be home soon." They would hide her in his room until then.
And the next morning, Miranda left without getting a ride and with a ten-dollar bill balled up in her hand.

On another simple Main Street she walked, until she saw the pay phone.
"Hi, Mom," she called again and before he mother could say anything she rushed out, "I am pregnant."
And then her mother said, "Jesus Christ.....Miranda.....Miranda, don't come home till you get rid of that."
She hung-up and walked into a pharmacy. She wandered up and down the aisles, listening to the radio. Music she did not know. She looked at hair dye and she looked at shampoos. She wouldn't buy anything, but would stand in front of the notebooks and pens and wonder if she should.
But she knew she had to walk.

Just three miles from the highway rest stop, she thought she would collapse. It was past two-thirty in the morning and she knew there would be no ride.
Two hours later, she arrived, blood soaking through her pants. She was crying so loud the waitress called an ambulance.
And the doctor at the hospital said her baby was fine. It still had a heartbeat.
And she turned to the wall and she cried some more.
And the doctor said, "Did you not want it to be?"
And she said, "No."

When she woke-up, the doctor was standing over top over her. "Are you listening - can you hear me?" And when she nodded yes, the doctor told her, "It has been taken care of."
The doctor said she could stay in the room for a day or two. She could have food to eat and she could get some sleep and she could use the shower as often as she wanted.
And she could make phone calls.
But this time when she called her mother, no one answered.


KJB said…
Jesus, Q. What i wouldn't give to know your past do people live like that? and so many do...
~Autumn said…
There's nothing like coming and going in no particular direction.
Terrible lie said…
I wandered alot when I was a teen... I really liked this one!! It was dirty.. I like dirty hahah
thethinker said…
Geez, how do you do that with your stories?
Queenie said…
Do what?

ticknart said…
Q, I think I've read this story six times and I've been trying to come up with something to say other than the obvious. Since I can't think of anything, I'll stick with the obvious:

Your story is amazing.
I love your story - so sad but it happens so often...

Thanks for the nice comment. Want to exchange links?

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