Friday, January 5, 2018

First Scenes Friday

I began a new story as part of a January 30-day challenge. Here are the first few scenes:

My view of our townhouse through the rear window of the limousine became smaller and smaller, and then disappeared as the vehicle went around the corner. I might never see it again. Maeve sat beside me; the two of us filled less than a third of the passenger space. My little sister hadn’t stopped crying since Mom and Dad’s funeral. At first, I tried to console her, but I was only sixteen. I decided to let her cry for both of us so I could be strong.

The car stopped abruptly. I turned to the front to see why. Was that really an elephant in the road, lying on its side?

I nudged Maeve. “Look.”

She wiped her eyes and followed my pointing finger. For the first time in four days she stopped crying. “What’s it doing there?”

“I don’t know. Perhaps we can go look.”

“Stay in the limousine, girrrls,” Evans called from the driver’s seat. “I believe the cirrcus personnel will tend to him.” His Scottish accent became more obvious when he was excited. Yes, this was as excited at he got. “Once they help theirr animal, we can continue to the airrporrt.”

The airport, so we could fly south to our only remaining relatives, Aunt Glynis and Uncle Duncan. They were really our great-aunt and great-uncle, and owned a large house in Florida.

I handed Maeve a pack of tissues and she wiped her eyes.

“Blow your nose, too,” I said.

The circus people had to bring in a hoist to right their elephant, a fascinating effort. But it took so long, we missed our plane. Moire and I would spend one more night in our house.

It was good to spend another night in our old home, but also bad. My regrets about leaving were twice as they had been

because it brought back even more memories of my parents, my mother braiding my hair and finding the perfect bows, my father taking me to a ballgame and buying us both hot dogs and Cokes;

because my bed was so comfortable I actually slept, but was well aware it was the last time I’d sleep in my bed;

because my sister started to cry once more after she stopped for a couple of hours;

because Nina, our cook, served us her delicious lasagna and we’d never have it again;

because I found more items I had to take, but there was no more room in my suitcases;

because I’d already said goodbye to my room and had to do it again.


Another traffic jam slowed our trip to the airport the next day, but we finally pulled in to ‘Departures’ two hours before our flight. Evans lugged our luggage to the check-in counter. Maeve and I each had a carry-on. Hers matched her purple suitcase of course, and was filled with what she thought vital: her iPhone, a set of Bose Quiet Comfort earphones, and the stuffed pink pig she’s carried with her everywhere since Mom and Dad gave it to her for her second birthday.

I’d become so paranoid that I had a change of jeans, t-shirt, bra, panties and socks, a full first-aid kit, pretzels and chips (despite the fact we’d be fed in first class), tissues and a spare toothbrush with one of those little tubes of paste you get from the dentist. What if the plane crashed on a beach like in Lost or in the woods? What if our luggage was missing? I was prepared.

We sat in the waiting area for Flight 123. We could have spent the time in the Delta lounge, but I always preferred the general waiting area because the people watching is better there.

Maeve tugged on my sleeve. “They’re calling unaccompanied minors.”

“You’re accompanied,” I reminded her.


We boarded with the other first class passengers. Aunt Glynis had insisted we fly first class, telling me in her last phone call, “You don’t want to be sardined with the riffraff.”

We followed the rest of the deplaning passengers to the carousel to pick up our checked bags. I scanned those waiting, mainly gray-haired and slightly stooped, but didn’t see my aunt and uncle. Finally I spied Fergus.

What can I say about him? He was their man Friday would be best. Butler, chauffeur, man-of-all-trades.

Moira tried twice to rescue her suitcase from the ever-moving serpentine but finally the man who had sat across from us on the plane hefted it off for her.

“Thanks,” she said with a cheeky grin and almost curtsied.

I stifled my giggles and finally spotted my own black bag. Without help, I was able to retrieve it and led my sister to Fergus. “Where are Aunt Glynis and Uncle Douglas?”

No comments:

Post a Comment