If you are just now tuning in, this is part two. See the post below for part one.
The drive home seemed longer than the ride out. And my Jane Doe friend didn’t have much to say. Mr. Lane called four more times and eventually, I told him what was going on. After he yelled loud enough for her to hear, I said, “Babe, remember two years ago, truck stop, Greyhound? Okay then, fair is fair, so zip it. I love you. Bye.”
When I hung up, Jane looked nervous and said, “He’s mad, isn’t he?”
“His bark is way worse than his bite. Besides, he’ll get over it.”
“No, I don’t want you to get in trouble. Just drop me off over there.”
Her voice was soft, childlike almost. She reminded me of a junior high school friend trying to talk me out of doing something to annoy my parents. And just like I would have back then, I ignored the suggestion.
“I told you, it’s not safe to be on the side of the road. Everything is going to be okay. Trust me, he’s not really mad.”
“Are you sure?”
“What happened two years ago?”
To pass the time, I told her the long version of what happened when Mr. Lane found a sad homeless man standing outside of a truck stop. He too couldn’t just walk by a fellow man whose eyes were filled with tears and not offer a hand. Without warning, he brought the man home. He’d just gone through a bitter divorce, and his finances were completely tapped out. He had hitchhiked and walked for days from Kansas to Illinois. He just wanted to get back to Pennsylvania where most of his family lived.
Mr. Lane brought him home, where he showered, got some clean laundry, ate and made some phone calls. One of his brothers offered to wire him some money. Mr. Lane took him to get the money, and then took him to the greyhound station. My old man gave him a little cash for food along the way. And then he was gone.
“So just because he had a little tantrum, doesn’t mean he isn’t a sweetheart deep down.”
“He sounds nice… when he isn’t yelling,” she said with a big smile.
It was right then, when she smiled, that I was 100% sure, this was the right thing to do. There was a beauty beyond words that shined from her blue/green eyes. I’d found a princess turned pauper.
Stay tuned for part three, coming soon to a blog near you.