Sunday, October 7, 2012
big beauty queen style
From the moment Topher saw Ricki's predicament on the TV, he thought he might explode. He was in a tizzy and couldn't get in his car fast enough.
"I bet you don't even have a full tank of gas." Luc looked at him as if he knew him pretty well. It was true, Topher's car was riding on E. It took him forever to find his sneakers. No socks. One might have thought he was on the way to the birth of his child. He was in such a hurry.
"What if you get in a wreck?" Lynsey would have to get in on this too. She showed up just when he was trying to get out of the house. "Let me come with you."
"NO." He couldn't have that. This was something he had to do himself. Get in his car and go. And that's what he did. He barely had enough change for the toll roads. He drove all night. No time to change, nor shave. He wanted to see Ricki face to face. He didn't even call.
Yes, it was a sober drive. Just him, some semi-trucks hogging the road and a deer or two springing in to action, ever so often.
He knew what he had to do now. This was his family. Instant, perhaps. He was going to be there for Ricki. This was definitely his kid. He knew. And at seven in the morning, he was knocking on the farm house door. She better be home, he thought. Not on some long lost tour bus on the way to Canada for an Octoberfest. Topher wouldn't put it past her, if she was. That was Ricki for you. Damn, polka party.
Finally, someone came to the door. It was one of her brothers. Bacon on his breath and pancake syrup on his shirt.
"Is Ricki here?" Topher was in a huff. He pushed his dark wavy hair back, hoping Stan, or Jed or what ever his name was, would take him seriously. "I have to see Ricki."
"Ricki!" The boy let out a yelp. He was younger that Ricki, probably middle school age. His buzz cut was Eagle scout worthy.
At least she was home. That was a good sign. But the waiting was agony. The boy called for her again. Topher gritted as if he knew what he was going say, only it wasn't rehearsed or possibly not congealed in his head, specifically.
Finally, she came to the porch. It was true. No mistake by the TV, adding an extra 10 pounds. That was a baby bum under that pink smock of hers. Naturally, she looked as if she was fresh as a morning sunflower. Topher knew she'd been up since dawn feeding those brothers of hers.
"Oh my God." She was all smiles, hugged him with her bubbly energy.
"Is there something you've been forgetting to tell me?" He looked down at her stomach. She was bare footed. Her toe-nails were pained bright pink. He couldn't think of her even touching her toes.
"Uh, I was..going too..." She shrugged, biting her bottom lip. "But you know, it never seemed the right time. And, and there's that show.." She winced then as if she knew this might mean trouble. "I didn't mean to..leave you out of it. Its just, you know. Dad," She sighed. "The band. If..if I can just keep working, they..they will all be happy, you know. That's ..that's what I'm here for."
"Ricki," Topher winced hard. "You're better than that. You, deserve a break. I want you to come home with me."
"But..but.." Her eyes were so wide. It was as if she didn't have the capability to decide.
Topher fumed. "I'm beginning to think I should call the cops. You're not their slave, Ricki. You belong with me." He was putting his foot down. He took her arm. Shut the door behind him. Maybe she was the princess of the polka world. But it wasn't fair.
"No more polka party for you." He'd carry her to the car if he had too. She didn't fight him.
"Well, you're going to have to hurry. They'll know I'm missing once breakfast is over." She told him.
He could do that. He was leaving with Ricki.