Lunette calls her mother with bad news about her car.
|It was not easy unlocking the door with a bag of groceries in each arm, but somehow Lunette managed to do it. She carried the bags over to the corner of the apartment that served as her kitchen and set them down on the table with a sigh.|
"That's a long walk, Chester, especially lugging those bags all the way. And that's not even all the stuff I wanted to get, but I couldn't carry any more."
A cat who had been stretched out on a windowsill, strolled over and looked up at the young woman.
"Don't worry, I got your treats. I wouldn't forget those." She reached into one of the bags and pulled out a small cardboard box. "See, Happy Kitty Sushi Snacks."
Lunette took one of the treats out of the box and tossed it on the floor where Chester ate it eagerly.
"You really like those. Maybe I should try them." She chuckled and looked at the drawing of the shapely catgirl on the package. "If they'd make me look like that, I would."
She plopped down on the couch and spun around so her back rested against one arm and her feet hung over the other. Then she took a treat out of the box and held it up.
"If you want another one, Chester, you're going to have to come here and get it."
The cat jumped up into Lunette's lap and ate the treat out of her hand. When it was gone, she started stroking the back of his neck with one hand while she picked up her phone with the other.
"I guess I better tell Mom what happened." She dialed the number and waited for her mother to answer.
"How're things going, dear?"
"Not so good, really."
There was a short pause, then her mother asked, "What's wrong? Are you hurt? Are you in trouble?"
"I'm okay, Mom. It's just that...well, last some of my friends wanted to go to this new bar, so I drove them over to Cranberg."
"Lunette! You know I don't want you going there. It's not safe."
"It wasn't downtown, Mom. I'm not that dumb. This was way out on the lake shore. It was a really nice place."
"And you got drunk."
"No, I didn't get drunk. I only had a couple beers, that's all."
"That's all it takes to...oh, don't tell me. You were in accident! Are you hurt?"
"There wasn't any accident. I'm fine. I gave the keys to Jenny."
"Yeah, she was just drinking cokes, so she drove all us home."
"That's good, Lunette. That's exactly what you should've done."
"Yeah, only she didn't give them back."
"The keys, she kept my keys."
"She probably was afraid you'd drive somewhere else. Just call her up and tell you're sober now."
"I can't, Mom. I don't know her number."
"Huh? You expect me to believe you don't know your friend's phone number?"
"She isn't really my friend. I just met her at the bar last night."
"You mean some complete stranger has your car keys."
Lunette frowned and Chester nuzzled comfortingly against her. "It's not just the keys, Mom. She's got the car, too."
"Oh, Lunette! Why didn't you give the keys to one of your friends?"
"I couldn't. I mean, they were all drinking a lot more than I was."
"Well, at least you're safe. We'll call the police and they'll..."
"I already did."
"You took care of that yourself?"
"Yeah. Only they don't think I'll get my car back."
"No, they say there's a bunch of people out of Chicago who've been doing this. Hanging out in bars and getting people to give them their keys when they're feeling a little too fuzzy to drive. Then they take them back down there, repaint them and switch the ID number thing with one from a junkyard."
"So there's no chance you'll get it back?"
"Nope, not really."
"This won't be so bad, dear. You're very close to the college. Some walking might be good for you."
"I'm not fat, Mom. At least, not really fat, not like Aunt Ruthie."
Her mother chuckled. "Let's hope we never are. But you know, Lunette, a little exercise is good for anybody."
"Sure, a little exercise, but not having to tug groceries all the way from that store out by the interstate. That must be two or three miles."
"When I was in college I always bought my stuff at Carneby's. Isn't that right around the corner from you?"
"There's something called the Carneby Building, but I think it's got some kind of upholstery boutique in it."
"What about Irwin Brothers then? They were just a block down Main, in the red brick building with the gray stone arches."
"Nope, that's a pottery studio and a yoga place now. I really need a car. I mean these green people are always telling us to save gas and worry about global warming and all that stuff, so why don't they tell someone to open stores with things we really need, like food, close enough that we don't have to drive to them?"
"Well, I guess the world doesn't change overnight, dear. I suppose you will have to get another car."
"I saw this adorable red convertible in the lot on Fourth Street."
"That doesn't sound very practical, Lunette."
"Oh, but it is. It's small, so it won't take much gas and I can put the top down in the summer, so I won't have to use the air conditioning so much."
"And you think you can afford it?"
"Yeah, if you and Daddy help me out a little."
"I don't know, dear. It sounds expensive."
"At least talk to Daddy and see what he thinks."
"Okay, I'll ask your father."
"Great. I better get my groceries put away now. Bye, Mom."
Lunette shut off the phone and gave the cat on her lap another treat. "Guess what, Chester? We're going to get that little red convertible I showed you."