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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Dirty Bird - Chapter Four



Off to College
 
The next day Robert thanked his Ma and Pa for all their kindness to him.
He said, "Whatever I become I will owe it all to you for you saved me from a life of misery."

He didn’t mention Justin for he didn’t want to bring up a bad memory. What had happened was too fresh in their minds and it still hadn’t had time to fully soak in.

If Robert had a car he could have continued to stay at his folks place but he felt it was time to move on.  He figured it wouldn’t be long before Justin and Cindy would be moving in with his folks for there was no way he could support a wife and child.

Robert moved into a dorm room which he shared with another guy.  His new roommate, Jim was more laid back than Robert was and he figured they would have plenty of time for study and in Robert’s case, work.

Robert had saved up some money but was short of what was needed for his whole education.
 
After Jim’s folks met Robert they helped him get a good paying job working in a ware house. The job and hours fit right in to Robert’s schedule so he was set financially.

After three months there was a break so Robert went to see his folks for the day. While walking from the station he met his former girlfriend and she was quite big. She showed him a ring and said she was married.

He asked her how much longer before the baby would be born. She said two months.
He asked her who she married and how did he feel about the baby not being his?


She said, “He don’t know it isn’t his.  I used the same trick I tried to use on you and with him he didn’t know the difference.  When I told him he had gotten me pregnant he insisted we get married right away.”

“Doesn’t he know it couldn’t possibly be his?”

She answered, “No he doesn’t know anything about how long it takes to have a baby.  One of the guys where he works suggested it wasn’t his and received a good beating for his remarks. After that no one else has said anything about it not being his child.”

Robert said, “Well one way or another it will be his and he can love and care for it which is the main thing after all.”

She agreed, “It is going to be his. He works at the ice plant and handles those huge blocks of ice. It is a cool place to work in the summer. When it gets hot around here, I just go down to the ice house and cool off, sometimes for the whole afternoon.”

Robert said he had to go but it was good to see she had found someone.

She said goodbye and she was sorry it couldn’t have been him.

Robert didn’t answer as he walked away but thought no matter what it would never have been for she wasn’t the one for him.

Robert finally decided to get degrees in design engineering and business administration. It turned out to be a full load and the only time he had to himself was on Saturday night.

He started going to the dances again and the break was just what he needed. Robert convinced Jim to go with him to the dances and he just sat and watched.

Robert started calling him wall flower. Then he asked him if he knew how to dance and he said, “Sure, I just feel strange holding onto a girl.”

“How did you learn all the steps if you didn’t dance with a girl?”

He said, “My mother had a woman come in and she taught us. She wasn’t what you would call a girl for she was old enough to be my grandmother. Then I had to dance with my sisters and they don’t count as being a girl if you know what I mean.”

Robert told him to get up and walk over with him to where the women were waiting to be asked for a dance.

He said, “We need two lovely young ladies to move to the music with us. I’m Robert and this is Jim. He is the better dancer so one of you grab him before someone else does.”

As the music began one of the girls had already picked Jim and had him out on the floor and he was dancing up a storm. It must have been the beat of the music for he forgot all of his inhabitations and the girls loved him.

We went out and had a sandwich and a drink with a couple of the girls and then walked them home. They asked if we would be at the dance next week and Jim said, “Yes we will be there.”

On the way to our dorm Robert said to Jim; “Looks to me like old granny did a pretty good job of teaching you all the steps.”

Jim said, “Well it isn’t that I don’t know how to do all the dances I’m just easily embarrassed.”

Robert told him, “A couple of more dances and you will have a permanent girlfriend if I’m any judge.  Robert asked if he liked either one of the girls we walked home and he said, “I’ll let you know after a couple more spins around the floor.”

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