Amarillo by Morning




Authors Note:  This is the fifth story in a series using the same main characters.  The others in order are:  Wolf Creek Pass, Silverton, Canyon Trilogy, and Las Vegas Nights.  Even though this story will stand alone, I suggest you read the previous stories for background of these characters.  

I want to give credit to my lovely wife for her help in this segment.  She was a tremendous asset over the 'rough spots'  Thanks Dear!



We were still a long way from our destination.  We had filled up at dusk and now it was in the early hours of the new day.  We were moving along I-40, the coach eating up the miles.  Our departure from Las Vegas had been swift and the direction was not what we originally planned, but this trip was important for Mickey.  That was enough of a reason to do everything in my power to accomplish what she needed


The lights from the instrument panel illuminated the cockpit area and Mickey’s face as she handed me a mug of coffee.  It was heated in the microwave but the strong taste along with the caffeine was welcomed.  As I set the mug down in the holder, she laid her head on my shoulder and gave me a squeeze.  I reached up and patted her. 


“We should be there in the morning and you will know more then.”


She sighed and held me tighter.  “I know we're getting there as fast as we can, but I still worry.  Kaitlyn and I are very close.  We took care of each other a lot and now I don’t know what is wrong.”


“You'll find out soon enough.  You and your sister took care of each other?  Didn’t you say your mom was always home?”


“Yeah, but she never would talk to us about the things that teenage girls need to talk about.  I once asked her about something to do with sex and she yelled at me for thinking about such things.  Then she told my father when he got home.  I got a whipping and never asked her anything again.  That’s why my sister and I are so close.”


She sat down on the step that led to the main part of the coach.  Even in the dim light I could see her face was showing her anger and sadness of the events as she replayed them in her mind.  It was several minutes before she spoke again.


“My parents were always distant as far as love to us girls went.  We had to be perfect whenever we were out in public.  We weren’t allowed to wear the clothes the other kids did.  It was always dresses that went past our knees, with socks that covered our bare legs.  We could not speak up even to defend ourselves in the house.  Mother saw Kait kiss the boy next door and washed her mouth out with soap.  She told her that it was a sin to kiss anyone but her husband.  That scared me so I never kissed a guy until I got into high school.”


I thought if she kept talking, maybe she wouldn’t be worrying about her sister.  “So did you ever get any real sex education?”


“Father made sure that we didn’t get into any of those classes.  He is the preacher of a small church, and is very opinionated on sex education.  He tried to shut the entire program down and replace it with some material from Focus on the Family. The only time he said anything about sex or love was to scare us into waiting for our husbands.”


I remembered the white marks that I had seen earlier.  “Honey, I saw some white lines on you thighs.  Did he…”


“Yeah, he did.  He and Mother would consider any breaking of the rules as a sign that we were being ‘worldly’ or under the influence of the devil. We had a ritual that we had to go through.  When we were to get a spanking, we were made to stand at the back of the couch and lean over.  My dress would be lifted and my panties lowered.  Then we would be lectured about what parts of the Bible that I had sinned against, as Father would lay into my butt.  When he finally got tired we would have to stand and apologize to him for the offence, then kneel and pray until he figured we were repentant.  As we got older, things progressed from a hand to a belt.  He did stop lowering my panties after the time I was on my period and he spotted the pad. 


"Those marks came from when Father caught me and a boy in the church basement.  Charlie was my first crush and he had finally noticed me.  We started sneaking away from the youth meetings at the church.  I didn’t know anything, but Charlie taught me how to kiss, and how to enjoy him touching me.  I didn’t understand what I was feeling, but I knew it was the best thing in the world.  He got me hot enough that I let him put his hand under my dress.  His fingers touching my panties were enough to bring me off.  Then he pulled them to the side, and pushed his fingers into me.  He went too far and broke my cherry, but I was so far gone that I hardly noticed.  I knew I was in love.


"We continued for a couple of months, meeting every Wednesday.  Right after the Bible study, we would sneak out.  The last time we were kissing and he had his hands on my breasts, outside of my clothes.  Charlie had taken my panties off and put them in his pocket, but we had not gotten so far that his hand was on my pussy.   I knew I was in trouble as soon as the door opened.  He literally threw Charlie out of the room.  Father dragged me up the stairs by my hair.  I had never seen him so mad.  He threw me into the car and drove home with me in the back seat, crying.  I knew I was in a major degree of trouble.


"We got home and Father shoved me into position over the back of the couch.  When he raised my dress and saw that my panties were missing, he seemed to go crazy.  The closest thing at hand was an extension cord.  He wailed into me with everything he had.  After about a dozen licks, the pain was so intense, I passed out.  I woke up on the floor bleeding and hurting bad.  I crawled up to my room and didn’t come out for 3 days.”


She was crying now that the memories coming back.  I reached down and grabbed her hand.  “Honey, nobody is ever going to touch you like that again.  I’m not into things like that and anybody else will have to go through me.”


She smiled up at me.  As much as she succeeded in being her own woman, strong and independent, she still craved comfort and protection. I was glad to be that person.  We drove along that way in a relative silence, comfortable in each other’s company.  Soon, I saw a truck stop just off the highway.  I was feeling tired so we pulled in off to the side and went back to take a nap.


Three hours later, we were back on the road.  We were in west Texas and headed to her parents' place just west of Amarillo.  I roused Mickey from the couch so she could tell me where we were headed.  We made it through the city and were soon sitting in front of a nice bi-level home in one of the better subdivisions.  Mickey decided to go in by herself at first to find out what had happened to her sister.  I could see the dread in her expression, but she squared her shoulders and went to the door.


As soon as she went inside, I made a pot of coffee and went to the bathroom to shave.  I had just sat down with a cup when there was a knock on the door.  I looked out to see a man about my size, probably in his mid fifties looking at my rig.  I opened the door and asked if I could help him.


“Yes what are you doing parked in front of my house?”


“You must be Mr. Kirk, Mickey’s father.”


“That is Reverend Kirk and I had a daughter named Michelle.  She ran away and turned from the Lord.  Who are you?”


“David Robbins.” 


I offered my hand which he took reluctantly.  I offered to let him in for a cup of coffee, but as he was refusing, Mickey came out of the house.


Seeing her father brought her up short.  Her demeanor became very stiff. 


“Hello, Father.”


“Hello, child.”


“Please sir, I would like to get inside so we can go to the hospital and visit Kaitlyn.”


“At least you remember your manners.  Go on.  But your mother would probably like for you to come back.”


“Yes sir.”


The way Mickey was acting reminded me of a young errant child.  With what she had explained last night, I could understand why.  But it pained me to see her treated this way.  She was very quiet as we moved out to the hospital.  I knew she would talk when she felt ready so other than her giving me directions, the trip was quiet. As we neared the hospital I pulled over.


I got out and walked up to the vendor on the corner.  I climbed back in the coach carrying two dozen red roses. 


“Your sister should have some flowers, and I couldn’t get some for her without giving you some as well.” 


She gave me a kiss and a hug.  “Did you know this is the first time anyone ever bought me flowers?”


“You didn’t get any from your prom?”


“I was not allowed to go to the prom.  That was a sin according to Father.”


“I’m sorry, Honey.  You deserved a lot more from your teen years than what you got.”


“Yeah, but I am making up for it now.”  She grinned up at me.


“We both are.  Now let's get to the hospital so you can see your sister.”


When we walked into the room I was struck by the young woman lying in the bed.  She was a double of Mickey.  A little shorter and without Mickey’s curves, but I imagined that she was what my lady looked like at that age.  The only other difference was the bandages on both wrists.


But to Mickey, this was of little importance.  She rushed into the room and hugged the girl, tears streaming down her face.  “Kait!  I am so glad to see you.  I have missed you so much!”


They spoke quietly for a few minutes, then Kait looked over to where I was by the door.  She whispered something to Mickey, who whispered back.  Whatever was said caused Kait to giggle.  Mickey motioned for me to come over.


“Dave, this is my sister Kaitlyn.  Kait, this is my boyfriend Dave.” 


I smiled at her and set the flowers on the bed.  She looked at the roses, then back to me. 


“I always bring flowers when I meet a beautiful woman for the first time.”


The blush that crept from her face to under her hospital gown was amazing.  Mickey was trying to keep from laughing.  I stayed just a few minutes more and then announced that I would be in the bus whenever Mickey was ready.  Kait told me to come back soon and I left the room.


In the bus, I grabbed a Pepsi and settled in with the laptop.  I connected to the Internet and checked my e-mail.  Then I transferred some funds into one of my checking accounts so the ATM would be available.  Paid off what we had charged in Vegas and contacted the card company to check on the status of Mickey’s charge card.   With all the business done, I logged off and started writing on the sequel to my latest novel.


I was napping on the sofa when Mickey came in.  She was relieved to see her sister, but it was overshadowed by anger that she had bottled up.  Since it was mid afternoon, I pulled out some stuff for sandwiches and made one for her.  As she finished her lunch, I asked if she was ready to talk.


“Dave, I am so mad! Mother wouldn’t tell me why; she just said that she had tried to end her life. Kait told me what happened to her.  She had been out on a double date, since that was all that our parents will allow. They went out past town after the movie.  The other couple took a blanket and went over a small hill to be alone.  Kait and her boyfriend were making out, and she got really turned on, but when he started to put it in her she got scared.  She tried to fight him off, but he went ahead and shoved his dick in her anyway.  After he came in her, he rolled off.  She was sitting there crying when the other couple came back.  The other girl consoled her and helped her get herself back together.”


“The boy did that to her?  Did she call the police?”


“No, that happened a couple of months ago. She couldn’t say anything for fear that Father and Mother would find out. Last week, after she had been feeling bad for several days, she went to the family doctor.  The nurse ran a pregnancy test and it came back positive.  Kait was terrified.  She had tried to call me in Pagosa Springs, but found out the phone was disconnected.  She didn’t know what to do.  She called the boy, but he denied everything.  She couldn’t face the wrath she knew would come from Father.  She said she felt that she had nowhere to turn so she went into the bathroom, got into the tub and slit both wrists.  Mother found her and called the paramedics. 


"They patched her up and then let our parents in to see her.  Mother was weeping that she didn’t understand and Kait wouldn’t say why.  Finally the doctor came in and told Kait that the blood loss had not hurt the baby.  That was when the cat was out of the bag.


"Father went ballistic about how she had shamed him by being a slut and a whore.  She tried to tell him that she had been raped, but he wouldn’t listen.  He just went off about how she had tempted the boy by being alone with him.  That bastard even went so far as to suggest that Mother should have let her die for being a fornicator.”


By now the anger was starting to take its toll on Mickey.  As I sat and held her, I could feel myself getting more and more angry.  Anyone who would treat their daughter in such a way deserved to have the same heaped upon them.  I wanted to throttle him myself.  And any mother that would allow their child to be treated like that doesn’t deserve them.


Mickey saw the anger building in me and she started looking scared.  I suddenly realized that the anger reminded her of her father. 


“Honey, I am NOT angry at you. Your parents are another story. Has Kaitlyn thought about her options?”


“She wants to keep it.  Dave, I feel like it is kinda my fault.  If I had been here, or if she would have been able to get hold of me…  Maybe I could have helped somehow.”


I pulled her tighter into my arms.  “Mickey, there wasn’t a thing you could have done.  Now that you are here, maybe you can help her out.  I don’t know how, but maybe we can think of something.” 


We sat there holding each other, her thoughts obviously on her sister and mine on how to make her feel better.  In the end, neither one of us accomplished our goal.


We ended up going back to her parents' house.  This time I went in with her.  Her mother invited us in and we sat at the dining room table.  Gladys Kirk was a small woman, her once brown hair going gray and tied up tight to her head.  Her face might have been pretty at one time, but now was pinched up into a constant scowl.  She was polite to me, as I was to her, but you could almost cut the tension with a knife.  She questioned Mickey on how we met, and what had been happening in her life.  Gladys went into the kitchen to bring out some cake, then asked Mickey to help her.  The ploy was as transparent as glass and I smiled as I saw Mickey roll her eyes.


At first I heard Gladys’ voice but not her words as she asked about our relationship.  Mickey’s voice was not so quiet.  “Yes Mother.  We have been together for several weeks.  Dave saved me from freezing to death on that mountain.”


More whispers, then, “No, I am not a kept woman as you call it.  I stay with Dave because I want to.  We love each other, even if you can’t see that.”


They came back in and Mickey moved to sit right next to me.  Gladys was once again playing the concerned and helpful mother; smiling at both of us even though the strain was there in her face and body movements.


Mickey finally brought up the subject of Kait.  “Mother, when will Kaitlyn be released from the hospital?”


“The Doctors say she will get to come home day after tomorrow.  They want to check then to make sure that the child she is carrying is still all right.  I suppose I will have to ask your father to pick her up, but you know how busy he is with church business.”


I spoke up then.  “Getting her home will not be a problem.  We can bring her back here.”


“But it would inconvience you to have to do that.  After all, I didn’t think you would be staying that long.”


“It would be no problem at all.  Mickey, I mean Michelle, will probably want to be there to see her anyway.  And if that is where she wants to go, that is where we go.”


“I see.  Well, you must stay here until then.  Michelle can stay in her old room, and I’ll just make up the guest room for you.”


Mickey then spoke up.  “That will not be necessary.  The bus is very comfortable.  It is just like a home on wheels.”  She could see some doubt so Mickey invited her to go out and see it for herself.


Mickey escorted her mother to the bus with me following behind.  When my late wife and I rebuilt it, we had spared no expense.  Even with a coat of road grime and dust, the royal blue and gold exterior still gleamed.  The bus was almost 50’ long, being a converted Trailways Scenic Cruiser.  Mickey unlocked the door with her own key, which did not go unnoticed by her mother.  Since Mickey had joined me, my usual clutter was replaced with order, and this was one time that I was glad she kept our house.  As they started through, I hit the remote start on the generator.  The initial rumble quieted down and the interior lights winked on. 


Gladys was impressed with the entire setup, admitting that it was indeed a full house on wheels.  One thing she did bring up was the lack of a second bedroom.  “Don’t you get tired of sleeping on the sofa, Dear?”


Mickey just smiled.  “Mother we both sleep in the back room.   I will nap on the sofa, but I haven’t slept there since that first night.”


Her mother was scandalized, but managed to get it under control.  “Well yes.  I am sure your father would not approve, but you are living your own life now.”


“Yes, I am and I couldn’t be more happy.”


“Now I must get back to the house and start your father’s dinner.  He likes to eat shortly after he comes home from the church you know.”


“Why don’t you and father join Dave and I for dinner?  I can have a meal ready in no time at all.”


“I will ask your father when he gets home.  If he agrees, that would be fine.”


With that, I handed Gladys my cell phone and offered to let her call Dwayne, Mickey's father.  The conversation was short, but they would be coming for dinner.  Gladys went back to her house, and Mickey started on the preparations.


Ninety minutes later, there was a knock on the door.  I opened it up to let Mickey’s parents in.  The table had been expanded from its usual size to accommodate the guests.  Mickey had gone all out.  The stuffed chicken breasts looked perfect.  There was a tossed salad, and mixed vegetables to go along with it. I offered them water or soda, and poured their choices.


Conversation was muted during dinner.  The subjects mainly flowed around the places we had been, and other general, safe subjects.  Kait was never mentioned.  Dwayne seemed to be on his good behavior; much different from his gruff demeanor I had seen earlier this morning.  He was surprised when he asked how I made a living and I told him that I had retired except for doing some fiction writing.  Mickey spoke up and told him that I had sold a very profitable business and still received residuals from that plus some very good investments.  He glowered at her for speaking up when she wasn’t asked, but he kept his mouth shut.


Once dinner was over with, Gladys’ offer for us to stay in the house was again extended.  We politely declined and they went inside alone.  As soon as the door was closed, Mickey slumped into the sofa.  I let her sit while I cleaned up and put things away.  She commented that dinner went well, but she had been tense the entire time.


As soon as I got things in order, we headed for the bedroom.  While Mickey used the bathroom, I stripped down and she was soon cuddled against my chest.  We talked only a few minutes before she dropped off to sleep, exhausted from the lack of sleep and the tensions of the day.


We awoke the next morning earlier than normal.  As soon as we were cleaned up and dressed, we headed straight to the hospital.  We stopped in the cafeteria for breakfast then went up to Kait’s room.  She was in a much better mood today after seeing her sister again.  I took the chair at the foot of the bed and enjoyed watching the interaction between the two sisters.  I would interject a comment once in a while, but other than that I just listened to them talk.  Mickey described the conversation she had with her mother and the dinner.  Kait was almost in tears when Mickey told her about her mother’s reaction when she realized that Mickey and I slept together on a constant basis.


We had been there close to two hours when an orderly came in and said they had to take Kait for another ultrasound.  We left with the promise of coming back later.  The next few hours were spent getting the coach serviced, restocking our supplies, and then making a trip to a mall that Mickey insisted was of vital importance.  We made it back to the hospital late in the afternoon.


The sisters were still talking when dinner was brought around, so we took our leave and grabbed something from the cafeteria.  On the way back, I told Mickey to go on up and I went to find the head of security.  After explaining the situation, I received permission to park the coach at the far end of the lot.  Once I got the coach set up for the night, I went up to Kait’s room.  Gladys showed up around 8:00 to check on Kait.  She fussed about Kait’s ‘mistake’, and how sorry she was that Kait had not come to her.  She went from fussing over Kait to scolding her with lightning speed.  After she left, Kait was exhausted.


“I don’t know how I am going to be able to handle this for a whole seven months.  Between the two of them, I will be insane before the baby is born.  Father says I have shamed him and that I am some kind of monster!”  Mickey just hugged her sister, but I started to ask questions.


“Kait, you are 18 aren’t you?  Could you move out and get your own place?  I know that you could get help.  And the boy who raped you would have to pay whether he wants to or not.”


“Father would never allow me to have my own place because it would look bad on his image.  Mother has suggested a home for unwed girls, but I guess she hasn’t found one yet.  I think he wants to use me as an example of what happens when you turn away from his teachings.”


“Have you had any counseling since you have been here?  You should be talking to someone.”


“I have talked to a nice lady since I have been here, but Father told them that his assistant pastor will take over.  Some of the old ladies from the church came in and talked and prayed for me, but they didn’t care about the why.”


We then talked of lighter things again.  I noticed that she kept watching me and when I would smile at her or compliment her, she would blush beet red.  It started getting late, so we told her that we would be outside and gave her the cell number if she needed anything.  Then Mickey and I went out to the coach to bed.


I awoke early, letting Mickey sleep.  I had a feeling that this would be a tough day for everybody.  I was dressed and sipping my second cup of coffee when Mickey came out.  She plopped down on the seat, and I poured her a cup of her own.  She mumbled something that was close to thanks and took a sip of the hot liquid. I had learned early on that Mickey was not a morning person.  When the cup was empty and her brain was once again functioning, she went back to get ready for the day.


We walked into Kait’s room to find the doctor there.  After he found out that Mickey was her sister, he explained that Kait would be released from the hospital as soon as the paperwork was ready.  Her bandages would be fine for a couple of days but they would have to be kept dry and changed as soon as they got dirty.  He had removed the stitches that day but she was to take it easy.  He also let us know that he thought therapy would be most helpful.


Kait was happy to be leaving the hospital, but was dreading going back home.  Mickey asked if she had any clothes that she could wear.  When Kait pulled her clothes out to get dressed, she realized that they were bloodstained.  Mickey went back to the bus to get some of hers and I stayed to talk with Kait.  She wanted to know all about what Mickey and I had done since getting together.  I was telling her about being in Vegas when Mickey returned.  I was ushered out and the curtain was closed.  From the excited whispering and giggling from behind the curtain, I could tell she liked the choices.


The curtain was pulled back to reveal a very pretty young lady.  The jeans were a little loose on her, showing the difference in the sister’s maturity, but they still showed off a well-rounded butt.  The t-shirt was tucked in showing that she didn’t have a bra on.  Her nipples showed clearly through the material.  I cast an appraising eye then commented that I thought we should get out of here soon before the two of them attracted every male on the floor.  This got me a grin from Mickey, and a huge blush from the younger one.


On the way down, the sisters were talking as I followed, carrying the roses and Kait’s other belongings.  I barely caught Kait’s whispered comment.  “My nipples are really showing.  Do you think Dave noticed?  I would be so embarrassed.”


Mickey glanced back at me and I grinned.  She leaned down and whispered, “You can be sure he did.”  This brought another giggle from Kait.


I left them alone with the nurse by the front entrance and went to get the rig.  Kait’s jaw dropped when she saw it pull up.  I opened the door and Mickey helped her sister in.  As soon as she settled in, I pulled out, heading across town to the Kirk home.


The reverend’s car was in the drive when we arrived.  Mickey was going to take Kait in by herself, but I talked her into to letting me go as well.  Gladys greeted Kait at the door, first hugging her, and then telling her not to ever do anything so stupid ever again.


The reverend walked into the room and all hell broke loose.  He took one look at Kait and exploded. 


“Now your daughter is dressing like a common harlot.  Girl, get yourself up to your room and remove those heathen rags.  First she tempts a boy, and then tries to commit the sin of suicide.  Now she walks into my house, a house blessed by God, dressed like a common slut.”


Kait tried to explain.  “But Father, I had nothing else to wear.  Michelle let me borrow these so I wouldn’t have to wear that bloodstained dress.”


That is when Dwayne slapped Kait across the mouth.  “Shut up harlot.  I did not tell you to speak”


It was then that Mickey lost it.  The pain and humiliation that she had endured and she had watched her sister endure came boiling out. 


“JUST A FUCKING MINUTE!!  I have put up with you and your pious garbage all my life.  You have degraded both of us ever since we were born.  You never showed us any love or even respected us as human beings.  You’re the reason that Kait is pregnant.  You never told either of us anything about the facts of life.  You know something?  I was just damned lucky I didn’t end up in the same condition.  Remember when you caught me with that boy?  If you had showed up 10 minutes later, you would have seen me on my knees with him pounding his cock into me.”


Both parents were speechless, as was Kait.  I thought she was done, but she was just getting started. 


“I learned about birth control AFTER I thought I was pregnant.  I wasn’t, but the doctor at the clinic was appalled that I knew absolutely nothing about birth control.  I have the Norplant now.  Kait wouldn’t be in this condition if you had used the common sense you were given.  And she wasn’t tempting that boy.  He fucking RAPED her.  She tried to stop him.  And all you can do is call her names and slap her around.  You raise your hand to me and I guarantee you will be wearing your balls as earrings.”


She finally ran out of steam.  I could feel her trembling under my hand as I restrained her.  Finally Dwayne got his voice back. 


“I do not have to take such talk from you.  You will leave now and I will handle Kaitlyn as I see fit.”


As he moved to grab Kait, I spoke up.  “You touch her and I will make sure you are in jail before the day is over.”  Then my voice dropped lower.  “That is if you are not in the hospital.”  The threat made him stop and reconsider.


Mickey moved away from me and went to her sister.  Kait had a red mark on her face from his hand.  “Kait, do you want to stay here?”


“I don’t think so, Michelle.  I can’t stand being treated like this.”  Mickey looked over at me.  I had a thought, but needed to check something. 


“Let me make a quick call.  Why don’t you and Kaitlyn get her stuff together and we will get out of here.”


I stepped out onto the porch and made a couple of phone calls.  Getting the answers I wanted, I walked back in to see Dwayne blocking the girls.


“You are not taking anything that I paid for.  A harlot like you doesn’t deserve such things.”


Kait was looking scared, but I interjected, “Just leave everything except what you really want.  There is a mall nearby that has what you would need.”


I got Kait to come over to me.  I put my hands on her shoulders. 


“Kait, I just talked to my sister and her husband.  They would be overjoyed to have you come stay with them.  If you are willing, they will help you with your pregnancy, and then whatever comes later.”


Kait looked up at me, her eyes huge.  “You mean they would let me stay?”


“More than that, they would love to have you.  I told them what a wonderful person you are, and they are alone in that big house since their two kids are in college.  Plus, you would be great company for my sister.  Harold is often gone in his job, so you would be a help to her.”


Kait gave me a big hug.  “I would love to go.  They would have to be wonderful people, if they are anything like you.”  She hung onto me with her head on my chest until I gently peeled her off.


Dwayne had to give one more shot to retain his control.  “I refuse to allow her to go.  Harlot or not, she should stay here and remain within God’s grace.”


“She is 18.  That is legal age in the state of Texas.  If you wish, we can call the police right now and they can explain the law to you right after you explain how she got that red mark on her face.”


He knew he had lost the battle.  “Be gone from here then.  I will have no more to do with you.”


Gladys had to try one more tactic though.  “But you can’t want to leave your family.  We love you, and want you to stay here.”


Finally Kait confronted her mother, probably for the first time in her life.  Her mood was not anger as I would expect, but instead was very sad. 


“Mother, you never really loved us.  We were just objects for you to show off.  You never gave us the love and support that we craved.  You never stood up for us, even when you knew father was being cruel.  If I had felt that I could talk to anyone do you think I would have slit my wrists?  I couldn’t face being alone and isolated any more.”


She gazed at her mother waiting for her to say anything.  When she didn’t, Kait fixed a steely stare at her father and turned to walk out of the door, Mickey and I following.


Kait made it to the sofa before she broke down in huge sobs.  Mickey was once again the big sister, taking care of Kait just as she had for years.  She rocked her in her arms and stroked her hair, telling the girl that she was going to be all right.


Rather than stop today for the things Kait needed, I just headed to the interstate.  This had been a visit that I would have gladly spared Mickey from.  However, she had finally been able to come to grips with her relationship with her parents, and was able to finally help her sister.  Both of the girls had come through as better, stronger people -- for they had their dignity.


Kait fell asleep in the bedroom and Mickey took her usual seat on the step.  “Dave, I’m sorry that you had to see all this.  You don’t think less of me because you have seen my parents, do you?”


“Honey, they are not you.  If anything, I have even more respect for you than I had before.  Going through all that, and still being the wonderful person you are, shows just who you really are.”


She stood and hugged me around the neck.  “I love you Dave.”


“I love you too.”


She went back into the bus to get a Pepsi and to relax.  I was content to be heading toward my sister’s house.  I had not seen her for a couple years.  Spending time with Mickey's family had made me realize it was time to tell my sister how much I loved her.


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