“Weather be damned,” Anna said, grabbing her coat off the hook. Damn snow. But, it was almost Christmas, and if she didn’t go now, she’d be going to the mall on Christmas Eve. And there was no way that was happening.
It had stopped coming down so hard at least. She shouldn’t have a problem getting out there, as long as the roads had been cleared.
She pushed her door open then stumbled back as a figure loomed over her on the porch. “Morgan,” she said, her hand on her chest, “you scared me.”
“Sorry,” he said, his voice gruff. “I wasn’t expecting you to come out right that moment.”
“Of course. What did you want?” Morgan didn’t usually just come over to her house. No matter how much she wished he would.
Even with her porch light on, his face was in shadows, but she saw the worry flash through his eyes. “Have you seen Raina? Kacy called and said she can’t find her anywhere around the house?”
“You mean she actually looked for her this time?” Anna blurted and caught Morgan’s grimace.
“Apparently. trust me, I ripped into her about that last time. I still can’t believe she went all night not knowing her own daughter was missing. And that the judge wouldn’t even consider rescinding the unsupervised visitation after that. Apparently she hadn’t put our daughter in enough danger.”
Anna reached out and laid her hand on his arm. “I’m sorry, Morgan. And no, I haven’t seen her. The last time she hid out in the diner kitchen. Why don’t we go down and check there?”
“Thanks, Anna. Raina is…she’s my everything.”
“I know, Morgan. We’ll find her. If she’s not at the diner, we’ll call out some people to search. But, we will find her.”
They had just headed down the street when someone called out his name. They turned and saw Morgan’s sister’s girlfriend waving at them from her porch. Morgan stood where he was, but Anna tugged on his arm. “We have to find her,” he said, his voice strained. “Not visit.”
“And maybe they can help,” she reminded him.
When they reached the porch, Anna saw a little face peering out from behind the doorframe. And she let out a long breath. “Thank God.”
“Raina, come out here,” Morgan said, his voice trembling. His daughter ran to him, and he dropped to his knees to gather her close. “You had me so scared,” he said. “You have to stop doing this.”
“I’m sorry,” she cried. “I just want to go home with you.”
“Not tonight,” he told her. “You have to go back to your mom’s tonight. But, I’ll be picking you up tomorrow night and bringing you home. Okay?”
The girl looked very much like that was not okay with her. But, she nodded. Morgan took her hand and headed for the sidewalk. He glanced back at Anna. “Thanks.”
“I didn’t really do anything,” she said.
“You kept me from totally losing it,” he said.
She watched him walk away and let out a sigh. “I should get going. I still have to finish my shopping.”
“You getting something special for Morgan?” Susan asked with a laugh.
“Like he’d even accept it from me,” she muttered. “Anyway I’ll see you around. Thanks for taking care of Raina.”
“She’s practically my niece. I don’t need thanks.”
Anna headed off, walking back to her house to get her car. And, yes, she was going to get something for Morgan, whether he would accept it or not.
This Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt was to use weather/whether in any way we wanted. I’m plotting out Morgan and Anna’s story right now, so I figured I could write about them and this just kind of took off.