This was not what she needed right now
Tamara stood in the center of the crowded elevator, facing forward, staring at the numbers as they counted down. She was parked on the B5 level, deep underground. At almost every floor the lift would stop and the doors would open, the ride was interminably slow. Sometimes people would try to squeeze on; sometimes they would frown, gesture with their hands, and say something about waiting for the next one.
Whoever was standing behind her had their hand on her ass. She couldn’t see who it was as they were so packed into the cramped space that she couldn’t turn enough to look behind her. This was not what she needed right now but she decided to let it go. She thought that they were so jammed up on this car that everyone in this thing might have a hand on their ass. She took a deep breath and held it till the doors opened at the next floor, the twenty-first.
“Excuse me,” she said, “this is my floor.” She began trying to move forward; trying to get to the doors before they slid shut again. As she stepped into the empty hall the hand fell away. She turned and saw that she was the only one who had exited the lift. She pursed her lips and exhaled.
Was this what I went to school for? So I could get groped in a crowded elevator?
Tamara was sitting on the couch waiting; waiting for Grandma and Grandpa to get there. Mom was in the kitchen fixin’ dinner. She was making chicken fried steak with mashed potatoes, and a cherry pie. Mom always cooked a fancy dinner when Grandma and Grandpa came to visit. Tamara was always on her best behavior then too. When they came to visit it was always special. Tamara smiled when she thought about her grandparents.
Grandma wore sweaters, gave the best hugs, and always smelled really good. Tamara loved to sit next to Grandma, to snuggle in close. Grandpa was magic. He could make quarters appear out of thin air or pull them from behind her ear. He always kept candy in his pocket and shared it with her.
Tamara heard the car pull up, in front of the house.
“They’re here!” she shouted and jumped up running to the door. She waited with one hand on the knob and when the knock came she pulled the door open and jumped into her Grandma’s arms.
Grandpa tousled her hair, “I brought you somethin’, Tammy.” He said.
“Eh, nothing special.” He grinned as he reached into his jacket pocket.
I have to find a way to tell them
Tammy got home first and collected the post. As she rifled through the letters she saw the one that she had been expecting. She clutched it to her breast and pushed the rest of the mail back into the box.
Upstairs in her bedroom she tore the envelope open and unfolded the single sheet of paper that was inside. She was in! The letter announced that she had been accepted and offered a full scholarship at State. It was like a dream come true. Mom would be disappointed. She had wanted Tammy to go to the Junior College in town for her first two years.
Dad had wanted her to go to North Texas, his alma mater. It didn’t matter, this was what she wanted.
I just have to find a way to tell them, she thought. She clutched the letter and went back downstairs. She thought she might rummage through the kitchen for a snack and wait for her parents to get home. Everything was starting to come together just as she had hoped.