The first view he caught of his Father annoyed him further, a typical gesture of his hands raised, palms outward-facing to indicate ‘stop’. Typical, he thinks I can’t keep it together for five minutes, Vance furies to himself. He strides confidently up to his Father, looking as though he may “bowl” him over. “What happened, I know she was ill but-…where’s the duty nurse I want to speak to her!” His Father tried to placate him, waving his hands toward the floor as if to steady himself; “Vance. You are in control of your emotions, take a few deep-…!” No sooner had he uttered the words before Vance charged past him, down the corridor like a walnut fragment that had been launched out of it’s shell by an over-enthusiastic, walnut-cracking granny! (We’ve all met one!)
Vance re-embarked upon his collision course with his Father as he demanded information; “Where’s Mum, why isn’t she here?”. His Father made no attempts to soothe his temper, stating calmly; “She’s busy with her campaign, I spoke with her and she’s promised to come home in a couple of days after her meeting”. The laugh echoed down the hallway threatening to disturb other patients as Vance shouted; “Typical! Selfish through and through….I need to get out of here, call me when you have the funeral arranged” hypocrisy was a common trait that he shared with his Mother, although he was oblivious to it.
The nurse’s kind words invaded Vance’s mind as an unwelcome house guest as he made his way down the corridor. What is the matter with people…using religion to justify their own inadequacies because they can’t face the thought of taking responsibility for their own actions. Makes me sick! Vance outraged to himself. He had been packed off to Christian Summer Camp as a child and had had a terrible time resulting in him being sent home early (but this is a story for another time). Reaching the entrance to the hospital, he fumbled around in his coat pocket for his cigarettes and lighter; three times did he have to strike the Zippo upward against his thigh before successfully igniting the cigarette. Drawing the contents deeply into his lungs, he flicked the ash defiantly, announcing his violent intentions at the world. Even the sun seemed to be in dispute with him today and it bore down upon him, making sweat form across his brow line. He severed the phone from his pocket lining of his jacket, bringing shreds of the fabric along with it; “Oh for cheese and rice sake!”
He tapped his finger on the screen several times, moving the phone in front of him. Vance was so vexed, he just didn’t care; “Yeah, it’s me, I need to pick up the kids from school soon”. The voice on the other end of the phone, clearly female in origin was slightly muffled and hesitant; “You promised! Fine…’least let me get their stuff ready. Don’t forget they are bringing the gopher, Henry home from school!” Vance merely confirmed; “Yeah”, the utilization of drug slang being very familiar to the two.
Later on in the evening….
Alice always knew how to calm him, annoyingly so. Her presence to him was akin to sugar being attached to bacon, it both felt so very wrong and so very right! Why did she have to be a Lesbian, another unfair event that the universal had thrown at him. He enjoyed the challenge, but in his heart he knew he would never be able to “win” Alice, so Vance contented himself with the secret photos of her on his laptop. She really should learn to password her phone! He smiled to himself as he thought on this, the thought flooding his mind like a strong liquor that coats the throat with warmness and fuzzy feelings.
The events of the evening milled their way through his mind in his now calm state as Vance headed for the Monorail. He actually felt pretty good considering the earlier events of the day and entered his flat, depositing his jacket to the nearest surface that wasn’t littered with whiskey glasses and empty pizza boxes. Better check Reddit I bet some Donkeybutt has down-voted me for trying to educate people, Vance ruminated as he entered the room only to find someone collapsed on the floor, from this distance it didn’t look like they were breathing!
Author’s Note – Vance’s experience of Christianity has not been good. He doesn’t believe and argues that if there is a God, He is distant and unloving, not caring about us and leaving us to our own problems etc. I’ve struggled with similar issues myself in my walk with the Lord, but this couldn’t be further from the truth, God is intimately involved in our lives (Hebrews 13:5)even if we don’t see it or are far away from Him. We shouldn’t be too quick to ‘feel’ as though we are alone and thus, base all our evidence off of merely how we feel (Ephesians 2:8). Our feelings can often lead us astray. God is always with us and we are always benefactors of His love, even if we don’t yet know Him as our personal Savior (1 John 2:2). God doesn’t wander off distractedly having created the earth (Romans 8:19), He hasn’t left us to our own doom, rather He is working all the time (2 Peter 3:9) for the good of those he loves (which is everyone). In short; God is never AFK!