The rain was coming down so quickly that Range struggled to see. He could tell that scarlet was nervous
And he did his best to be calm. She held on to Lucas to protect him. It almost sounded as if she was humming, but he couldn’t focus on his passengers he had to pay attention to the road. He was getting closer to home but he was having trouble seeing the road and the lightening was something terrible. He was about to pull into his drive when lightning flashed and a crash so loud crushed his truck. His truck spun and glass crashed. He couldn’t see anything and now Rain and possibly hail pelted them in the truck. He looked over at Lucas. He was fine but he was crying and limbs from a tree laid in his lap. Scarlet was knocked out and blood was rolling down her face. He unbuckled his seatbelt and thankfully he could move he took off his plaid shirt and laid it on the gash on her head. He had to get her into the house but was worried about how to get the 3 of them in.
“Lucas, I know you are afraid but I need you to grab my neck and hold on ok. “ Lucas nodded.
Range got out of the truck but the tree was in his way so he got back in the cab and moved Lucas and pulled scarlet towards him. She was lifeless bit he still managed to pull her under the steering column and hefted her into his arms then he told Lucas,” Get on my back and hold on. “
Range pressed through the driving rain and got to his porch as quickly as he could luckily he never locked his doors he leaned for Lucas to climb off his back and said, “ open the door son.” Lucas opened the door and Range took Scarlet to the guest room and laid her down he checked for a pulse and he found one. He ran to the bathroom for towels and pressed hard on her head. She had scratches everywhere. But he knew he had to get Lucas and her warm. “Lucas, take all your wet things off and wrap in this towel.” He handed him a thick towel and put him on the bed by his mom. He was scared but was being brave.
Range unbuttoned her top and pulled it off of her there was a laceration on her side. It didn’t look deep but he put a towel on it. He pulled her pants off of her they were soaked and a cut was visible on her right leg . He added a towel to it. He pulled the sheet over her. Then he grabbed a comforter and put it up to her neck . He picked up his phone and called the police and told them what happened and told them he wasn’t sure what next to do. The police said help was on the way. He grabbed another comforter and covered her. He grabbed a wash rag and wet it. He went back to her and washed some of the blood off her face. Thankfully, the bleeding had slowed. He knew she probably needed stitches. He threw Lucas’s clothes in the dryer and went back to her. Lucas was steadily crying silently. “It’s ok buddy, your mom is gonna be just fine. “ Range tried to comfort him. “Come here.” Lucas slowly came to Range. Range wrapped him tight in the towel and held him. Soon the tears stopped. He held on to the boy and tucked him into his chest. He realized the boy had fallen to sleep.
Range seen police lights but chose to stay inside and the ambulance crew came in with a stretcher albeit wet they were there. Smelling salt was given to be sure she was ok. She groggily woke up and in pain. They next assessed her head injury and asked some questions. The police officer was talking to Range.
“ There is no way you can remove the teee or get in or out of the drive. “ the officer explained. “ I will take you to the hospital.”
“ Thank you.” Range replied.
The stretcher was brought in and Scarlet was lifted onto the bed and an neck brace was on her for stability. “Range, don’t leave me.” Scarlet said as they wheeled her away. The officer said ,” He will be right behind you.”
At the hospital they took Scarlet back quickly and started doing X-rays and they brought her back to her room. Scarlet asked for Lucas. The nurse said” He is in the lobby with his Dad, we will have them come in after the doctor sees you.
When the doctor came in he decided that Scarlet would need stitches and the nurse had cleaned the wound and the doctor started his suturing. Small talk about the accident happened and Scarlet didn’t remember anything but lots of rain. The doctor explained that apparently a tree had been hit by lightning and smashed Range’s truck. Limbs hit her but not Lucas and Range.
“Thank God they are ok.” Scarlet said.
The doctor finished up and looked at the laceration on her side and leg. “I believe these are superficial and will heal on there own. Your X-rays look fine no fractures. In seven days the stitches will need to be removed make an appointment with my office tomorrow.He handed her a card.
“Can my son come in now?” Scarlet asked.
“Sure I’ll have the nurse get him. “ with that the doctor left.
A few minutes late Range walked in with Lucas asleep on his shoulder. “ He has been asleep for a while. “ Range offered. He laid Lucas next to his mom. She wiped his hair away from his face. Silent tears ran down her face. “ I worried that if I died what would happen to him. He is my everything.” She kissed his forehead.
“ Everything is gonna be ok. “ Range told her.
The doctor came in. “ You can take your wife home , make sure she don’t over do it. Get up slowly and rest. Pain meds you can get over the counter. See me in seven days to have sutures removed. You can get dressed and the nurse will be in to give you discharge instructions. Any questions?”
They both shook their heads no and the doctor left.
The nurse came in and Scarlet asked to have help getting dressed. Range had forgotten her clothes were laying on the floor At his house.
“Um, you came in without clothes because you was soaked, I didn’t bring anything else.” Range said blushing.
The nurse told them she had some disposable scrubs and she could wear them home.
Home? Scarlet shook her head and chuckled insides I don’t have a home she told herself mentally. This was a fine mess.
The nurse helped her dress. Range had picked up Lucas and stepped out if the room first. A wheelchair would take her to the front door.
When Scarlet arrived at the front lobby Range , Lucas, and a police officer was waiting for her. They wheeled her out to the patrol car and they helped her get in. The officer took them back to Range’ s farm. She had to walk to the house which was hard at best. The rain had slowed to a sprinkle which they were grateful for.
The officer asked if he could do any more for them and they assured him that he had gone above and beyond for them. With words if gratitude he left.
Range spoke first,” you and Lucas can have the guest room tonight and we can work out details later. I will look for you some clothes to put on.” With that he left her on the chair and went to Caroline’s closet. Range knew Caroline was a bit larger than Scarlet but something would suffice. He remembered that she had a tote of clothes that she kept for when she lost weight. He dug it out and brought it to the spare room. He then searched for another comforter for the bed due to the ones he used needed washed. He quickly changed the sheets and pillowcases. He could hear Scarlet talking to Lucas. She had a soft voice and it was reassuring him that she would be ok. Then he heard the boy say,” I wished he was my daddy. He is so nice.” Scarlet didn’t say anything for a moment but then said,” Buddy you can wish for anything, but it’s prayer that changes things. “ We only want what God wants ok?”
“ ok Mommy.” He said.
“ I’m very sleepy.” Lucas said. “ But can I have a drink?”
“ I have some juice in the fridge. Help yourself. But I can get this for him. Would you like anything?”
“ Thank you Range. Do you have coffee?” Scarlet asked.
“ Sure thing. “ Range went to the pot and made her a cup of coffee and got Lucas some juice. He brought Lucas a cookie in case he was hungry.
Lucas ate his cookie and drank his juice. The room was mostly quiet.
“ We were lucky tonight. “ Range finally said.
“ God was definitely looking over us for sure.” Scarlet said.
“ Please let me know if you feel weird or have issues.” Range requested.
“ I will.” Scarlet said.
“ There is a tote of clothes on the bed that was my wife’s old things she never wore. Not sure if there is anything that will fit but we can make due for tonight. Do you not have anything? Clothes?” Range asked.
“ I have a confession. “ Scarlet was careful. “ can I put Lucas to bed and change then tell you?”
He looked dumbfounded at that moment but hopefully he would let them stay still.
“ Of course.” Range said
Scarlet laid Lucas on the bed and tucked him in the covers. She kissed him and told him how much she loved him and told him good night. She then took some of the clothes from the box and found an old tee shirt and some sweatpants. She pulled her undergarments off due they were soaked and she needed them to dry. She was small enough that Range wouldn’t even know. She came back to the living room and took a sip of her coffee and started her story.
“ I lived in Utah, and I was married. My husband was very abusive. He began being mean to Lucas that is when I left and divorced him. He wouldn’t leave me alone so I moved away with an aunt inKansas. However, he found me by tracking my car plates and was making threats. It was then I knew I had to ditch my car. I was given money for a train ticket and some food money. I went to the train depot in the middle of the night asked how far I could go trying to make it to an Uncles house in Illinois and With what money I had it only took me as far as Missouri . So we began walking, until we stopped at the cafe you was at because we were exhausted. We had just used all the rest of our money eating and had no other options. We hid in the back of your truck not knowing where we would end up. After you went in that night aand lights went out we ran to your barn and we have been staying in the apartment you have. Our bag is hidden there. And the other day while you was gone we came into your house for food. I need to tell you how sorry I am for stealing from you. I only took what was necessary to feed Lucas and myself. I was worried I would get caught and go to jail that’s when I started walking knowing we could get a ride with you. I did tell Pastor Joel. “
Range sat quietly. He wasn’t sure what he should say.
“Well , thanks for telling me. I’m sure the last few months couldn’t have been easy with a four year old trying to escape a bad situation. How do you know he won’t find you here or hasn’t followed you?”
“ Well first, I stopped using any bank cards or atms, I also don’t have a car for him to track. When we registered for the train ticket my aunt bought the tickets in her name and the name of her son. They didn’t ask for ids only tickets. So hopefully he has no clue. I plan to check in with a friend back home to see if he is up to. She try’s to keep me updated. Rachel has helped me in so many ways. Tomorrow I plan to call her to check in. I use either pay phones or I use a code on phones to stop him from tracing calls. “
“ Well let’s get you better first then we can make a plan. There is food and drinks in the fridge please make yourself at home.” Range said. “ Good night.”
“ Good night Range , thanks for everything.” Scarlet replied.