The boys know they are never allowed to play or cross the street alone. Kevin decides it will be okay if he holds Allen’s hand – looks both ways – to dash across the street to visit friends. They have actually done this before, except they didn’t connect the fact that Sally had talked to their friends’ mother, and both mothers stood by the street to tell them when to cross. Today, his idea doesn’t work out well. It is a busy narrow two-lane through street where even thirty miles an hour is fast.
Hearing the horns and loud voices outside, Jane and Heather run out of the house and across the yard. They hear a siren in the distance. A frantic man is carrying Kevin in his arms to another car. Jane runs after him while Heather grabs Allen, sitting him down on the grass checking for injuries. Finding him physically alright, she comforts him.
“I’m taking this kid straight to hospital, and not waiting for anybody,” he yells over his shoulder as he slides into the back seat cuddling Kevin with all the protection he has to hold the gash in his head. As the car speeds away, out of desperation, I begin to pray, “Please God, help us. I cannot lose Kevin. I’m sorry I didn’t watch him close enough. Please God, don’t blame him for my fault. We love him so much.”
When the police arrive and talk to witnesses, they conclude that, in his excitement of doing something he wasn’t sure about, Kevin lead his brother straight into the side of a car. They’re calling the hospital to verify Kevin is there, and get a report on his condition. One officer is clearing the traffic, and moving his patrol car to the side street next to the house, while the other is taking all the kids back into the house. They wait for Sally to get home.
It is Friday afternoon. As her usual routine, Sally is downtown picking up the special sale at the fish market, and stopping by the back door of the bread company, where she buys a big tray of fresh misshapen honey buns for a dollar. These are our treat on the weekend.
Nearing the house, Sally spots the police car. Her heart goes wild as she finally manages to park the car and rush to the house. She has no idea what to expect. An officer meets her at the door to assure her everything was under control. She automatically started looking around to find every kid.
“Where’s Kevin?” The officers explain what happened, while she holds Allen in her lap.
“Jane, are you alright?”
I tell her yes, trying to sound confident.
Heather spoke up, “We’ll stay together, Mom. Nobody will go outside.”
“Take over, I’m going to the hospital,” as she places Allen in a comfortable chair and heads for the door with her keys in her hand.
One officer stops her, “You cannot drive now – you’re too upset.”
“Well, I’m going now one way or another. Either you take me or I’m driving. It’s your choice.” Oh man, I’m thinking to myself. Please understand when she has that tone, nothing will stop her. Evidently, he’s really listening!
The lady officer stays while he drives Sally to the hospital – with lights flashing. She finds that Kevin has a brain concussion as well as the stitches, and will be held overnight for observation. He is in good hands. With the rest of the family to take care of, she leaves him sleeping, and tells his nurse she will be back in a few hours to spend the night with him. The officer finished his report, drives Sally back home, and both officers leave their telephone numbers should she need them.
My stomach is burning from the fear of the thought of possibly losing Kevin. With the realization of what’s coming next, dread grips my heart and I wish for an instant I was dead. Dad will be home in thirty minutes. How will he react to the news…