“We…” Charlie began.
“Are lost,” Ivonne interrupted. She put down her phone, which hadn’t been able to get signal or a GPS lock for almost an hour.
“Well, maybe a little…” Charlie admitted. He sighed and put his blinkers on, pulling over once they were past the bridge. The weird, crooked bridge that had no business being on the route they were supposed to take. They should have been in Chicago an hour ago.
“A little, dad?” Ivonne asked. Her emotions boiled inside. She hated being a typical teenager but she was so mad right then. Karen was supposed to meet up with them at Big Jim’s for dinner, and now she couldn’t even call her to say what was happening. They hadn’t seen each other forever. And her dad just had to insist that he ‘knew the way’ and didn’t ‘trust that GPS thingy anyway’. Agh!
“Okay, fine,” Charlie said. “I have no idea where we are. Happy now?” He turned off the engine and started looking through the glove-box, then unfastened his seat belt to rummage around in the massive paper storage that was the back seat.
“Why don’t we just turn back and look for the highway?” Ivonne asked. “What, you think we’re going to use a paper map and find some magical, faster way?”
“That would cost us almost two hours,” Charlie said. “There’s got to be a more direct way from here. We can’t be that far off… maybe it’s in the trunk…” He slammed open the door and went around to the back.
The sunlight was fading fast, leaving Ivonne a bit nervous about being this close to the road. Twilight was the time people forgot to turn their lights on. Out here on a country road, someone might come up too fast, not see them, not stop… just like… Ivonne bit her lip and held back tears. She was over that. That’s what she’d told herself, and that’s the way it would be. That was ten years ago.
“Found it!” Charlie shouted, waving a coffee-stained map in the air. He grabbed wildly at it when a sudden gust threatened to take it away, making Ivonne laugh despite herself.
“Get back in here, then!” Ivonne shouted. “It’s getting cold with the door open.” She looked away as he returned to the driver’s seat. No reason for him to see her reddened eyes.