Pamela Travis focused on the pavement in front of her as she negotiated her Grand Cherokee down the forest road. The young mother had never driven this stretch of the county road before and its unfamiliarity worried her. Pamela glanced to her right and nervously smiled. Her fourteen-year old son Bobby slept peacefully in the front passenger seat, blissfully unaware of his mother’s worried thoughts.
Although it had been sunny and clear when the two left Kensington Corners for the surprise visit to her sister, Pamela had noticed the dark band of clouds in her rear view mirror shortly before she made the turn onto the forest road. She had hoped to cut some time off the trip to her younger sister Robin’s cabin by taking what appeared to be a shortcut on her map. But it was now clear to her that the forest road was too narrow to allow her to travel as fast as she had hoped. It looked like they would not make it to Robin’s until after dark. The silence in the Jeep made Pamela even more nervous. She glanced once again at her sleeping son and smiled. Pamela loved to dote on her boy. He was becoming a man, voice cracking and everything, he’s even a bit taller than herself and Pamela thought that this might be the last trip she would be able to take with him before he became more involved with his school friends and the inevitable distancing would begin. Pamela felt a pang of loneliness and realized that she wanted the company of her son.