Night

The sounds of the soldier’s voice stayed with Lily. She heard his measured tone in her mind—the way he said “Likewise” when he donned his camouflage patrol cap when leaving Waffle House. It was now after midnight as Lily drove back to her place. The March night sky was clear. Tall pines lined the two-lane blacktop highway to Glim. She thought of the soldier from Waffle House, and of the embarrassing scene with Darlene, Brandon, and their LTD in the Wal-Mart parking lot early that morning. She bristled at the thought of encountering them again.

She thought also of why Desiree Dramal had asked her to work with the spring play. How and why was Desiree Dramal involved with theater? Had Nathanael prompted that? If Nathanael wanted Lily’s help with the theater department and the spring play, why had he not asked her himself? And why was Beth being allowed to work with Desiree at all concerning Covenant? Since Covenant’s board had replaced her, she should have no say concerning Covenant, right?

The tall pines flickered past Lily’s car windows on her return drive as rapidly as the questions flashed upon her mind. When she pulled into her place, it was nearly one a.m. She opened the apartment door. At once she saw Alice’s book about hearing from God on the kitchen table. Suddenly Lily felt ashamed for not having read and returned it to Alice. Lily knew Alice was sure to ask about the book again Monday.

Lily laid her car keys and purse on the small table by the apartment’s entrance and walked over to grab the book. She glanced at the back cover and read two of the reviews: “A feast for modern Christians discontented in their pews” and “A welcome antidote for an era when doctrinal wars have created spiritual orphans.” Lily rolled her eyes and returned the book to its place on the table. It was one a.m. and she had drunk too much coffee. She removed her shoes and checked her door. She began to undress. She lay upon her bed in sweat pants and t-shirt, and looked over at her nightstand bearing Bronte’s Wuthering Heights, Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, and Shakespeare’s sonnets. She laughed at herself, at the absurdity of her day, and turned again to the moors where Catherine and Heathcliff thrashed in their doom.

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