The Absence of Light
Part 6We all got up, and walked with Dolly to this bright red phone booth across the street. There, we emptied out our pockets, and amidst the mess of old receipts, bubble gum wrappers, and fallen buttons we found exactly 50 cents. Perhaps the most valuable 50 cents in history!
Dolly took a deep breath, smiled at us, and walked into the vessel that might teleport her back her mother and forward to “step 2.” We all watched from outside, nervously, as she slid each coin into the dispenser; a nickel, a penny, a dime, another nickel, and the last 4 pennies. Then she pressed the phone number-without hesitating, without trying to remember what it was, without looking at sheet of paper, and held onto the phone for dear life.
There were a few moments of complete stillness, as if the entire world was holding its breath. And then her lips started moving; slowly first, and then faster and faster, and then slowly again. Her grip on the phone loosened. Half-way into the conversation, a smile blossomed on her face, and didn’t go away until finally, she nodded and slowly hung up the phone. Not a single tear was dropped the entire time.
She exited out of the booth, all flustered and shaken. She walked back to us, and just stood still for some indefinite period time. And then suddenly, I saw it. A single tear drop falling from her eye and sliding down her cheek like a friendly stream. Then another, and another, and another until her entire face was glittering just like the night sky under which she stood.