Its been a while since I wrote down such a thing. Last time it was right after that gas station, where I met her – Hanna. That gas station changed everything for me, literally. Every morning from then feels like a bliss. It feels like almost a love story between us, but none of us wants to admit it. Whenever we bring it up we end up chuckling about it, and then there is her or me who jumps on the other for a cuddle. I think we don’t want to make this serious. We simply want to enjoy the rollercoaster so to speak. Thinking about rollercoaster brings me back to that time when we went to the amusement park, and you were scared shitless from the rollercoaster. I remember how it made you sick every time you took a drive. Put a smile on my face every time I remember it.
But the story isn’t about me and Hanna. Well, it is, but not for this time. This time we got stopped by the police because apparently, we were speeding, but Hanna knows that her van can’t run at such speeds as the policeman was speaking about. He was polite, at least seemed at the beginning. We refused the fact that we crossed the speed limit and then he said.
“Guess then we can go to the station and have a look for ourselves. Don’t we?”
He made a clear gesture with his face and we agreed. We both knew that there wasn’t a particular reason why he stopped us. I think he saw us both as two uneducated girls. Can’t deny that we look young.
It took half an hour when we arrived at the station. Dudes in the station began greeting each other with handshakes. The place was packed with the smell of doughnuts and cheap perfume. I could smell the grease from the food floating around, and it almost made me sick as I entered. None of us both wanted to be there, and none of us wanted to pay for a ticket either. I didn’t minded at all, but Hanna on the other hand. She was getting furious on that poor cop. Her tone was raising up as she talked to the police and lowered as she spoke to me. I loved her for it.
We were in the station for twenty minutes already and the guy just brought up the footage. It was catched on shaky black-white camera. The license plate was barely recognizable. Both of our faces were deep into the screen, awaiting our van to pass the camera. Once it did, I heard the sound of policemen’s spit sliding down his throat. He knew we were innocent and I saw on his face that he was trying to figure out how to make it up to us. Hanna was going all crazy on him once again while I stood back, watching. Poor policemen’s face reddened and he didn’t know what to say or think. His mind was empty. The only thing he could process was Hanna’s words until the other policemen joined. He was calm, calm enough to calm down Hanna with simple.
“He just followed the protocol, I apologize for the misunderstanding.” And he turned to the poor policemen, completely ignoring our presence, and could only pick up a few words he was saying. “Joe, remember those two kids who disappeared ten years ago?”
Joe nodded with curiosity.
“Do those two look familiar to them, but just way older.”
He paused and pointed to the diner across the street, where girl and boy sat, They were in their twenties, somewhere around twenty-six if I had to guess. Joes face lid up in surprise, he couldn’t believe what he was seeing. I never saw such sparkle in the man’s eyes before. While he was glancing over the diner from the station’s window, we began picking out stuff and moving slowly to the exit. We did what we came for and it was time to go for us. Our stuff was in our hands and we were starting to walk when Joe shouted for us. We turned our heads and he was skipping towards us.
“Girls, I apologize for that thing before, I had a tough morning.”
“You can’t blame it on the morning.”
Hanna wanted to sound serious to him
“Please, let me buy you a coffee at the diner. It’s the least I can do.”
His face went full of sadness and happiness at the same time. I couldn’t make it out what he was feeling, neither did he, I think.
Diner was small but big enough for the crew of policeman, two strangers, and one vagabond to fit in there. At the time we entered there were three people besides us. The two friends and stranger who was deep into the daily newspaper. The place smelled of coffee and pancakes. I wondered for a few seconds if this is the way they make most of the cash her. My stomach gurgled once I inhaled the freshly brewed coffee. I didn’t want it before, but now, now I urged for it.
Joe bought us coffee, nodded and went to the table were sat both friends. I couldn’t help myself to observe the reactions. I was surprised. They recognized each other but none of them stepped forward for hugging, they simply nodded at each other and Joe sat down beside them. I saw smiles on their faces. The tear which slid from Joe’s eye, hitting the surface of the table. Joe extended his arms across the table and they all held them together. It looked lovely and my heart pounded like crazy from seeing this. Watching their reunion gave me hope about you, brother.
After staring for a minute, Hanna poked me with her elbow. She gestured that we should join them, listen to their story and share ours. I don’t know why, but I accepted – we did just that. They were kind and didn’t refuse for us to join them. We quickly learned that they haven’t been home for the last ten years. How they were approached by an old guy when they were fifteen, saying that they must go with him; saying that if they’ll go, they will change their lives forever. One of them called Markus and the other was Stefanie – Stefanie, and Mark.
“At first we thought that he’s is some kind of a pervert, but then. Then I saw something familiar in that old man, ten years ago.”
Stefanie didn’t stare away from Joe while telling a story.
“We both thought so. But the old man kept explaining to us that he needs help from us, somewhere in a distant place. In the place where no one would look twice. He was smuggling refugees and he needed support.”
Mark added with a smile.
“The old man was right, it did change our lives forever. He let us leave at any moment we wanted to, but there was no need for that. We wanted to help the people – me and Mark.”
She smiled and we continued talking for half an hour about the refugees and then another half an hour about you, brother. How I miss you, and how I keep looking for you. They went because they felt like they needed to change their lives, but that’s what we all want to do eventually, right Stephan?
Joe was first to leave, telling that duty calls. Once he raised from the wooden bench, we all followed his example and were on our feet. Standing beside the table and hugging each other. It was lovely to live through this reunion. I hope we’ll have one like this, one day. I truly hope.
Once we left the diner Stefanie wished me luck finding you. She said how the family is precious and we have to keep each other safe. After the small pep talk, we hugged each other. I and Hanna went for a van, while they both followed Joe to the police station. We didn’t hurried with our departure. Instead, we balanced each other against our shoulder and watched how they all three went inside. Now I have this word in my head which give me hope. You want to know what it is, right brother? I will spell it out for you: Reunion. Now the hope is brighter about it because I believe in such things now. I believe that people meet each other once again, no matter how long it takes. Take care now, I’m right behind you.