Journey for Answers – Chapter 25 “Push Forward”

“Guys, let’s face it. We’re not getting out of here real time soon, so mind as well take a deep breath and take a nap. Matthew, you’re feeling like taking one?”

Mike sank into the vans mattress with words trying to reach for Matthew.

“Come on Mike, don’t be so pessimistic about this whole thing. We’ll get out of here, right Matthew?” Caroline looked around for Matthew “Matthew?”

On the road, where no one was around, except them. Where wind blew stronger after each minute passing by and sun heating the van like a greenhouse. When the sun was up, forcing morning to slide into the afternoon. The three of them were there for hours and no car passed by, neither the tractor or people. Despite this being a countryside, they were surprised for not seeing a horse or any agricultural vehicle. The curious face of Matthew tried to stay calm about this. His mind was swirling about the call from Ruth and the fact he can’t do anything about it. He has stuck once again.

“Matthew?” Caroline’s voice snapped him out of depressive overthinking

“What?” he replied

“Should we try for the highway? Sure some will come driving from it and we can start waving hands like crazy once we see someone coming off it.”

“Do you even have an idea about how far it is?”

Mike shoved the realistic side of this situation in the conversation

“Gosh mate, why you have to be so… I even can’t find words for it.” Caroline stated

“Real about it?” Matthew added

“Yeah, but not quite. Anyways, that’s not the case. We should start thinking about how we’re going to get out of here. We can’t sit here all day doing nothing.”

“We sure can.” Mike winked at Caroline and laid further into the mattress

“I think I’ll agree with Mike this time.”

Matthew laid next to him and they began whispering a few words.

“Really Matthew? I can’t believe you’ll turn to this… Mike. How about Ruth, Matthew? Or you already forgot about her, as you forgot about other people.”

“Harsh, perhaps, too harsh even for you Carol.” Mike with raised head said.

Matthew was too deep in his mind after she mentioned Ruth and everything that followed went somewhere in the background – blurry. Every idea in his mind circled around this one word – Ruth. The idea of seeing her again was tingling his feet to get up and start doing something. Matthew spent minutes staring at the ceiling of a van. Looking over the rasta flag, which decorated ceiling above their heads. Thinking of a way to keep moving forward, to Ruth and to know what she was talking about. It had to be something serious if she called him because of it. Questions began pilling up in his mind. Considering the ideas in his head, he finally came to conclusion. Matthews’ feet landed on the ground and he quickly got up, to sit and put together the last idea in his head. He was positive that the plan which he had in mind will work without a doubt. Caroline was standing in front of the side opening of a van, overlooking as them both. Matthew looked into Caroline’s eyes, who were swinging back and forward, outside and inside of a van. After that, he turned his head to Mike, nodded in approval and waited until he did the same. Mike nodded back and began looking into his bag, for another joint to light. Optimistically, Matthew jumped out of a van, turned around and faced both of them.

“We’re gonna push the van until we reach the highway or see someone who could help us.”

Caroline and Mike started laughing. The uncontrollable laugh of his friends made him slightly reddish, he began feeling uncomfortable. Mike continuously laughed, but Caroline saw how uncomfortable Matthew was. She looked at Mike and gestured for him to stop.

“I must say, Matthew, that isn’t the best and isn’t the worst idea. But for now, it’s the only idea we have because waiting here isn’t an option. We have to keep moving forward.” Caroline encouraged him about his new plan and reddish color on Matthews’ face began fading away.

“Mike! How’s that joint coming up?” Matthew shouted

“Just give me a minute.” He shouted back, from the van.

“Don’t worry. Not like we’re going anywhere in any time soon.” Matthew and Caroline chuckled.

The day was getting hotter with every hour. Matthew skin began getting redder and redder, all because last years tan had faded away by winter. His white skin had a tendency to soak up the sun faster than his friends, and that lead him to become a lobster among his friends. Matthew had no time to worry about the heat. His mind was focused on things like water, way to get out of there and Ruth. If it wasn’t for Ruth, he would join up with Mike and would wait for someone passing by. Part of Matthew was glad for pushing his whole body towards the goal.

“Ready.” Shouted Mike from a van “Carol, you smoking this with us?”

“I’ll think about it, but don’t put high hopes on that.”

“Suit yourself, but remember that it’s constantly burning away.”

Mike grinned and joined them outside of a van.

Smoke from a joint filled their lungs and freed their minds from worry. If there was anything that worried Matthew, then it was in the past now. Often Matthew would forget the last thing he wanted to do before smoking, but not now. This time Matthew had a purpose to continue moving, and that purpose was Ruth. Ruth, who apparently knows something that Matthew don’t, and urge to know what it is, grew bigger. Joint was pass the middle when Caroline asked for a smoke. Mike wasn’t surprised as Matthew was. For Matthew, it was the first time he saw her smoking because she always refused. Caroline didn’t care what they think about her, and she was tired of them doing the same thing over and over. How they smoke every time they stopped, but never drank in any of the evenings.

It was over, the joint was smoked and the lungs were filled full of smoke. Their heads were at ease and they could start doing what Matthew intended to do ten minutes ago. He switched to neutral gear, got out of the van and stood beside the driver’s side. With a rolled down window, so he could reach into the van, to steer a van while pushing it. Matthew was in the position before he shouted.

“So, shall we?”

After that, Mike and Caroline placed their palms on the preferred part of a van and began moving the van to the highway. Sun started roasting their back as they began moving the van. Through the all heat Matthew could hear Ruth’s words in his head. The words which kept him pushing forward, to the highway. Not thinking about anything else, but the highway. Mike and Caroline were at the back of a van, chatting between them and Matthew could hear Mikes complaining about the heat. Matthew wasn’t surprised at that. On the afternoon, in the middle between two fields, where suns hot beams weren’t taking easy on them.

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