TITLE: Not Too Much
GENRE: MG contemporary
The door of the bus folded open, and a shriek of wind rushed in. It drove the rain up the stairs, splattering Joseph’s feet.
He peered out into the downpour. She wasn’t there! Except for the wind and the water, the street was empty.
“Go on, kid!” the driver shouted.
“But my mom’s not here yet!”
“Guess you’ll have to walk, then. Sorry, kid, but I’ve got a schedule to keep.”
Still Joseph hesitated. His mother always met him at the bus stop. On warm afternoons they walked up the hill together, stopping under the redwoods to look for lizards and banana slugs. And when the weather was bad, Mom always drove down and picked him up.
Now along came the worst, most wettest day of the whole school year, but she wasn’t there. What was he supposed to do?
“Kid!” The driver nudged his back. “Get off the bus, already!”
Joseph took a deep breath. He tugged his hood low to cover his eyes and wrapped his fingers around the straps of his backpack. Then he jumped into the river that covered the asphalt.
The rain came down in buckets, in bathtubs, in waterfalls. There was nowhere to hide from it. Apple orchards stretched away on either side of the road, their branches bare and their roots covered in mud.
If only his mother would come! He squeezed his eyes shut. He’d count to a hundred, and when he opened them, her car would be there.