The heat inside the bus was stifling. Jenna pulled her scarf off and folded it into a rectangle before tucking it into her backpack. She stripped off her gloves and hat. She shoved the gloves into the hat and added both of them to her bag. She tugged the zipper on the bag until it closed over the bulging center section. The young man in the aisle across from her watched with a little smile. “Would you like me to put that in the overhead rack for you?” he offered.
“No thanks. I’ll want something out of it soon enough.” She laughed a little bit.
“Are you riding all the way to Topeka?”
“I am. You?”
“Close enough. I’ll probably ditch at the last food stop and walk from there. I’m headed to my parents.” He grimaced as though that were something to be avoided. Or maybe as if there were something wrong at home. Jenna bit her lip. She did a quick judge of the other people filing onto the bus. None of them were even close to her age.
“Want to sit together?”
He crossed the aisle and leaned across the seats in front of her to look at the same group. “Oh, Jesus. That’s a tour group. Yeah, let’s sit together. Do you need the window?”
Jenna shook her head. She crossed the aisle. She stripped off her jacket and shoved it into the rack over their heads next to the roll-on suitcase he’d brought. “I brought books enough to last me. Well, I think I did at least.”
“Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones?” he asked wryly.
She laughed. “Mysteries mostly. And some random things that my Mom got for me for my birthday a few years ago. I’m willing to share those too. There might be some sort of fantasy there.”
“Nice to meet you.” He settled into his seat. “You travel the busses a lot?”
“Not really.” She bit at her lip. “It was the first thing I could afford to get the Hell out of Pennsylvania.”
Will grinned at that. “I hear you.” He settled into his seat. “So, what do you think? Will be lose any of the group before Topeka?”
Jenna snorted. “If this is any indication of how well they’re organized? I’m guessing at least three by the middle of the country.”
“I’m going to catch a nap. Poke me if I start to snore, will you? I camped out at the station last night.”
He slid down in his seat and closed his eyes.
He didn’t start to snore.
And it felt just right when his head lolled to the side and landed on her shoulder.
She opened her favorite book and brushed a kiss across her husband’s bangs. “Happy Anniversary,” she whispered.