“Trish, the coat belongs to your mother. Actually, it is Ted’s unless we pay the taxes. Come back with me now. We’ll work something out. I promise you.”
“She doesn’t deserve the coat. These people need the money it will bring.” Anger rose in her face and she looked as she was about to slap him, but her hand fell away. Her face became dark with hatred.
Jim, recognized the look in her eyes and knew he had lost her. She turned to go upstairs but he called out to her, “Trish, my darling daughter, we have to talk. Don’t go. Please, don’t go.”
She turned to him, as having second thoughts, but her words were stinging. “Stop calling me Trish. My name is Magdala, and I have been saved from the evil world that you came from. I have been given the truth and salvation. I swear to you. I want nothing more from you except the key. Don’t ever come again. I don’t want to see you. I never want to see you again.”
He was left standing there with outstretched hands, which finally groped uselessly for the sticky bannister. He clung to it as though his life depended on it. After a few minutes he was quickly ushered out by the man who hadn’t wanted to let him in in the first place.
The long walk to the hotel in the freezing temperature was of little consolation. Tears dried stiffly on his face. A cold wind blew his coat open and he endured it as punishment. Trish, the dearest person in his life and his family, was lost to them all. And it was his fault, all his fault.
He sat on the bed in the dingy hotel room, deciding what to do. A phone call could not convey the agony he felt and would only hurt the others with their unanswered questions. He had to pull himself together first. He started the car and drove home. Alone.