Friday, April 1, 2011

Chapter ten, page one

Before I could slow my own breathing, Quinn returned to the car.  His pace spoke volumes.  He walked right up to the car door, opened it then quickly slammed it shut again.  I heard him mumbling in French as he paced away from the car.

Slowly I exited the vehicle.  “Quinn?”

His tightened eyes turned on me.  “What?”

I was afraid to approach him.  His eyes burned with fury.  I leaned against the hood of the car.  “I’m sorry.”

“Everything is gone.”  He hid his face in his hands.  “I stored photographs of my mum there.  Gone.  Anna’s things were in my house.  She will need those when she gets out of the hospital.  But they are all gone now!”

Once again his compassion for others was obvious, as it bled through the cracks in his anger.  “I’m so sorry Quinn.”

“No.  Do not speak.  It’s His fault, not yours.”  He pointed upward.

Then he shook his fists into the sky.  “What do you want from me?”

His anger startled me.  The temples beyond his darkening eyes were pulsing.  How could you blame him, really?  The last twenty four hours have been nothing short of a disaster.  However I had never envisioned his soft and happy nature resorting to these kinds of emotions.

He stepped towards me.  “What does He want from me?  What possible explanation can He offer for this?”

I have never had to stand in the gap for God before.  I felt unqualified to say the least.  I cannot answer Quinn's question of why.  I can only attest to the nature of God and the abundant love of Jesus.  However, I don’t think now is the time for that.

Quinn didn’t pause long enough for my answer anyway.  “He took my business and my house.”  He turned to the heavens again.  “What’s next?  My car?”

He closed the distance to the car in one single leap.  His fists came down on the hood with a fierce vengeance.  His feet kicked the tires.  “You can have it!  Take it all!  Take it!"  He collapsed on the hood of the black car with a thump.  "But you can’t have Anna!”  

Then it was quiet.  The sound felt deafening after the abrupt end to his tirade.  But I could hear his breathing.  It was laced with pain in each quick and laboured breath.  

How could I possibly show the love of a Saviour to this broken man?  As I stood on the opposite side of the car hood all I could do was pray for Quinn.  

In the last day since I’ve met him he has lost almost everything.  And he is right to fear what might come next.  Based on Anna’s condition today she can’t possibly have much time left.

Suddenly his head rose from the car.  “Come Cathie.”  It wasn’t an invitation.  His voice carried an edge.  Slowly I made my way to him.  My hope was to offer him comfort.  He needed to know he wasn’t alone.

As I edged around his car towards him his arm snaked out, grabbing my waist and pulling me in like a tractor beam.  His arms surrounding me were tight and secure.  He needed me.  So I wrapped my arms around his neck.  Suddenly his hands lifted me up under my arms and planted me onto the car hood.  His forehead rested firmly against mine.

An anguished whisper caressed my nose.  “Cathie, He is going to take you from me too.”

I moved his face back a few inches from mine.

“Quinn.  You are wrong about that.  God is not taking me from you.  I don’t live here, remember.  In six days I am flying home.  That’s all.”

His eyes were darker than usual and rimmed with moisture.  “It matters none.  You will be gone just like everything else I dare to care about.”

He pressed his lips hard to my forehead.  Then my cheek.  And my neck.  He continued to kiss me with a palpable desperation. 

I pressed him back.

“Please do not go.”  His adam’s apple bounced as a large lump travelled down his throat.  “Do not leave me Cathie.  I need you.”

Taking his face in my hands I searched his eyes.  “Quinn, listen to me.  I am here for you now.”

As my words took root he straightened his body, gained his composure and withdrew from me.  I suppose my words weren’t as comforting as I had planned them to be.

He slid me off the hood.   “Get in.”  Then he crawled into the driver’s seat. 

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