Sleep was impossible for Ida – Previously Loved Treasures
“Grandma,” Ida muttered every so often, trying on the name for size. It fit perfectly.
Oddly enough she did not hear from Sam Caldwell at all that week, and she also did not receive a bill for his services. Ida simply assumed he was in Cherry Hill tracking down James and his family, which was all well and good with her.
On Sunday evening Sam Caldwell telephoned. “I’ve put together a report on my findings. Would it be okay if I stop by tomorrow morning to go over it with you?”
Ida had waited thirty years, and another day seemed too much to bear. “Did you find James?”
“I’ll give you all the details tomorrow,” Caldwell replied.
“Why can’t you just tell me now?” Ida asked, but instead of giving a reason, Caldwell just said he’d be there at eight the next morning and hung up.
That night sleep was impossible for Ida. She was too hot with the blanket on and too cold with it off. The pillow seemed lumpy, and the ticking of the bedside clock became a troublesome distraction. After listening to the tick, tick, tick for more than an hour, she wrapped the clock in a flannel nightgown and stuffed it into the bottom drawer of the chest.
Even with the clock gone, Ida twisted and turned. There were brief moments when she could imagine Caldwell had found James. Not just James, but his entire family. When that happened the warmth of happiness settled over her but it was always short-lived, for the fear of truth followed close behind. It came, clamped an icy claw around her throat, and screamed in her ear.