The bus

Валерий БЕЛКИН | Проза


The bus

The strong wind took his breath away. Winter didn’t let up, and he was already tired of putting on heavy warm clothes every morning. Spring tricked him, warming the town for just two days and then running away from the frost. His dream also wasn’t going to come true. He has already broken broke his piggy bank, counted the coins and discovered that he didn’t have enough to buy the gift for her. But, there was just a week left before her birthday. If he wouldn’t be able to buy the gift he chose, he has to give her flowers. It would be boring. So, he has refused himself to have lunch at school, he hasn’t even bought juice or other drinks. But the gift he was thinking about was very expensive. Sometimes he felt despair, but he didn’t want to change his decision. And he didn’t think about asking money from his mother or his friends, because it didn’t suit a real man to do so.

A bus with cheerfully glittering windows drove up to his stop. The boy admired the bus. He thought how nice a vehicle it is, because it never arrives late and it is so large and cozy. The passengers walked through the wide open doors slowly, but he rushed onto the bus, slightly shivering from the cold. He sank down with delight into his favorite seat by the window.

Rumbling quietly, the bus moved along the route. There was a smell of cherry in the vehicle compartment. The driver was smiling broadly in the mirror. The passengers were talking peacefully amongst themselves. Silvery handrails on the seats gleamed again and again in the rays of the coming sun. And the boy was swaying slightly with the movements of the bus. Indeed, in such a vehicle you can travel the world, he thought.

The bus came to his stop. He stood up, it was time to go. The doors opened, letting him out. But they didn’t close after him, as if in hope that he will come back.

However, the boy already hurried to his mates. He ran, bouncing with impatience. He was looking forward to the joyful meeting with his friends. A long day with successes and maybe failures was ahead of him. But he would keep his head above water as he was old enough.

The bus flashed its headlights invitingly for several times. And that was in broad daylight. But the boy didn’t look back. The bus sighed sorrowfully, closing the doors, almost gave a farewell honk, stood for some time and went further away. A schedule is a schedule.

The road was excellent. The wind dropped. The sun brightened up the weather. But nothing pleased the bus. The bus really tried, but couldn’t forget the boy. The seat in the bus compartment retained the warmth from his body. His fresh breath on the window was as yet slowly fading. And the floor was still listening to his footsteps.

It was hard to tell when the bus would see the boy again, because its route should be changed next day.

About the author:

Valery Belkin is a short story and fairy tale writer. He was born February 25, 1946 in the city of Chelyabinsk in the South Urals. In 1970, he graduated from the Pedagogical Institute and worked as a teacher of Russian language and literature till 2011. His short stories “The notes of a Berlin teacher” and “The notes of a Berlin homeless” were published in the newspaper “Russian Berlin”. In 2013, he published a book of short stories, “Lost in Space”. In 2015, he published the second edition of “Lost in Space” and a book of fairy tales for children, “The Incredible Adventures of Anya and Slava.”

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