Kitty begins to trust
“Well, ain’t that a shame.” Alva said when she heard that the attorney, who’s name was Martin Goldblatt, had closed his office very hurriedly three years ago, sublet his office space, and disappeared leaving no forwarding address, except a post office box in Coral Gables, Florida.
“Where’d you say that was anyway?” she asked Kitty.
“Cal says it’s just north of Miami,” Kitty said.
“He say what good it do for me to run after him?” Alva asked.
“Probably none,” Kitty told her. “You’re going to have to pay the tax and everything else no matter what.”
“Well, then, let that man be gone for good. He got his reasons. I got mine. Lord, Lord. No matter now, anyways,” Alva said and took a big sack of potatoes out of a brown bag stationed on the floor by the door to the backyard.
“Alva, are you OK?” Kitty asked.
“Child,” Alva began, “there’s misery and there’s misery. I don’t know which kind I got me.”
Kitty didn’t know what else to say. It was the first time she had seen Alva upset. She didn’t know what to make of it. Kitty thought it must be the tax problem. Finally she said, “It’s only a matter of money, Alva. And Cal says you can always borrow against one of your properties. You’re a wealthy woman, you know.”
Alva looked up from the potato sack, eyebrows slightly raised in confusion as if Kitty was speaking to her in a foreign language. “Whatchoo saying?” she asked.
“You’re wealthy,” Kitty said. “Cal says … ” she stopped, unsure how Alva would take the information.
“Oh, that man you workin’ for now? What do he know ’bout such?” Alva stated bluntly, as if anything anyone might say about her would only be an approximation of right and could just as easily be totally wrong. It was a way of guarding oneself, a way Kitty knew well. But she also had begun to trust Cal. First on the trip over to Manhattan and then, later, after they had gotten the information they needed, at the Italian restaurant he had chosen for lunch.
“So tell me bout yourself,” Cal said after they had ordered.
“Oh, there’s not much to tell,” Kitty said. “I came up here from Virginia and decided to stay is all.”
“Why do I think that’s not the whole story?” He asked. “Matter of fact, it’s not even half a story. What made you leave Virginia?”
“Well what about you?” Kitty countered. “What’s your story?”
“I’m an open book. Divorced, father of two, a girl and a boy. Wife decided after ten years of marriage she wanted a career, so she became a realtor because it was a quick way to get certified and get out of the house. She hit a boom in sales and made more money than she ever thought possible, and then I caught her in a clinch with another realtor from her office and that was that,” he said matter-of-factly. But his face told a different story.
“Oh, I am sorry. How are your children doing?” she asked.
Cal sighed. The food came. They stopped talking for the moment.