“Are these seats taken?”
He glanced at the seat between us. “No.”
There was something unrecognizable in his softly accented English. I studied his clothing and face for a clue.
“My parents are coming. My husband’s parents too.” I rested my coat and bags on the adjacent seats. “Do you have family coming?”
Again, the unrecognizable accent. And so, I chattered on about the show, about my daughter, about his son. We talked about the honor. And though he sometimes smiled, it seemed that every word trailed off in sadness.
“You must be very proud. Will your family be coming to the finals?”
He shook his head.
“Do they live abroad?” And in his nod, I sensed a choked-back sob.
I tried to fathom where could be so far, what could be so sad. All around us, excited parents filled the auditorium. I turned to him. “Where do they live?”
This has been an edition of What Pegman Saw. I went five words over the limit this week, which is 155 words more than I wanted to write. This felt like one of those homework assignments where you want to yell at the teacher. Oh well. Done my duty to Pegman this week.
To read more stories inspired by the prompt, click here.