Charlotte – part 13

At a quarter after seven Friday evening, Charlotte finally made it to Portland. She took one of the first exits she found and drove around for a bit trying to find a hotel. This would be much easier if her phone wasn’t dead in one of her bags. While trying to get back to the freeway, she came upon a cheap motel. Perfect.

Charlotte parked in the lot and checked out a room for a week. She took her keys and walked around the block to stretch her legs. She felt like all she had done was sit for three days. Oh wait, that’s all she had done!

“Wow. I made it.” Charlotte breathed incredulously to herself. She grabbed some food and took it back to the motel with her. She sat on her bed and ate her food, watching a cooking show she found on TV.

Tomorrow, Charlotte would finally bring all her bags in. Tonight, she just wanted to relax and sleep. Charlotte took a long shower and crawled under the sheets. She tried to sleep but felt wide awake. She turned the TV back on but found nothing interesting. Opening up the drawer of the nightstand, she found a Bible.

“Eh, why not?” Charlotte said out loud to herself. “Maybe reading this will bore me to sleep.”

Soon, fatigue set in and Charlotte drifted off to sleep.

***

 

Having come up with no answers, Ryan made himself some supper and went to bed early. He didn’t realize how tired he still was from his trip. This weekend, he would spend time trying to figure out what to do about Charlotte.

Despite having gone to bed early, Ryan slept in late. He didn’t wake up until after 9. He didn’t linger, though. He was motivated to figure out how to find Charlotte. First things first, though. He needed some coffee.

Ryan poured himself a cup of coffee, trying to figure out where to start looking for Charlotte. If she was traveling, she would need money. Credit card! He took his coffee into the office and logged into her credit card account. It hadn’t been used since Monday in Pittsburgh. He logged into her banking info and saw that she had cleared out her wedding savings account. She had been working so hard to save up as much money as she could for their wedding.

As Ryan perused, he saw that she hadn’t used her debit card or written any checks. She must be paying cash only, but that would run out eventually. Once it did, he would be able to track her down. It was just a matter of time. What else could he do to try to find her?

Ryan wondered to himself if Melanie could know more than she was saying. He thought about her text messages and his last two phone calls with her. It’s possible she knew more but would she tell him? He didn’t feel it was likely, especially since she believed he had cheated on Charlotte. He could try to explain the truth, but would she listen? It had been nearly a year since Randi had been to the apartment, so if that’s when Charlotte saw them, she and Melanie believed that he was cheating for nearly a year. He wished she would have just talked to him when this first happened!

Ryan’s stomach growled and grumbled.

He realized he hadn’t eaten anything since last night and it was nearly noon now. A walk would help him to be able to think more clearly about what he should do. He headed outside and started walking, thinking as he went. By the time he reached the burger place near their apartment, he decided that there was nothing he could do but wait for her cash to run out and track her down when she had to start using her card again. He had no clues, nothing to follow.

Ryan checked her accounts every four or five hours through the weekend. He couldn’t spend every moment waiting and wishing – he would go mad. Ryan worked on follow up from the meeting to help distract him from the present situation.

***

 

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