I felt Alex speed up suddenly beneath me, and I tightened my grip around his neck to avoid falling off. "Why'd you speed up?" I queried, tucking my head into his shoulder slightly so that the wind didn't hit me so hard.
"The bus stopped. The bus never stops." He explained, going that little bit faster.
The bus... stopped. Huh? "What do you mean? You heard it?" I strained my ears, searching the area around us for the sound of that familiar rumbling engine. There was nothing but the occasional car, but I guess I wouldn't hear it, anyway, if what Alex said was true. But the bus can't stop...
"No..." I paused, again, trying to listen. Nothing. "Should I have?"
He put on another burst of speed. "I guess not. We're not that far away, though." Ah, but how far away classes as far away? Australia is far away. Or... China. Y'know, whatever is on the other side of the world to wherever we are now.
"How long d'ya think it'll take for us to get there, then?" I asked, curious as to how far away not far away is.
"Couple of minutes. We're only a few miles away." There we go. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if the bus was in China by now. It's magic.
We ran in silence for a little while, until Alex slowed to a halt outside a motel. The bus was sitting at the side of the road, in quite a sorry state. I've seen it worse, of course, but it wasn't exactly usable. The front was a bit mashed in.
I slipped down off his back and walked towards it, inspecting the damage. "Ooh, you're right. It did stop." It was smoking a little, and the left tire at the front was flat. I turned back to look at Alex, who hadn't said anything yet. "What d'you think happened to it?"
He just shrugged, "No idea."
"Hmm." I took one last glance at the bright red bus. "Oh well. It looks like everyone is inside." I said, motioning towards the motel with a tilt of my head. I could see Beth, the driver, on a payphone by the door.
"Another night with a real bed?" Alex asked hopefully, his face lighting up momentarily beneath his black hood.
I laughed lightly. "We'll have to see, eh? C'mon." I turned to walk towards the entrance, Alex following behind me.
It's good to be back with the bus... even if it's a tad broken.
I pushed on the glass and sighed with relief as the cool draft from the air conditioner wafted over me. I hadn't realised just how hot it was outside.
As we walked in, Alex shrugging the thick hood off as he welcomed the dim light within, Beth hung up the phone and sat down on a sofa irritably.
"What happened with the bus?" I asked, walking over to her. She looked up at the two of us, her eyes widening in shock at the sight of her favouritest vampire people in the whole wide world! Yeah. Sarcasm.
"Crashed." She muttered, pulling a brick of a mobile phone out of her pocket and punching at the buttons angrily. Yeah... there's no service here.
"How come?" I sat down on an armchair close to her, perched on the edge so I could lean closer. Alex sat near by, settling into one of the large sofas. The slight smile dancing about his lips told me he was happy to be in somewhere cold and moderately dark.
Beth sighed and pocketed her mobile. Yeah, I know you were trying to avoid me by making it look like you were busy. Didn't work, sorry. "I shut my eyes for one minutes. It was an accident. No one got hurt." She spoke in clipped phrases, her jaw taut with anger. I had a feeling she was angry at herself, though.
Then she suddenly buried her head in her hands, shoulders shaking with tears. God, how awkward is it trying to comfort someone you hardly know? I placed a hand on her shoulder to show her I was there.
I don't think it helped.