Here is the fourth chapter of Taxi Driver, in case you are behind or would like to reread the previous chapters again, here is everything Taxi Driver related.
I apologize for taking a little longer than usual to write this chapter, but I was able to write something that wasn’t part of the plan. I think it added a nice touch to the story.
Evan drove back home from visiting his father. He wipes away some of his tears, he was starting to feel bad for himself. He was keeping a secret from everyone, but he couldn’t come clean, at least not yet. He eventually grew the strength to get out of his car.
Evan unlocked the door, and hung up his jacket on a coat hanger in the hallway closet. He then walked into the kitchen, where he saw Elizabeth drinking a cup of tea.
“Hey, how’s your Dad?” Elizabeth asked.
“He’s doing okay, I guess.” Evan said, washing an apple.
“Are you okay? You look like you’ve crying? Did you want to talk about it?” Elizabeth wondered as she hugged Evan.
“Not right now, honey. I”m going to take a shower. I’ll be back shortly. You can think of dinner, I was thinking of take out?” Evan said as he walked upstairs.
Elizabeth felt like something was wrong, but she couldn’t figure it out.
One Week Later…
Evan told his sisters that Saturday mornings are for him and their Dad. His sisters didn’t seem to mind.
As per usual, Evan always bought him and his Dad a cup of tea. Evan was intrigued to find out more of his Dad’s stories. He really enjoyed spending time with him.
“Hey, son! I’ve missed you.” Theodore expressed.
“Yes, me, too. How are you feeling?” Evan questioned.
“Same old, Evan. Now let’s start reading. Stephen or Deryck?” Theodore demanded.
Evan pondered, as he noticed that Theodore hung up his grandchildren’s art work on the walls.
“Perhaps Deryck.” Evan said as he was grabbing the journal from the night stand.
“April 16th, 2004
I had picked up this teenager, who seemed like something was bothering him. But I couldn’t place my finger on it. I figured he was about my age, or perhaps younger, couldn’t quite tell. I tried talking to him, but he kept on shrugging it off. I picked him up from his house, and he was going to a friend’s house. He didn’t say much to me.”
Evan finished reading the journal entry, but he had a question.
“So, Dad, how does your power work? I don’t understand.”
“From what I have gathered, it takes some time reading people’s stories. I normally have to see them at least three times for me to read their problems, and learn what is happening. Although asking my clients questions can give me a general idea of what is going on. Now, son, we don’t have a lot of time left, keep on reading.” Theodore said, coughing aggressively.
Evan nodded, as he turned the page.
“May 12th, 2004
I saw him again, although this time he had told me that his name is Deryck, and he was in grade 12. So I realized that he was about two years younger than me. He seemed more engaging than the last time I had picked him up. He was running late to school, but that didn’t seem to bother him much. I can tell that he was happy that the school year was almost over. He didn’t bother to brush his long, shaggy hair. He seemed to be looking a bit fatigued from the last time I had saw him. He didn’t seem like he was interested in going to school. He had said that he needed to go to English class because he was going to get marked for attendance. I was hoping that I can see him at least one time to truly understand what is going on. Although I did have an idea of what was happening to him. He didn’t have enough money to cover his fare, but I told him not to worry about it. I really didn’t mind.”
Evan paused, thinking of what he could say next. Theodore looked over at him, and asked; “Everything okay?”
“Yeah, I was just thinking.” Evan said,
“About what?” Theodore wondered.
“I don’t even know where to start. Like how do you do it?” Evan asked.
“I am just able to read them once I know more about them. From there I try my best to figure out what would be best for them.” Theodore explained.
Evan continued reading the journal entries, as he finished drinking his tea.
“June 6th, 2004
I saw him for the third time today, and I finally knew what struggles he was going through. He sat down and buckled up, this time he had a serious look on his face. I knew what he had wanted to do before he had said anything. He wanted to rob a bank, since his dad lost his job and his mom didn’t have a lot of money. So he figured he would get the money by robbing a bank instead. I can tell he tried looking for various jobs, but no wanted to hire him. I can tell he was frustrated and hated everything that was going on in his life. I knew that he did drugs so he didn’t have to feel these emotions of not having a lot of money and the embarrassment of not having a job.
His friend would give him his money for drugs. He felt like he needed to rob this bank, in order to help others. I knew that it didn’t have to be this way. So I had to think fast, I decided to take him to an unemployment agency. He looked at me with confusion.
He realized that we weren’t going to the bank. In fact, he became confused that he never told me where he wanted to go. I decided that in order to help him, I had to tell him my secret power.
I had expressed that he was making a mistake. I later explained to him the consequences of his decisions and the lasting impacts it would have on his life. I wanted to help him out the only way I knew how. We talked about the drug use, and how he was hurting himself, which I’m sure his mom wouldn’t be happy with that. I recommended healthy ways to cope with his stress. I let him ride for free since I knew he didn’t have a lot of money.
I gave him a bit of money, and I knew he was going to use it for the best. I gave him my number in case he needed any more help with anything else. I hope he begins to making better choices for himself and for his family, too.”
Evan finished reading the journal, as he cleared his throat.
“You know, what you did for him and Alice was really nice.” Evan expressed as Theodore nodded in agreement.
“We still kept in touch over the years. We wrote to each other all the time.” Theodore said, handing the envelope that read Deryck on it.
Evan began to open the envelope.
“September 25, 2017
I just want to thank you for you basically saving my life, and made me really want to make better choices for my life. I am about to celebrate my first anniversary of being a bank branch manager. I know it’s quite ironic because I almost robbed a bank.
But I am happy that our paths crossed, because if we haven’t, well I know my life would be a lot different, and I mean for the worst, obviously.
I am forever grateful for you and your family. I enjoy talking to you over the past years, and learning about your family. In fact, I have great news of mine, my wife and I are expecting a baby in February. We are really excited!
Because we waited until we were financially stable, I know that my baby is going to be well, so I know she doesn’t have to rob a bank in her teens.
Anyway, I just wanted to say thank you so much again.”
Evan stopped, as he was putting the pieces to the puzzle together.
“Wait, how could I have missed this?! Elizabeth was born in February, and her Dad is a bank branch manager. This is her Dad?” Evan asked.
“Why don’t you finish reading the letter, son?” Theodore suggested.
Evan picked up the letter, and continued reading.
“We were thinking of naming her Elizabeth Grace. I would love for you meet her when she arrives. I can already tell that she is going to be in great hands. My wife, Samantha and I have discussed that we would love to have you and Amelia as her Godparents.
We can tell that you two are amazing with Sarah and Evan. Think it over, and get back to us.
Deryck and Samantha”
Evan just sat there. He had no idea that his father in law was friends with his father.
“Your mom and I agreed to be her Godparents. You guys always got to hang out when you were babies. How else do you think you met each other? It was long before you were in the same swimming class, like you all thought it was.” Theodore confessed.
Evan sat there in a bit of shock, he had no idea.
“Two years later, they did move because he got promoted to go to another bank, so they ended up moving for a bit. Although because your mom and I had Olivia, they later moved back here. It was a perfect time since we later signed you up for swimming lessons, which is the story of how you two first met. I first met him when he was 17, and at that time I was 20 years old. I have been a taxi driver since I was 19 years old. We have remained friends for a bit, until we became family.” Theodore reflected.
“That is actually really beautiful, Dad. I enjoyed that story. I had no idea that Deryck felt that way.” Evan said.
“I forgot to tell you that shortly after he went to the unemployment office, he found a job and he stopped using cocaine. He worked at a grocery store and eventually he saved up enough so he went off to university to study finance. He eventually obtained his Masters of Business Administration. He invited me to all of his graduations. It’s like we were brothers.”
There was a moment of silence.
“Son, I am getting really tired, but you should come back again.” Theodore said as he was closing his eyes.
Evan took that as a cue to leave, and return another day.
“I’ll swing by on Tuesday, okay?” Evan whispered, as he was grabbing his coat.
He gave his Dad a kiss on the forehead, and he carefully returned the journal and envelopes back to the nightstand, before walking out of the room.