Child in a Manger: Chapter 6
Allison drops off Joy with the new foster family.
She mopes around the empty house for a bit, then gets a message from the Sheriff’s office that there have been all kinds of toys and clothes and things left for The Child in the Manger.
That’s so sweet. But…
So many times Allison had resented her community’s outpouring of support for the less fortunate at Christmas because those efforts assumed that people weren’t hungry, lonely or suffering any other time of the year.
Really, Allison? Really?
This is a bit of a change from Allison’s usual martyr complex. Now it’s just a good old superiority complex.
I mean, everything else aside, how does Allison know that people aren’t giving to charities at non-Christmas times of the year? She’s a family case worker, not is charge of all charities in town…or everywhere else.
And how much is she giving outpourings of support for every cause ever…all the time?
Regardless, who the hell is she to pass judgment on everyone in town? And “so many times.”
But it’s totally different when the support is for Allison’s soon-to-be, because who are we kidding, daughter.
Tonight, though, she sensed her friends’ compassion as they reached out to Joy, just as she and Brock had. She wished Joy could grow up in Destiny and have the opportunity to be enveloped in such warmth.
Yep, it’s warmth when it’s extended to the baby you love. It’s just—I don’t know what Allison thinks it is, an annual hypocritical assuaging of guilt?—when it’s for others “less fortunate.”
But the really important thing about this turn of events is that it gives Allison a chance to spruce herself up for Brock!
Not that I blame her. I would probably do the same thing, in her shoes.
Within minutes of hanging up [with David, with whom she turned down a last-minute invitation to Christmas dinner] she stood before the mirror, applying eyeliner and mascara that she usually skipped…
Okay, I get skipping eyeliner on working days, because that’s a pain in the ass. But Allison is a blonde. For natural blondes and redheads, skipping mascara makes you disappear.
Trust me, I know.
Brock, of course, is at the police station, still investigating. Does the poor fellow ever get to sleep?
He sees Allison come in, all fancified, and has thoughts that are refreshingly complicated.
He couldn’t take his eyes off her, but he couldn’t decide if it was because he preferred this glamorous version of her or if he couldn’t get over how she’d messed up a good thing.
And just like when the foster mother called to take Joy, spoiling the moment, this moment is spoiled when Brock finally gets a call—a lead in the case! The workers in some shitty hotel outside town found a baby car seat in a room.
Brock gets ready to go out and take a look, and Allison wants to keep hanging out with him, so…
The idea that struck her was like a gift from God—so simple, yet ingenious.
Uh-oh. I remember the last time one of our RTC characters hatched a scheme “so clear and complete that he believed it was from God Himself.”
I really hope Allison’s God doesn’t dessicate Destiny as a way to flush out (har!) Joy’s mother.
But no, the idea is just to convince Brock that they should “team up” to find the mother.
And by “team up,” I figure Allison just means she tags along for the ride.
Beats drying up a city’s water supply, at least.