Chapter 1

His flight was canceled and the car rental at the small airport in Charleston, West Virginia had rented out the few cars equipped to safely drive in a snowstorm. What else could go wrong?

Anthony Colbert Jones, or Colby to his friends and family, had been driving for the past five hours, cramped in a white subcompact with a radio that got more static than music.

He released a deep breath, relieved to finally be able to pick up speed after crawling past two cars and a pickup truck that looked like bumper cars at the fair. “Good thing that’s not you in the snow,” he told the small car. “A few hours in this storm and the wrecker would think you were just a bump in the road or maybe a ski mogul,” he said, chuckling as he pushed the radio’s buttons again, looking for a country western station.

He finally gave up and pushed the off button. Silence surrounded him, but it was a welcomed relief. “Bessie,” he told the car, “I’m proud of you for making it through this storm. I couldn’t have made it without you.” He chuckled, figuring it was like his mother used to tell him. “It’s always better to laugh when things don’t go your way than to get upset since upset won’t change anything.”

He reached up to wipe at the fogged window, thankful that the windshield wipers had managed to keep the accumulating snow off the glass. Now that he could see better, his thoughts returned to his situation. His mother was right. There was nothing he could do to change the speed of the traffic on the snow-slick roads, but at this rate, there was no doubt that he’d be late to his best friend’s wedding rehearsal. He sobered quickly at the thought of being the reason for any delays, slapping his palm on the steering wheel when the crawl came to a dead stop.

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