Meet Dr. Krueger (4)

Natalie:  You wonder about what?

Steve:  There were no mitigating circumstances. It was raining; the road wasn't icy; the street had plenty of light. I really wonder if the driver was aiming for the right person!

Natalie:  (She is shocked) Do you mean the driver might have meant to hit one of us instead of Cy?

Steve:  Well, think about it, Natalie. Cy pushed both of us out of the way. The driver wasn't aiming for him. It was trying to run down one of us. I think the wrong person is lying in that hospital bed.

Natalie:  One of us? But why?

Steve:  I don't know, but I sure am going to find out! Let's stop dwelling on this for right now. Tell me about yourself, Natalie.

Natalie:  About me? (she hesitates.) There really isn't much to say; my parents died when I was 14 and I was sent to live with my aunt and uncle. They had a daughter 3 years older than I. She was so beautiful and I wanted to be exactly like her. We really only knew each other for a year, then she went off to college, moved to a different city and she stopped communicating. My aunt and uncle were heartbroken.

Steve:  Did you ever find out why she stopped writing or calling?

Natalie:  Not exactly. One of my roommates in college had a brother who had gone to the same school. He said my cousin loved to change her name. One week she wanted to be called, "Dawn." And the next week everyone was supposed to call her, "Melinda." He said she was also, Suzanne Jeni, Rebecca and Kristi.

Steve:  Why do you think she kept changing her name?

Natalie:  When he asked her that question, she laughed and said she was considering what name to use for her movie career.

Steve:  A movie career?

Natalie:  Evidently she was studying theater arts in college before she dropped out. My aunt and uncle thought she might have gone to New York or California to become a professional actress.

Steve:  Did he say if she was any good as an actress?

Natalie:  Yes, he said she was fantastic; and with her good looks… My aunt and uncle really sacrificed a lot financially to send her to that school and then she quit three weeks before graduation. It just didn't make sense. But then Susan was always an egocentric person.

Steve:  O.K., enough about your cousin. Now tell me about Natalie.

Natalie:  (blushing) I don't know what to say; I'm not used to talking about myself. What do you want to know?

Steve:  What about college; where did you go? What did you study?

Natalie:  After I saw how Susan had hurt my aunt and uncle, I really wanted to make them proud of me. I studied a lot; hardly ever went on a date and I was able to get a scholarship to a school of my choosing. I decided to go college in Madison so I wouldn't be too far away from them.

Steve:  That's very admirable; where do they live?

Natalie:  My aunt died two years ago; my uncle lives in Beloit. I tried to talk him into living with Ken and me, but he has lived there all his life and doesn't want to move. He and his "cronies" as he likes to call them play cards, go fishing, bowling, and play golf together. So he's busy and happy.

Steve:  That's really important. Do you get to see him very often?

Natalie:  Not as often as I'd like, but I fly there in June for his birthday and he flies California for the Christmas holidays. It's a little difficult for him to visit.
Author: Torsten Daerr