“I know of the sorrow you’ve faced recently,” she says, “so I shall warn you that not every story to be told is a happy one.  I hope I don’t say anything to add to your sadness.”  Alice takes a breath.

    “I’m telling the next two stories out of order, but I’m sure you won’t mind.  Now, we travel to Paraguay where we find Hogan Carlos Fox, having finished a twelve-hour overnight shift, sitting at a bus stop, sharing his sub sandwich with a homeless man.  In fact, Hogan is the kind of person that sees everyone as his friend.  It is while waiting on the bus that Hogan learns this individual was once a successful lawyer with a passion to become an animator.  However, the man’s wife was vehemently against this and forced him to give up his dream.  Unfortunately, illegal activity from one of his associates put this man, Alberto, out of work, which caused the wife to take the children and forsake him.  Hogan takes it upon himself to help this friend pull himself up, starting with a ride on the bus.

    “The bus arrives and the duo step on, only to have the driver scold them and tell them to get off.  Hogan is offended at her behavior but decides to wait with Alberto for the next bus to arrive.  This is when he realizes why the woman driving was so appalled.  Laughing, the school bus driver says, ‘I was waiting for you to notice, baby.  It’s okay.’  As she drives off, Alberto adds, ‘I was wondering why we were getting on a school bus.  I figured you knew what you were doing.’  With a huge smile on his face, Hogan says to his friend what he said to the driver, having understood his blunder, ‘Oh, man!  I am such an idiot!’

    “There is much laughter heard as these men wait for the correct ride to arrive, and when it does, the seating goes much more smoothly.  However, this is for naught as Hogan, Alberto, three other civilians and the driver are the only decent human beings along for the ride.  The rest of the passengers are a gang of thugs, and they have decided to have some fun.  Risking a crash, one of the pigs rips the driver out of the seat and quickly takes his place.  This is where the nightmare begins.”

    Alice looks around to see the wide eyes staring at her.  She can’t help but laugh to herself a tad before she continues.  “The other three passengers are an elderly lady, a young mother and her five-year-old son.  With their safety in mind, Hogan vigilantly watches for an opportunity to strike.  All the same, Hogan can’t help mutter how the sub he just ate might be worth the doom he’s about to endure.  Though hesitant, Alberto is surprised to find himself agreeing with this menu assessment.  Oddly enough, the new driver, apparently the leader, calls Hogan to the front and offers him a choice; he can either start harassing the civilians as his initiation into the gang, or he can say goodbye as he’s thrown out off the bus.  Looking at the people he’s about to sacrifice himself for, he sees his homeless friend and gets an idea.

    “Walking over and saying a few taunting lines, Fox starts to mock Alberto over embarrassing things that happened between them as kids.  Of course, though Alberto is saddened that he is the first victim, he’s also confused at why this stranger is talking as if they’ve always grown up together.  That’s when the witty lawyer catches on, and that’s when the soap opera begins, with the two doing their best to put on a show of brothers fighting.  Unfortunately, no one buys it, not even the five-year-old.”

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