In the midst of Sandy Jamison’s plan to attend college in the big city of Charlotte, NC after graduation from high school and “never return here, ever again.” appears 22-year-old Junior Taylor.
Sandy’s mind is on her plans as she yearns to find her father, someone who once loved her and made her feel secure and wanted. Maybe he could explain how the divorce happened. There was no fighting, no announcement made to Sandy who suddenly lost a whole group of relatives and was “rushed off to this small, nothing town that doesn’t even have a market, a Walgreens or a fast-food joint.” Her mother only said, “I have a new job.”
Sandy marries Edmond Robert McWicker, “a local boy”, who went to Charlotte during her four years of college to pursue her. His family has been the only employer within 500 miles for three generations, so they offer Sandy a life set apart by wealth and privilege. Their marriage is pleasant, an easy one, and predictable. Edmond also offers Sandy protection from her mother who is a mere 3 miles away with several layers of class between them.
One lazy Sunday afternoon while her own children are with their other grandmother at the mansion, Sand wonders, “Whatever happened to Junior?” she asks her mother. I think he was in love with you,” her mother laughs, expressing the cackle that always went up Sandy’s spine. “He wrote you letters, even called, but he was the salesman type-a girl in every town. He wasn’t for you.”
Sandy has everything she could ever want-the love of a decent man, a supportive family and financial security-what else will she do besides yell at her mother?