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The old trolleybus was in no hurry to go anywhere. The hot sun warmed his flaky sides. And he slowly, wearily rolled along the city streets. The passengers, exhausted by the heat, were also in no hurry.

Sophia left her car in the parking lot near the hotel and went to travel around the city. She always did that in her spare time. She left the car, got into a trolleybus or tram and rode around the city, where she came on a business trip.

Not far from one of the stops, the trolley bus sighed heavily and stopped. The driver announced into a squeaky microphone: “The trolleybus does not go any further. Spoiled."

The passengers cheered up. They began to blame the officials, the heat, fresh and chronic sores. And Sophia went to the driver to ask how to get out of an unfamiliar street.

– I’m here for the first time. Tell me please…

– Sofia?!

– Dmitry?!

From a once handsome, stately guy, Dmitry turned into a dense man. The hair is a little gray. The eyes became cold.

Both felt uncomfortable.

– Are you still mad at me? Dmitry broke the silence.

– I didn’t refuse the wedding in a few days. Although … it’s good that it happened.

— ???

— No wonder they say: everything that is done is for the better. But then it hurt. I wanted to sink through the earth from shame and human gossip.

“Life is not stroking my head. Maybe for you. One daughter – and that disabled person. The wife works at home. Sews when possible. And I suffer. After working in the garage, I twist the nuts on other people’s cars. You do look okay. You probably have a good life.

– Everything is there for happiness: a wonderful family, a good job …

Sofia wanted to annoy Dmitry. As he once told her…

… Dmitry and Sophia of the village were separated by a pond. People often, instead of the name of the village, said: "We must go to the other side of the pond" or "I took my wife from the other side of the pond."

"Beautiful couple," they said on both sides of the pond.

– Dmitry is going to enter the institute. Follows Sofia.

– Reaching … for other people’s skirts. They say he walks in the district center. Seen from some…

– Certainly! Seen! You can no longer exchange words with anyone. How long has he been working in the district center? Third year, I think. Has acquaintances…

… There is very little left before the wedding. The hostesses excelled at smoked, baked, boiled … The hosts made huts. One day, a car stopped near a village store. An unfamiliar woman got out of the car. Several local gossips were sitting on the bench, and I asked them the same thing:

Does Dmitry Ivanishin live here?

“Here," the women nodded in unison. – And who will you be to him?

– Future mother-in-law.

The gossipers’ eyes widened like saucers.

– Maybe you are confusing, you are looking for the wrong Dmitry. Ours will soon have another mother-in-law. Wedding on the nose.

“Lida, get out of the car,” the stranger shouted.

A pregnant girl barely got out of the Zhiguli.

– Here! The eighth month of Dima’s child is. And he turned his head around.

– No, Dmitry has been dating Sofia since high school.

“Is this Sophia also pregnant?”

– Not! the women answered in unison.

“Well, that’s good,” the stranger sighed with relief. – The girl will find another guy. Get in the car, Linda. Let’s go meet the couple. Where is their house?

The news quickly spread through both villages. Sophia and her family did not believe.

“Roman, take a motorcycle and go to the Ivanishins,” Sofya’s mother urged her husband. “Maybe someone messed up something. Or started a rumor.

Someone else’s car was parked in the Ivanishins’ yard. And from behind the neighbor’s fences, curious eyes peeked out.

Roman entered the house. I saw an unfamiliar man, woman and pregnant girl. Understood: no one messed up. However, he asked:

Dimitri, is this true?

– Uncle Roman, there will be no wedding. Tell Sofia…

Roman turned and walked away.

“Your daughter will still find…” the unfamiliar woman shouted after her.

… The owners were dismantling unfinished huts. Mistresses counted other people’s losses. In the village, Sophia was looked at with pity and whispered behind her back. Dmitry with pregnant Lida and her parents went to the city.

The sky shook the ripe stars into the hot palms of summer. The evening smelled of cut grass. Sophia was sitting on the shore of the pond – today should be her wedding. Today she must be the happiest person on earth. Today she is in unbearable pain…

As if some invisible force took the girl by the hand and led her to the water. The cold touched my feet and my soul.

– Daughter! – the cry of Sophia’s father aroused the quiet evening and the whole world.

Roman jumped into the water in his slippers.

— What did you think? What?..

– Dad!

– The heart felt. Led for you. Don’t you dare take sin upon your soul. Dimitri doesn’t deserve this. He went to other hands – the Lord is with him.

Don’t tell your mom anything…

Dmitry’s child was born sick. Lida and her daughter often ended up in the hospital. In the end, both families chipped in and bought Dima and Lida an apartment in one of the regional centers, where there is a necessary clinic. They were afraid to give birth to a second child …

…Sofia after graduation went to work in a travel agency. There she met her fate – Oleg. Now they have their own travel business. Two sons. Happiness and prosperity in the family …

Sophia, did you come here for a long time?

– For two days.

“So, maybe we… later met somewhere. Remembering the old…

– What for? The old is in the past.

“There is an inn near here. We can go now … And the trolley bus …

– … does not go further. Forced stop. As in life. Come on, Dmitry.

– Turn left. There are buses and trolleybus number…

– Thanks. May you be lucky!

Sophia smiled, waved her hand like a girl, jumped off the footboard of the trolleybus and … turned right.

Dimitri looked after his loss with annoyance.

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