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.”“But the weird thing is the reason Mother Crone gave her for having put the compulsion on me in the first place.Apparently, she had some kind of premonition that if she didn’t keep me close to the court, something bad was going to happen to me.”“What kind of something bad?” I asked, already worrying.He shrugged.“She didn’t know.”“And you’re not worried?”“Of course I’m worried.Mother Crone’s a seer.But what can I do? If she doesn’t know, and there’s no one else I can ask.”“Do we know that for sure? Maybe Bones or Cassie could help you.”“I don’t know that Bones likes me all that much.”“Oh, pooh.It’s your brother that drives him crazy.You he likes.”Geordie smiled—I’ve pretty much always been able to jolly him out of a mood, though during the fallout from the Tanya breakup it was a tough sell.He had the rest of my sandwich and washed it down with some more coffee before turning to me.“You know about fairies,” he said.“Have you ever heard of an enmity between the ones that are native to North America and the ones that immigrated here?”“Not really.But Bramley would.He should be back some time this afternoon.”“Can’t—I’ve got this gig, remember?”“Right.”“So, do you want to come? I know it’s short notice, but I thought it might be fun.”I thought about sitting here in the greenhouse for the rest of the day, all on my own unless I sought out Goon or Bramley for company.“I’d love to get out,” I said.“If it’s not too much of a bother.”He just rolled his eyes at me.“Okay, okay,” I said.“I get the message.Yes, I’d love to come.When do we need to leave?”He glanced at his watch.“Now?”“Do I need to bring anything?”“Well, depending on how we feel, we might want to stay overnight in the hotel.They’ll comp us a room.”“Let me grab a few things.”I started to wheel away—I can get around now on my own two legs, but it’s way slower and my balance still isn’t great.“It’ll go quicker if you do the packing,” I added.He followed me into my room and got my bag from the closet while I wheeled over to the dresser and studied the clothes in the drawers.“Have you talked to Christy about this fairy business?” I asked as I tossed a few things onto the bed.He shook his head.“I meant to when I was over at his place last night, but then we got off on this whole other tangent of me making a CD to get the money to put down some roots.You know, actually get my own place, that kind of thing.”I paused on my way to the bathroom to look back at him.I could have told him he was welcome to keep living in my old apartment for as long as he wanted, but the idea of him actually making a commitment to record a CD—and all that would entail—took me too much by surprise.“So, how do you feel about that?” I asked.He shrugged.“I’m not saying no.” He laughed and added before I could comment, “And yeah, I know.That is new.But I have to do something with my life.I look at Christy and Saskia and.I’m not exactly jealous.But I know I’d like that kind of stability in my life.I think I need it.”“Wow.”“I know.Took awhile, but maybe I’m finally growing up.”We’d both had troubled childhoods—it was part of what drew us together all those years ago when we first met, working part-time at the post office.We didn’t have real families of our own, so we had to make a new one for ourselves.He’d reconciled with Christy since then, and I was now working on doing the same with my sister Raylene.“We had to grow up too quickly,” I told him, “so I think we were allowed to indulge ourselves with late childhoods.And really, whose business is it what we do with our lives?”That sounded defensive, and I guess I was talking as much about myself as him, but he just nodded.“I’d be doing it for myself,” he said.“Because I want to.”“Then it’s a good thing.Let me know if I can help.”He gave me a funny look, then walked over to the bed and started stowing the clothes I’d put there into my bag.“Are you really going to need all of this?” he asked.I was in the bathroom now, getting my toiletries together.“Probably not,” I called back.“But it’s been forever since I’ve been on a road trip.Wait until I raid the kitchen.”“They have food at the hotel,” Geordie said.“Ah, but we need snacks for the drive.”It was another fifteen minutes before we were finally pulling out of Bramley’s lane in Christy’s old station wagon, which Geordie used far more often than Christy ever seemed to.My wheelchair was in the back.My bag was on the rear seat along with Geordie’s fiddle and his small knapsack.The food I’d raided from the kitchen was in a plastic bag on the bench seat between us.When I opened it, I found that Goon had slipped in sandwiches while he was helping me pack the food.Oh, and sensible man that he was, a couple bottles of water, too.I decided to save them for later and went straight to the road food.“Tortilla chip?” I asked and offered Geordie the bag.He laughed.“We’re not even into the burbs yet.”“We have to do the best we can,” I informed him.“It’s not far to Sweetwater, so it’ll be a short road trip and we’ve got a lot of food here.”He glanced at the bag of food and shook his head.“You sure you’re not part chipmunk?” he asked.“Because I’ve brought this stash of food along?”“Why else?”“Well, maybe you thought my face was getting fat—though,” I added as the thought came to me, “if I was an animal person, that’s probably exactly what I’d be.Or maybe a mouse.Or a mosquito.”“As opposed to?”“Oh, you know.The more Romantic kinds of animal people, like a deer or a wolf or an owl.”“Chipmunks are cute.”I nodded.“But they don’t get any respect.And they’re liable to get eaten by the wolves and owls [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]