CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED and FIFTY-SEVEN
“This way,” Delphie said.
She made the little cackle that used to make him laugh when he was a little boy. He managed to stay glum through one cackle, but the second one had him giggling like a five year old. She smiled at him. They walked past the pool down a hall. Dephie gestured to a door.
“That’s where Dale’s room is,” Delphie said with a nod. “It’s really nice.”
“He showed it to me and Charlie,” Nash nodded. “It was really nice of Maresol to make it.”
“O’Malley wouldn’t have it any other way,” Delphie said.
“Oh?” Nash asked. “He said it was all Maresol.”
“Of course he did,” Delphie said. “But you know how things really are, don’t you Nash?”
The words hit him like a brick wall. He stopped walking.
Truth was that he did know how things really were. He always knew the truth. He could pick it out of the air.
But lately …
“Can you get the door?” Delphie asked.
He had to jog to catch up with her. He opened the glass door and followed her into a kind of greenhouse garden. It wasn’t very big, but the space was used efficiently. Along one wall, there were vegetables — tomatoes and other summer foods. Some plants he recognized and some he didn’t. There were orange, lemon, and lime trees scattered around. The citrus trees were all in bloom.
“Who’s the gardener?” Nash asked.
“Me,” Delphie said with a grin. “And Bernie. Maresol helped me set this up. Bernie hadn’t had a garden in almost forty years. We tend it together. Now that you know about it, I’m sure you can take a shift.”
“It sounds like …”
“Bees,” Delphie said. “Yes, they have access to the plants in here. There’s a hive in the wall over there.”
“Does it make good honey?” Nash asked.
“Really good,” Delphie said with a nod.
“Are there pot plants?” Nash asked.
“In the back,” Delphie said. “I don’t use it, but Bernie finds it helpful for his aches and pains.”
“O’Malley?” Nash asked.
“He hates the stuff,” Delphie said.
“That’s good because he’s an addict,” Nash said.
Nash knew all about addiction and addicts from the classes and groups he and Noelle went to because both of their parents were addicts. Delphie gave Nash a mild look.
“Let’s sit over here,” Delphie said.
She gestured to a couple of chaise loungers that looked out onto the trees that separated O’Malley’s yard from his neighbors. For the first time, Nash noticed the garden built around the statue on the side yard. He realized that it was a memorial garden to both of Seth’s brothers.
“And his mother,” Delphie said, finishing his though.
“O’Malley is a nicer than I would have ever given him credit,” Nash said. “Sweeter.
Delphie nodded. They sat in silence for a minute.
“I can hear something …” Nash said.
“Fish,” Delphie said. “The vegetables are a kind of aquaponic. There is a fish tank with Tilapia. They live in a big tank at the end. Their water fertilizes the plants.
“Wow,” Nash said.
“It’s very high tech,” Delphie said. “And also something done thousands of years ago.”
“Really?” Nash asked.
“Really,” Delphie said.
“How’s your heart doing?” Nash asked.
“I’m well,” Delphie said.
“Any word about those fairy queens?” Nash asked.
Delphie just looked at him.
“That’s not really why we’re here, is it?” Delphie asked.
Denver Cereal continues on Monday…
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