CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED and FIFTY-THREE
Tuesday afternoon —4:15 p.m.
Sitting in the tile lined, cold, hallway, Jill looked up at the clock and then at her advisor’s door. Her advisor was late.
Jill sighed. She’d felt out of sorts and spacy all day. She had to check everything at least twice.
Katy was at school. The boys were at school. Jacob was …
Her phone “dinged” to indicate she had a text. Yvonne had been sending out mass texts of photos of Rodney and his new project. Jill smiled at an image of Rodney and Sam standing inside a Roll-Off dumpster. They were up to their elbows in the destruction of the day — plaster, trash, old clothing, appliances, and what Jacob called “unusable construction crap.” The men were filthy and looked incredibly happy.
Glancing at the clock again, she slipped the phone into her purse.
A thought struck her out of the blue.
Her pulse quickened.
What if she were pregnant?
She loved kids, but the boys were such a handful. Katy was at such a precarious age. Half of the time, she was just a little girl. The other half, she was more Titan than anything else. Jill was pretty sure that Katy would just be an adult if Jill would let her — which she would not. The children she had right now needed as much as she could give.
Of course, she would have the child, but the pressure of having another child — how could they handle that? And, Jacob was just taking his “gap” year — which was turning into him going around with his dad and starting businesses for other people.
Another child would just be …
She’d had her period last week. There was no way she was pregnant. Plus, she was on birth control.
Why was she so spacy today?
The door opened. A red faced, weeping woman rushed out of the office. Jill’s heart went out to the poor woman. When she caught the woman’s face, Jill realized that she knew her from those big military parties at Katy’s best friend Paddie’s house.
“Jill?” her advisor asked. “You can come on in.”
Jill picked up her purse and her school satchel. The advisor stepped back. Jill shuffled sideways to get into the small office. Her advisor was a smallish woman with blonde-grey hair up in an easy knot. She wore what Tanesha called “the middle income uniform” — black boots, a straight skirt, some kind of plain shirt with a lovely floral silk scarf.
“I’m sorry about that,” her advisor said. “Her husband is in the military. He was just killed in Iraq. She’s not sure she’ll be able to stay in school. It’s so sad because school has really been the thing that has carried her through her husband’s deployment. Now, she’ll have to give it up.”
As her advisor slid into her chair at her desk, Jill’s heart clenched for the poor woman.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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