CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED and SEVENTY-ONE
“I know,” Alex said with a grin. “I’m a prodigy, too. Ciphers. My brother and I figured all kinds of things out.”
“Including mine?” Bernie asked.
“Including yours,” Alex said. “Listen.”
Bernie turned to look at her directly.
“Don’t overdo it,” Alex said. “We have people who can do everything you and I can do, just not combined. So, you want to tour Auschwitz, do it. You want to talk to our writer’s family? Do it. You want to stay in bed and eat chocolate? I’m fine with that.”
“And my Seth?” Bernie asked.
“I’ve known O’Malley for a long time,” Alex said. “I’m good at finding people, so I met him early in my career.”
Bernie gave her a look.
“You knew that I was at Fitzsimmons,” Bernie said.
“I did,” Alex said.
His head slowly nodding, Bernie seemed to relax.
“It’s been my experience that O’Malley does whatever he wants to do,” Alex said. “Period. You should take a cue from him.”
He gave her a slight nod.
“Easier said than done,” Bernie said.
“Let’s just promise to be honest with each other,” Alex said. “You tell me if you’re triggered and I’ll do the same. Most of my team has some form or another of trauma induced issues. We try to be honest about it.”
“Do you think I’ll hold you back?” Bernie asked.
“Not in the least,” Alex said with a grin. She nodded to Arthur “Raz” Rasmussen as he came into the room. “I’m going to leave you with my partner.”
“Bernie!” Raz said. “They told me you were here. I didn’t believe them. Why didn’t you tell me you were coming?”
Alex smiled and left them to chat. She went through a hallway where Seth was hovering.
“Should we leave?” Seth asked.
“No,” Alex said. “I’m sorry about my father.”
“I’m sorry about mine,” Seth said.
“Did you know that they had issues?” Alex asked.
“They sniped at each other when Katy and Paddie had their little piano recital,” Seth said. “I just thought it was cantankerousness.”
“Something neither one lacks,” Alex said.
“Don’t worry,” Alex said. “We’re going to head to the mine tomorrow. It’s likely to be in and out. Done.”
“We’ll see,” Seth said. He opened his mouth to say something but then shook his head. “Do you think they have history?”
“They have history,” Alex said. “Bernie was the CIA part of a few deals my father’s intelligence team worked.”
“Didn’t end well?” Seth asked.
“Everything went off without a hitch,” Alex said. “They just don’t like each other. Trust each other.”
“Let’s just watch out for each other,” Alex said. “He has PTS. I do. Some of my team does. This is supposed to be a fun, non-dangerous trip. So let’s just have fun.”
“Will do,” Seth said with a smile.
“Now, Leena’s dying to know what the Queen of England is like,” Alex said.
She nodded to where Leena was waiting for them to finish.
“You need anything,” Alex said, “you let me know.”
“Same for you,” Seth said.
“Done,” Alex said.
She wandered off toward the kitchen. Seth looked into the living room. The team has slowly filtered back into the room. Raz and Bernie were having a rousing conversation that everyone was soon involved in.
“Dinner?” Benjamin asked Seth.
“You know, I’d love some coffee,” Seth said. “American. Not espresso.”
“Let me get you some,” Benjamin said.
Seth followed Ben into the kitchen.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
This work, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.