CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED and TWENTY-FOUR
“Charlie won’t tolerate it,” Jill said. “If you fight, you can’t play. If you can’t get along, you go home. His rules. So far, it’s worked out great because no one wants to go home.
Jacob nodded. They fell silent as Jill made him a sandwich. She set out some peeled carrots for him to eat while she finished the sandwich.
“Delphie was due for a meltdown,” Jacob said. “Mom and Dad always grounded her. Kept her on an even keel. Since Dad’s sick, it was only a matter of time. Any idea what sparked it?”
“She wanted to get some things done in the backyard,” Jill said.
“Ah,” Jacob said. “I wonder why she didn’t talk to me.”
“She said that you were too busy with work to deal with an old woman’s issues,” Jill said.
“Really,” Jacob said as a statement. “That’s worse than I thought. She was… pretty upset?”
“What happened?” Jacob asked.
“Tanesha found her crying in the hallway in the basement. Tanesha called her parents, who came right over,” Jill said. “I mean, like, they were here in fifteen minutes or something. You know how Delphie helped Yvonne when she was trapped. I guess, Rodney told someone that she’d saved his life when he was in prison. They told me that they would show up for Delphie anytime, anywhere.”
“Wow,” Jacob said.
“I know,” Jill said. “Yvonne took Delphie into the dining room. She fed Delphie tea and those breakfast cookies she likes until Delphie was coherent. Delphie had given Charlie this crazy map.”
“I’ve seen those,” Jacob said.
“I bet,” Jill said. “Anyway, Yvonne took Delphie. Rodney got Charlie to tell him what he remembered of what she wanted. Rodney drew it up and they got started with what they could do.”
“I saw some of the Lipson guys out there,” Jacob said. “Jeraine’s out there too.”
“Rodney thinks he’s lazy,” Jill said.
“Compared to Rodney, everyone is lazy,” Jacob said.
Jacob bit into his sandwich. He smiled at her. She’d made the sandwich exactly the way he liked it. She nodded in acknowledgement.
“Are you heading back to Lipson?” Jill asked.
His mouth full, Jacob shook his head. He gestured to the backyard.
“You’re going to help out back?” Jill asked.
“I think so?” Jacob said with a shrug. “I thought maybe I could figure out what’s going on and then look for Delphie.”
“That’s a good idea,” Jill said. “She’s asked me when you’ll be home three times, maybe four. She keeps saying that you and she made this house and…”
“She doesn’t want to make me mad,” Jacob said with a smile.
He swallowed down a glass of water that she’d set out for him.
“That’s what she always says,” Jacob said. “Do you know where she is now?”
“With Val,” Jill said. She looked at her watch. “I think they are feeding the little kids.”
Jacob nodded. He moved away and then swept her into his arms. He kissed her hard. She giggled.
“What do I owe this pleasure?” she asked.
“Just love you,” Jacob said. “You’ve given so much in the last few days, flexed with school, and the kids, and the ever growing population of people.”
He kissed her again.
“It’s not easy,” Jacob said. “I appreciate it. Makes me love you even more.”
She smiled and kissed him. He let her go and sped out of the loft to look for Delphie.
She smiled at his back. When the door closed, she went to check on Katy and get Paddie ready for his doctor’s appointment.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
This work, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.