CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED-TEN
“I’m just being with you,” Nash said. “You know, like heroin.”
Charlie laughed and put his arm over Nash’s shoulders.
“Did it work?” Nash asked.
Charlie looked at Nash. He grabbed Nash’s head and kissed his forehead.
“Not really,” Charlie said. “But somehow, I feel less alone. And that’s a very good thing.”
“There you are!” Tink’s voice came from around the wall. “We’ve been looking everywhere.”
Noelle and Teddy came around the corner just after Tink.
“Seth is here,” Tink said. “He wants to take you out this afternoon.”
Charlie shot Nash a look that would curdle milk.
“I didn’t know,” Nash said raising his hands. “I’ve been sitting here with you.”
“Come on,” Tink said.
Tink held out her hands, and Charlie let her help pull him up. Tink held him tight. Nash scrambled up after him.
“I’m so sorry about your dad,” Tink said. She scanned his face. “You look like you want to use.”
“I did,” Charlie said. He nodded to Nash. “I think I’m okay now.”
“You’d better get to the office!” Noelle said.
Charlie nodded and started toward the office. The other children followed him close behind. When they arrived at the office, they saw Sissy standing next to Seth. Everyone rushed to Sissy. Seth hugged Charlie.
“How did you get here?” Tink squealed.
“Seth was in Paris talking to Ivan and Otis about going to Russia,” Sissy said. “He suggested that that we surprise Charlie. I’ve just been to see Sandy.”
“How long are you here?” Noelle asked.
Unsure of what to do with her hands, Noelle clenched them in front of herself. Sissy kissed Noelle’s cheek, and Noelle threw her arms around Sissy. They held each other for a moment before Sissy stepped backwards.
“I’m here just today,” Sissy said. “I have to get back tonight.”
“So glad you’re here, Sis,” Charlie said, hugging his sister.
“Come on,” Seth said.
“Let’s get out of here,” Charlie said.
He raised a hand in good bye to Nash and nodded to the others. They walked out of the building and to Seth’s parked car.
“You think that he’s okay?” Tink asked.
“I think he’s going to be,” Nash said with a nod. “Hey, did you hear?”
“Alex and Nelson appeared,” Noelle said. “We know! We’ve heard you tell us about a million times!”
Nash grinned, and the others laughed.
“Hey, you kids need to get to class!” the hall monitor yelled.
They trotted down the hall to their classroom.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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