Two Denver Police officers came in the gate to Aden’s backyard. Aden popped to his feet.
“Are you Aden Norsen?”
“Would you mind stepping out of the hot tub, sir?”
Sandy stood when Aden hopped out of the hot tub. She watched the police say something to Aden. His mouth dropped open and his face blanched white. He shook his head back and forth.
Before they could tell her not to, Sandy got out of the hot tub to call Jill. Jill’s cell phone rang once … and ADEN WAS IN HANDCUFFS!!
Rang twice … and Jill pushed opened the glass sliding door from the house. In two steps, Jill encircled her best friend in a hug.
“You can hang up,” Jill said.
Terrified and humiliated, Sandy clung to Jill.
“I don’t know what happened. He was just telling me funny stories … How did you get here so fast?”
“I live with a psychic who has Aden’s house key,” Jill said. “Let’s go inside.”
Dripping wet, Sandy shivered. Jill led her to the nearest bathroom. Jill wrapped her in a warm towel.
“Stay here,” Jill said. She took another towel and left.
Sandy stood in the bathroom shivering from the shock. Just like every other experience in Sandy’s life, her moment of blissful happiness was shattered by something awful.
She wanted to cry.
She wanted to scream.
Instead, she felt the familiar sinking numbness. The image of Aden in handcuffs bounced around her brain. Once again, life confirmed that she did not deserve to be happy.
“They want to search the house,” Jill said. “Did you guys drink tonight?”
“No, he can’t drink. He’s an alcoholic.”
“Great,” Jill said. “Why don’t we make some hot chocolate? Aden’s in the backyard. I gave him a towel but I bet he’s cold.”
“He’s not arrested?”
“Not yet,” Jill said. “They’re checking the house for drugs.”
“They want us to stay in one area of the house. I told them we’d be in the kitchen.”
Jill helped Sandy dress. Taking Sandy’s arm, she led her into the kitchen.
“Now what do I do?” Jill asked.
Sandy shook her head at Jill, and Jill stepped aside.
The kitchen was a place of comfort for Sandy. Ever since they were kids, Sandy had made hot chocolate for Jill when they were upset. While the police worked their way through the house with dogs, Sandy’s mind turned to the step-by-step process of cooking. Her anxiety unwound and her confidence returned in the normalcy of making hot chocolate for Jill. She even whipped up a pan of brownies. The police were still working when Jill and Sandy went to the backyard with mugs of hot chocolate and a plate of fresh brownies.
Jill opened the sliding door to the back yard for Sandy to go through. Aden’s back was to the door while he talked to Sam. Feeling their movement, Aden turned. He was so delighted to see Sandy that he rushed to her. Sandy blushed at his unrestrained delight. Jill took the brownies from Sandy. Aden lifted her off the ground in a hug.
“Hi, I’m Sam Lipson,” Sam said to Sandy after Aden released her. “I love brownies. Do you mind? Delphie made some today. They disappeared with Katy before I could have even one.”
Sandy nodded her head. Sam took a brownie off the plate.
“What happened?” Sandy asked.
“They raided Nuala’s house,” Aden said. “I guess there was some drug something … making drugs … something … I don’t know. They found Noelle and Nash locked in a closet. Nuala said I was her drug supplier. Well, they ran my record and … I’m so sorry this happened to you. I … I’m sorry.”
“They were just going to arrest you?”
“That’s what happens,” Aden said. “I have a record of drug dealing and violent behavior. They restrain first, ask questions later. Luckily, Big Sam came by.”
The retelling of Denver Cereal, Volume 1, continues tomorrow…
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