Here’s another excerpt from the latest piece of fiction that I’m working on. It is lightly edited.
He could only stare when she opened the door. Gone was the glamorous woman he’d gotten to know. In its place was a shadow of that person. Of course, he’d seen her dressed down before but this was different. Even when she was dressed for work she still glowed, looked as if she was walking the runway. That was not the case today.
Her face carried the hollows he knew had haunted his months before. She’d lost weight. Aubrey wore a pair of navy blue striped silk pajamas, a white V-neck t-shirt and a gray robe. Her feet we bare and her hair was in a two braids circling her head. “This is not a good time, Ryan,” she said tiredly.
Before I could say anything in response, RJ Brock and Spock were all over her in a symphony of voices and barks. Then he saw Lucky slowly moving towards them in a pair of PJ Masks pajamas. As the crew ran towards him she stepped back and motioned me inside before turning to close the door. She started towards the kids but his hand caught one of hers.
“I brought some stuff that the kids wanted to bring for Lucky. They were sick when they heard about him being in the hospital,” he explained. Ryan still held the bag that the kids insisted was full of stuff Lucky had to have.
She looked back towards the kids who were moving towards the room Lucky had been in when they arrived. She motioned for Ryan to bring the bag and began walking towards the room. Ryan held it close to him and followed her.
“Seriously I don’t have time for whatever this is Ryan. I don’t feel like going through it. I just need to get back to my son. You know how that is, right?” she said.
“Yes, I get all of that but you had to know that I was going to show up as soon as I found out. Why didn’t you call me? Why are you trying to go through all of this alone?” he responded.
She plopped down on the yellow, gray and ivory Ikat sofa “I’m not alone. I have my parents and my crew. I didn’t call because…,” her voice trailed off as RJ jumped into her lap and gave her a hug. She ran her fingers through RJ’s curly ponytails before turning back to face him.
“You know that you can still count on me. Even when you don’t want to,” he told her. He knew that his apology hadn’t meant much to her but he still wanted her to know that she could rely on him. “You had to know that I would want to know and would want to check on you and Lucien once I’d heard,” he told her.
She just looked at him. Aubrey didn’t know how to even start the conversation. Or if she wanted to.
“Talk to me,” he said. He looked over at his daughter still curled in Aubrey’s lap and told her to go play. He waited while she glared at him before sliding on the floor to make her way to the boys on the other side of the room near the windows.
“The doctors want to keep testing for donors next week. My attorney and Max’s aunt have both told him but since he might be a carrier they just want to clear him. He hasn’t responded,” Aubrey told him.