This is a work of fiction. All concepts, characters and events portrayed in this book are used fictitiously and any resemblance to real people or events is purely coincidental.
Copyright Evelyn Hively, 2014
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means without prior written permission of the publisher, nor be circulated in any form of bind or cover other than that in which it is published without a similar condition being imposed on the subsequent publisher.
The day was passing slowly. Joseph and Lacy were talking each other’s ear off, bouncing between topics and parts of topics faster than Gnobin or Mace could keep up with. Gnobin was displeased to say nothing, but Lacy was happy. Something was starting to shift and he could see it. It was a blinding shift, but it was still there. Lacy was healing in a manner that he hadn’t seen before. It was a manner that had been missing. Gnobin sauntered over to the futon and jumped up on top of it. He sniffed where the man had been sleeping and frowned at the two humans when they burst out laughing again.
“You’ve gorgeous eyes Lacy…” he murmured.
She ducked her head shyly.
“Most people can’t hold their gaze for long.”
He chuckled as Lacy pardoned herself for a few minutes to use the bathroom. He stood up and walked over to where he could see the books on her bookshelves. They were built into the wall, sitting on top of a rock and mortar wall. The cabin had more character than his old DS. She had several science fiction books, several witchcraft books, several how-to, even an anthology of Ansel Adams. He noted the spines and the bookmarks. The one in Ansel Adams intrigued him the most because she had actually used a padded paperclip to mark it. He pulled it off the shelf and looked. He smiled when he saw it was the “Tetons and Snake River.”
Lacy smiled at him from the kitchen. He glanced up at her and grinned back. She poured themselves another cup of coffee and they sat back down.
“It’s a much smaller library than I used to have.”
“You would have it bigger?”
“Oh much. At least two or three hundred more books that I’ve read and will re-read.”
Joseph blinked a couple of times.
“Well… I can’t stand incomplete series’s and having how-to books around is a very good thing.”
“Just not used to hearing someone lament not having enough books. Although I’ve something tell you…”
Lacy looked at him and raised an eyebrow.
“I have like…nine boxes of books in a storage unit in San Diego that I haven’t been able to unpack in about four years.”
Lacy gave him a scolding glare.
“That’s book abuse and you know it.”
He chuckled and then reached for her hand, taking it into his own.
“Lacy, we have to keep in touch girl. You are something special and… I’ve not really had this kind of conversation with a woman in a long time and my mother doesn’t count,” he said to her, keeping his gaze steady with her eyes again.
“Oh we will be keeping in touch. You have my word.”
“Can you play rummy?” he asked, picking up the deck of cards she had.
Gnobin shook his head from his vantage point as the man started dealing.
They’re going to be at this the rest of night. He scowled.
Katana put her head around the corner of the cabin. Jealous?
NO! …at least I don’t think it’s jealousy.
Katana shook her head laughing and went back to sunbathing.
Lacy hopped up for a few moments and started grabbing a few cans off the shelf. Joseph watched her assemble the ingredients for what looked like some kind of really hearty stew.
“About time for Charles to be heading back then?”
“He’s probably already turned around. I start this now to cook at a low simmer and he’ll be a rather happy man as will you be considering we completely missed lunch.”
Joseph looked at the time and sighed. Then brightened when Lacy dropped a bag of trail mix in front of him.
“My own mix. Banana chips, raisins, dark chocolate chips, cashews, peanuts, blueberries, pineapples, and mango.”
“That’s a lot of calories.”
“I need it to be like that. I might be thin here, but it’s not from trying. Last time I calculated, I needed 3800 a day to keep up with what I’m using,” she told him.
“So you need a lot of calories and probably three meals a day with two snacks at least…gotcha.”
Lacy just snorted as she went about chopping up a couple of potatoes and dumping tomatoes, beans, and several other things into the pot then mixed in the stew meat. Joseph marveled at her movements and how efficiently she threw the meal together. She was back to sitting with him in no time.
“Usually I eat on leftovers for a few days when I make stew, but I have no worries about four days of leftovers tonight.”
He leaned over as he pulled her closer and kissed her on the cheek.
“I can’t wait to see what else you can cook.”