Episode 8: Jamie

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I leaned against an oak tree

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I leaned against an oak tree. "Why did you want me here, anyway?"

Cyan handed food to her customer. "After everything that's happened, I can't leave you by yourself. It's not good for you to coop yourself up in the house. People need to go out sometimes."

Cyan clearly thought I was a kid. It felt like she thought I was a needy little brother, too. I hated it. It was quite the role reversal. She didn't even look older than me.

"I don't want your help. Just don't go home."

This was stupid. How was this better than going in the backyard? What was the point if I wasn't going to do anything?

Although, a nap was tempting. I hadn't slept well the last several nights. It was like my mind refused to yield to my body. It was a pain, but I couldn't do much about it.

Honey crawled into my lap and curled up into a ball.


***


Somehow, I'd managed to fall asleep, but I didn't know for how long. I needed it more than I liked to admit. My body didn't want to move, but that nap swept that feeling away.

I had to get up. I didn't want to get stuck. A bathroom would've been nice, too, but that wasn't exactly an easy thing to find in the middle of a park.

Cyan glanced back at me. "If you have to take care of business, go ahead. I trust you." She turned on a grill. "If you don't wanna take her, you can leave her here. No one's gonna steal her."

Cyan trusted me? How could she trust me? Why did she trust me?

When I first met her, I ran away from her. I hadn't exactly been nice to her, either.

Honey nipped my pants.

I flicked her back. "Stop that!"

Cyan set a bowl down by her feet. It was coated with Honey. "Why don't we have a little girl time?"

"Thanks..." A sigh escaped my lips and I left to find a bathroom.

It took nowhere as long as I expected it to. I passed by a playground on my way there. With the vibrant colors, it looked brand new. When I was done, I had to stop to admire it.

Two ladies were sitting on a bench. One seemingly sensed me standing behind them.

The blonde turned to me. "Long time, no see, stranger!"

"Yeah..."

This was the lady from that store... I hadn't seen her again between then and now.

"Are you new in town?" the auburn-haired woman beside her asked.

"Yeah..."

The blonde woman smiled. "You look just like my eldest son." She laughed. "The resemblance is uncanny."

"He does." The auburn-haired woman turned her head. She stifled a laugh. "He really does."

"As you might remember, the little monkey wearing goggles is mine." Even her eyes were smiling. "He has so much energy he has a hard time sitting still at school."

That reminded me of one of my big brothers. He couldn't properly sit in a desk long enough to learn at school 'til he started high school. We even learned the same things in the beginning, cuz he happened to be at the same level.

The auburn-haired woman said, "We tend to come together since my sprout won't play if he thinks there's too many kids out there."

That reminded me of one of my sisters. She had earth powers. In the beginning, they made her incredibly sensitive to people's footsteps. For a couple years, I did the same thing this woman did with her son.

"I need to feed him!" The woman jumped. "See you later!"

The auburn-haired lady grabbed her son and left.

It was then she motioned for me to join her on the bench. "My little monkey's name is Graham. I can't remember if we exchanged names or not at the store."

"We probably didn't." My hands shook. "I'm Wyatt."

"Jamie." She offered her hand, so I took it. "Were you able to get what you needed?"

I nodded. Sweat beaded my brow. "So, your oldest son doesn't live with you anymore?"

"He went away to school fairly recently. He puts on a brave face, but I know Graham misses his big brother."

I knew exactly how that felt... My big brother had left me, too. I must've been around thirteen, cuz I was still in junior high. Even if I was home-schooled. He had to go to work. I hadn't seen him since.

"That's sorta just how it is when you're a little brother."

Even if I missed Del like crazy, I always tried to keep it from Hannah and Enji.

"Boys love being the tough guy, after all."

It was true. Enji and Hannah hated when I kept my mask on. The kids were one thing, but they hated when I did it to them. It still did it, anyway, cuz I didn't really like making them worry about it.

"How have you liked it here?"

"It's better than the neighborhood I was in before, but there's no place like home."

"There really isn't."

I nodded.

She watched Graham for a minute. "How come you decided to come out here if you don't mind me asking?"

"I was given an important job. Once it's done, I'm going back to my family. I don't know when that'll be, though."

I was glad I didn't have to lie. If I told someone outside my family about this, they'd probably assume I was lying, though. The answer might've been vague, it was still true.

"That must be hard. As a mom, I wish I could help you with that."

"Responsibility isn't always what it's cracked up to be, but it can't be ignored."

Sometimes, it was a gift from Kayleigh. Other times, it was a force intent on squeezing every drop of life out of you and then some.

"It really isn't." She smiled. "Come by the store if you ever need anything."

I smiled. "Thanks. I came here with someone. Should get back before they think I took off. I've probably been gone a while."

"See you later then, Wyatt."


***


Thoughts on how Cyan handled Star? His interaction with Jamie? How is Star as a character so far? Theories? Predictions?

~Shino out

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