CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED and SEVENTY-ONE
Tuesday midday — 12:45 p.m.
“Can I ask you something?” Holmes Olivas asked Sandy.
He was lying back with his neck resting on the edge of her sink while Sandy was washing his hair. They were in the back of Sandy’s hair salon.
“’Member how you said that I could ask you anything and you would always be honest with me?” Holmes asked.
“Yes,” Sandy said.
“You said that we were connected because of what happened to us,” Holmes said. “And that we have a deep bond that can never be broken.”
“I believe that,” Sandy said. “Do you?”
“But we also agreed that I wouldn’t keep secrets from your dad,” Sandy said.
“If you thought I was in danger,” Holmes said.
“Only then,” Sandy said. “Are you in danger?”
“No more than usual,” Holmes said. He gave her a saucy wink.
His blue eyes looked incredibly blue over his blue face mask.
Sandy gave him a soft smile. When she had met him, he had been a small undernourished boy who’d been horrifically abused. His mother had just been killed by the man he’d thought was his father, the man that he’d been named after until his recent name change. He and his brother had just moved to Denver. Alex Hargreaves had asked Sandy if she could try to connect with the boy. Alex felt that Sandy’s recovery from her traumatic past might help Holmes find his way through this new life. In the meantime, Holmes had grown into a lovely, charming, tall boy who was sometimes too bright for his own good.
Holmes’ eyes squinted as if he were smiling.
“What’s up?” Sandy asked.
“Heather is the demi-god Hedone, right?” Holmes asked.
“She has become a full goddess,” Sandy said. “It’s complicated but that’s where things stand. Basically, her father went insane while looking for her mother. He has now retired and retreated with her mother to a romantic island somewhere.”
“Huh,” Holmes said. “Uh, don’t be mad but I listened to your conversation.”
“Oh?” Sandy asked.
“I didn’t mean to,” Holmes said. “I finished an exam early so I just came over. I thought we could eat something if you weren’t busy.”
“Makes sense,” Sandy said.
“You’re not mad that I listened in?” Holmes asked.
“Not particularly,” Sandy said. “Nothing I do is that confidential. Plus you know everyone anyway.”
“Valerie is a siren,” Holmes said. “Delphie is an oracle. Tanesha glows and Jill radiates power.”
“I don’t know why Tanesha and Jill do that,” Holmes said.
“You should ask them,” Sandy said. “I know that they will tell you all about it if you ask.”
“Okay.” Holmes nodded. “I will.”
“Did you hear something that you’d like to talk about?” Sandy asked.
She finished rinsing the conditioner from his hair. She wrapped his head in a towel and helped him sit up. They walked together to the station she was working at. Because of Covid-19, they were alone in the salon. Sandy was, of course, also wearing a face mask.
“Um, yeah,” Holmes said.
Sandy started combing through his curly dishwater blond hair. Like most people, his hair had grown long over the “stay at home.” It was now past his shoulders. After a few minutes, she leaned to the side.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow...
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