Spring is mostly the bearer of good news. WIth Spring comes warmer weather. Just as the men enjoy working beneath the sun, so too, do the women their chores, and the children to play their games. With the Spring come the blossoms on the trees and the rebirth of many gardens, flower and vegetable alike. Smiles are more frequent as people pass one another, and as the new season chases away the malaise that has hung over them the past few months.
With spring also comes the ill effects of allergies, or the kind of illness that comes when the seasons shift. Most often these are simple maladies, such as a cold or sinus congestion. Sometimes it brings with it the flu, or the type of infection that rattles deep in ones lungs.
This was such the case for the Robinsons, who would not be enjoying the warm sun anytime soon. As Winter faded into memory, and during the kind of warm day one should be out soaking up the sun, they were both battling a particularly nasty flu.
It had been several hours since either had been sick, but because their bathroom was closer to the living room, they were both bundled in heavy blankets on their couch. A ten gallon bucket, which Davie had earlier brought in from the garage, sat between them at their feet. Its original purpose had been to catch anything they might sick up, in the case that they couldn’t get to the bathroom in time. Now, it was a convenient trashcan for their tissues.
“Davie, honey? I think I’m getting hungry. WIll you go to the kitchen, and fetch me a cheese sandwich, dear?”
“Anything for you, love.”
Davie groaned as he sat forward, reluctant to leave the warmth of his wool cocoon. When Keesha looked up at him in concern, he forced a half-hearted smile in return.
“No,” he answered. He looked as if he were going to say something more, but he suddenly hiccupped. When she went to repeat her question, he held up a finger, turned, and ran through the kitchen door. His hip crashed into the corner of the dinner table, sending him careening out of the path of his first target and directly into one that would have to do; the sink.
Keesha was going to scold him for sure, for the mess he was making, but at least he had enough sense to empty his stomach in the side with the garbage disposal.
Several minutes later, he turned on the cold water and splashed his face. It felt good against his feverish skin, and it helped to bring his watery eyes back into focus.
“Davie? I hope you cleanin’ that up!”
“Yes, love,” he answered, ashamed.
As he set about that unpleasant task, he heard something that hadn’t reached his ears since Bryer Street lost Sammy; the sound of a child’s laughter. He lifted his attention through the window over the sink, smiling as he sought its source. His heart froze, however, at what he saw.
Vanessa Rowen was sitting on the edge of her family’s property, playing with figurines she had lined up on the sidewalk. This wasn’t anything unusual for her, as it was one of her favorite places to be while she was playing. She said she liked the see the cars up close when they drove by. It was the person with whom she was playing that caused his unease. Andy was sitting cross-legged before her, playing with what looked like a model car.
From any other point of view, it would have looked completely innocent. She would do something with her figurines. He would say something and smile, and she would giggle as if it was the most delightful thing she had ever heard. It wasn’t this image that sent chills though his body, nor was it just from the flu that he was suffering.
Every so often, while they played, Andy was nonchalantly taking pictures of her with a camera he had strung around his neck.