He scanned both sides of the divided lanes, a chaos of headlights and commuting vehicles. She might as well be a needle in a goddamned haystack.
Finn had never been in a room like this, whisked away from the labor suite into the NICU and covered in discs and tubes. This dad got to unwrap the baby as a nurse started the process of cleaning him off, the white stuff — vernix, Corabelle had called it — still on his neck and in the creases of his arms and legs.My boots were rooted to the floor, and no matter how hard I wanted to turn away from the scene, I couldn’t move. The dad laughed behind his mask, and rage started to build in my chest, so hot and sudden that it shocked me. This guy deserved his moment. He was probably raised in some white-bread suburb with a super-dad who’d coached Little League and took him for pizza after, not flinging wrenches if his ten-year-old son’s fingers were too fumbling to get a corroded clamp off a battery.
Maybe the universe knew what it was doing, giving healthy kids to some people and sorrow to others.Hell, now I was in no shape to see Corabelle, to soothe her. I had to bring it down. I managed to make my legs move and I circled back, heading to the elevator bank so I could cross over to her wing via some other floor, any other ward but this one.I forced myself to forget what I’d seen as I approached her hallway. Straighten up. Be there for her. But I still felt sharp-edged as I entered the room. She sat on the bed, her knees balancing a notebook as she tried to type my scribblings from astronomy into her iPad.
Your handwriting sucks, my dear, she said.My fingers have better uses, I said, pulling a stool up next to her bed.
Is that as close as you’re getting? She flattened her knees and set the iPad and notebook on the side table.
Well, scoot over then, you bed hog.This here and now was mostly psychological warfare – and it was fucking good. If I hadn’t known her so well, I’d be thinking the exact same thing that Vinnie was currently shouting: Get Homicidal Barbie away from me! The bitch is fucking crazy!
I’m so glad Ava came along, chuckled Jared telepathically. She’s spiced up the interrogation and managed to crack the fucker without much torture.Huffing, Ava came to stand beside me, crossing her arms over her chest and pouting – the image of petulance. I didn’t even get to break his femur bone!
I spoke in a voice that a parent might use to calm a child on the verge of a tantrum. I’m sure Sam will let you continue if Vinnie doesn’t give us the information we want. Right, Coach?Sam nodded reassuringly at Ava. Of course.