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The Lunch Counter

At the moment I have a wicked drug hangover working, and it’s making me loopy as help.  I felt a chill coming on last night and took some Theraflu right before heading off to bed, and now–I think I needed a few hours more of sleep, but I kept waking up, which means I wasn’t about to sleep at all.  I get like this sometimes:  there’s some kind of disorientation that wakes me up and keeps me up, so it’s really Catch-22 time for me.

My eyes are also gummed up bad this morning.  I’ve tried cleaning them three or four times, and it feels like I’m seeing through a haze for the most part.  I hate when this happens, too, and it tend to drive me a little crazy.

It’s going to make for an interesting walk into work this morning.

Chapter Seventeen is down and away, and Eighteen is here.  I finished Annie’s chapter with just under four hundred words, and then got into Christmas Eve at the Malibeys–

Once more it's on like a video game I haven't played in decades.

Once more it’s on like . . . a video game I haven’t played in decades?

Tell you what’s happening then, right?  Well, the title of the post should give you a hint:

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

Kerry reached the bottom of the stairs and spun around around the bottom banister post before walking down the hall towards the kitchen. He didn’t look inside the lounge as he passed the open door, nor did he check the dining room. He proceeded directly for the pantry and removed a can, setting it on the counter before removing a pot from one of the drawers. As soon as the contents of the can were in the pot and the fire lit, he turned towards the refrigerator, found what he needed, and set them on the counter next to the stove.

He waited for the soup to come to a slow bubble before he started making his sandwich. Normally his mother only kept white bread in the house, but they went shopping the Saturday after returning and he picked up a loaf of rye and a few other things for lunch. He had lettuce, plenty of cheese, and horseradish, but he wasn’t allowed to pick up tomatoes: his mother said she didn’t like the “look” of the regular salad tomatoes, and she wouldn’t let him picked up the ones on the vine.

That’s the one thing I miss about Salem. He sliced cheese and set it on one slice of rye. They can jaunt in fresh food from anywhere. I’m sure there are places around Cardiff connected to The Foundation where they do the same

“What are you making?”

 

I looked up the cost of tomatoes at Tesco, and they’re like £2 a kilogram now, so they were cheaper in 2012.  Why didn’t Kerry’s mom want to buy any?  Maybe she really didn’t like how they  looked–or maybe she was just being a bitch because her son was in “I want some tomatoes ” mode.  She’s right there, however, to see what The Red is Cookin’, and to her surprise she gets an answer:

 

He turned around and found his mother standing in the entryway from the kitchen to the family room. “I’m making some soup and a sandwich.”

“What kind?” She took a couple of steps into the kitchen and tried to look around without appearing too inquisitive.

“Oh, I grabbed a can of broccoli cheddar, and I’m making a turkey sandwich.” He checked the pot and gave the soup a quick stir. “I’m wondering if I should put this in a pan and make it sorta like a panini.”

She watched him prepare his lunch for a few moments. “Do that have something at your school that lets you do that?”

He nodded. “Yeah, they have a couple of panini presses.”

Louise wanted to check the contents of the pot, but she didn’t want to go around Kerry to do so. “You never used to have soup and sandwiches for lunch.”

“Well . . .” He shrugged as he laid turkey slices over a slice of swiss. “The school has a buffet table every lunch with this—different soups, meats, and bread.” He began smiling. “They have tomato and clam chowder, and a great French onion soup.” He sliced off another sliver of swiss cheese. “And then there’s deli turkey, and pastrami, and they have this brisket . . .” Kerry looked up, smiling, remembering some of his lunches. “I like to put that on ciabatta.”

“Ciabatta.” She leaned towards the soup pot. “And brisket. Must be nice.”

“The school wants to make sure we’re well fed.” He gave the soup a couple of quick stirs and turned off the heat. “What can I say? The Foundation has money, and they don’t let us to go without.”

 

“Ciabatta . . . and Brisket.”  You can almost hear the eye roll as she says that.  Something I should point out:  at the end of Annie’s chat with her father, he mentioned they’re going to jaunt off to Valencia, Spain, to have tapas for dinner, and on this day, Christmas Eve–that’s when this scene takes place, right around noon–while Kerry is making soup and a sandwich, Annie’s off to Sofia, Bulgaria, to dine in a private room with all her relatives.  But he’s the one sort of getting passive-aggressive shit about eating brisket on ciabatta at school.

I’m sure this is gonna be a pleasant lunch.

One last thing:  it was a year ago I posted the scene from the first novel where Kerry, after coming close to dying in the Day of the Dead attacks, finally told Annie that he loved her–although, at the time, he didn’t realize that wasn’t the first time he’d told her, but that’s beside the point.  He told her, and she was a happy girl–sort of, but that’s beside the point, too.

The interesting thing is that of the three comments I received, all of them worried something bad was about to happen.  Here it is, a year later–both in real live and in my novels–and Kerry’s still here, still kicking, and Annie is still with him.  So unlike a George R. R. Martin book, nothing bad has happened to my kids–

Yet.

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21 thoughts on “The Lunch Counter

  1. Eh. I think I know what’s going to happen….. and what Mrs. Malibey is thinking as she observes Kerry cooking an ” elaborate” breakfast.

    Mrs.malibey will resent the fact that Kerry is inadvertently showing there’s a stark contrast to his life at Salem. and the malibey household. Kerry is innocent , of course, but I’m sure Mrs. Malubey is thinking , ” getting snobby now, aren’t you, Kerry . ” What’s gonna happen is that maybe she’s going to bitch about the school spoiling Kerry.

    • You can kind of guess she’s setting up a bit of a “Oh, so they’re doing that/this/whatever there” and wondering, yes, are they spoiling you.” Not that Kerry has ever asked for anything “special” in his life: just little things like tomatoes and stuff.

      It’s really a bit more complex than that, and he’s gonna call it out, for sure.

        • Kerry likes tomatoes on his sandwiches. Maybe his mother thinks he’s being too “high class.” 🙂

          Yeah, wait until she finds out about that Girl Who Writes. “Well, she has money, Mom, so I can get anything I want!” Then his mom would think he’s going to be lazy and live off her.

          • What the heck. Having a tomato on a sandwich is high class ? She lived in Ca, right. We put tomatoes in our sandwiches, 2 or 3 layers. What the heck is wrong with Mrs. malibey ? It’s not as if she’s poo and uneducated. Her husband works for BBC, for pete’s sakes.

          • What the heck. And she’s punishing him by not buying tomatoes ? How puny ! I can just imagine what she’ll do when she finds out her son is a witch and Salem is not what she thinks it is. Dang. Hurry up, Cassie.

          • If you think being a witch is bad, wait until she finds out his girlfriend is teaching him death spells. Would you not feel a touch of fear if you knew your 13 year old son could kill you with a wave of their hand? 😉

            Maybe she’ll buy him tomatoes then.

            It’s a good thing Kerry’s used to putting up with crap.

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