Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Murder at the Olin Part 5 - Good Neighbours

Vincent DiAntoni had been more than usually happy when his father announced he would be spending the weekend in Vancouver with some new girlfriend. His father wasn't usually around, and when he was, it was argument after argument. But it only happened when his father was drunk ... which was about 90% of the time. But Vincent was glad to have the house to himself, as his gut was in knots ever since he's opened that bag at the laundromat.

He remembered a couple weeks back when the moving trucks has moved a lady into the apartment above them. As it turned out, she was a cop, which automatically made Vincent nervous as his father hated cops for many reasons, probably not the least of reasons being his neglect and occasional abuse of his fourteen year old son.

But now, Vincent needed to drop off this bag of ... really shady stuff. He had showered and put on clean jeans and a long sleeved baseball shirt. He kept his clothes and apartment clean ... like his mother would have. But she was dead now, and his father Gino wouldn't or couldn't be bothered.

Once dressed, Vincent took the bag out of its hiding place, never once having considered asking his father what to do. He took a deep breath and hefted the bag, leaving his apartment and taking the stairs to the second floor. Taking another deep breath, he lifted his hand and knocked.

Darcy was sleeping in, which she rarely did. Last night's stakeout had been an emotionally heavy one. She was dreaming again and thrashing fitfully. It was always the same dream, reliving the horror of that one fateful night in Afghanistan. She had been called in to get some refugees out by chopper and had landed it in what was once a school field beside a school turned shelter. As some other peacekeepers ran in she and two others held cover between the chopper and the building. It was open, to open and the whole team was twitchy. Just as they were bringing the first family out a shot rang out from the edge of the field. The snipers had been perfectly camouflaged in the trees. Darcy heard her commander yell "Fire on the trees!" and they emptied their rounds. Four snipers dropped out and fell dead to the ground. She and another soldier ran to check the tree line before the refugees were moving again. It seemed clear. Darcy stopped beside one of the fallen snipers. This was one she hit with her fire. She couldn't tell if it was a male or a female but the headscarf had loosened. She pulled out her flashlight and shone it as she gave a little tug on the scarf and then gasped. He was barely more than a child, tall for his age maybe but no more than 14. He had a sweet smooth face and beautiful brown eyes with long lashes. The eyes were still open but empty of life and his jaw was slack, blood on his lips and teeth indicated he had coughed some up and suffered before he left the world. Darcy shot straight up in bed and then the sobbing started. It came from a deep place inside her like a wound that would never close. She curled into a ball on her bed and let it take her instead of fighting it like she used to. Her counselor had told her this was part of the healing. She hated every minute of it. Cried out and raw from her core she started to rise from the bed, only to hear knocking at her door. She stumbled to the door and looked through the peephole. Darcy was decent in pajama pants and an old tshirt but it was that kid from the second floor, just who she wanted to run into after her flashback dream, another tall for his age 14 year old with big brown eyes. She sighed and opened the door, putting on a smile "Hello?" He was holding a duffel bag and looking nervous.

Vincent bit his lip when the door opened and it was obvious to him that this woman had been asleep. Waking his father was always a disaster. He gulped audibly, still clutching the duffel. "Um .... sorry if I woke you. Officer. I just ... yea ... I ... I found this in the laundromat and .... um ... " he curses himself for his nervousness.

Darcy softened at his nervousness "It's OK. I should be up anyways. Come in. Let's take a look on the kitchen table.......Vincent right? You can call me Darcy." She had heard his name, heard a man, who she assumed was the kid’s father, scream it at him from the floor below unfortunately.

Vincent nodded slightly. "Yea ... I'm Vincent. DiAntoni." he comes in cautiously, looking around as all curious kids do. Of course the kitchen is right off the front door. "OK, so I was doing the laundry, like always. And I went across the street for hot chocolate and a snack while the clothes dry. I came back and I'm putting the dry clothes i the basket and .. I was sort of on auto-pilot, right?" he rambles as he sets the bag on the table. "And I go in this drier and realize that the clothes aren't mine and my Dad's and this bag is in it. I mean, I opened it and when I saw this, I was like holy shit and I just took it home. I mean some kid might have found it instead of me." he says as if he is some forty year old citizen instead of a kid himself. He withdraws his hands and looks at the bag.

Darcy listens to Vincent, starting to look fascinated by his maturity at 14, and nods along while she reaches to unzip the bag after he sets it down. She starts to speak as she unzips but then halts and stares at the contents wide eyed "Auto pilot on laundry at your god!" She steps back now in cop mode "Vincent, did you handle any of this stuff? This is evidence. I need to get my gloves....."

Vincent shakes his head. "No way ... I mean no way ma'am. Officer. I opened it and saw the gun and closed it." he holds up both of his hands as if proving he didn't touch it. "Wait ... evidence?" he arches his brows wondering if he'd missed something. Then he remembers hearing about the dead guy in the trees and his eyes widen.

Darcy walks to a bureau by the front door with her work stuff and puts on a pair of latex gloves. She picks through the bag finding a black ski mask and clothing, an assault rifle, a switchblade and a handgun. She examines the handgun and nods to herself. This was likely the weapon that killed Roy Carver. She looks up at Vincent "Good job kid. Why didn't you take this to the station or call it into the tips line? You could still probably get the cash reward for the tip." As she talks she walks back to the bureau and picks up her work cell.

Vincent stares at the weapons and then looks up when he is spoken to. "My father hates cops, so I just ... I mean I saw you in uniform so I thought it would be okay to turn it into you." he blinks at the mention of a reward. "Well, I did it so no kid would find it and shoot themselves, but I won't say no to money. I'm saving to move out, if I can." the last few words sound doubtful.

Darcy holds up a finger as she makes a call. Reporting this is time sensitive and she can talk to Vincent after. She walks to the bedroom to be discreet and calls it into the station. A car is dispatched to pick up the evidence,

She comes back into the room "Hates cops hey? At least I know which door not to knock on if I need a cup of flour from a neighbour. How old are you Vincent?"

Vincent looks around the place while she is gone, feeling decidedly nervous. When she comes back and poses her question, he shrugs. "Well, you can ... my Dad's gone most of the time and when he isn't he's in his room, if he isn't giving me a hard time." he shrugs again. "I'm fourteen. A ... music student at the Academy." he pauses, always hesitant about saying what instrument he plays.

Darcy's apartment is spotlessly clean. She has photographic prints mounted on the wall that look like pictures from a National Geographic spread on the middle east and others from remote parts of Canada, glaciers from the Arctic, glorious waterfalls and sheer cliff faces, all taken from what would have to be a view in the air. There are also framed photographs of her family around. Her father by a fighter plane in his uniform from when he was younger, her parents at a table holding champagne at their 25th anniversary, A few groups of four shots from different eras revealing that Darcy has a twin sister. In one picture Darcy is in her army uniform, going off on her first tour. Her sister Marianne clings to her in a strappy little dress and heels like she's trying to drag her away from leaving. Their parents standing behind them both looking like their hearts are full of pride.

Darcy chuckles and then says with a look of dawning "The harp? Is that you? You're really good!"

Once she comes back, Vincent boldly stands and wanders into her living room, looking at all of the pictures until she mentions the harp. Then he turns red. "Thanks. My mother taught me at first ... She got me into the Academy ... I've been on the waiting list since I was ten." he sounds n between pride and shame. "Dad says it's a girl's instrument, so that makes me .. I dunno .. gay I guess." his eyes drop to the floor. She's probably heard his father yelling at him about being a real man and the like.

Darcy sighs. What a horrible father this kid has to have, She looks kindly at Vincent "You have a gift Vincent. There are no girls or boys instruments. And gay should never be an insult, ever. Don't let anyone take away your joy. I love hearing you play. And you're at the right school from what I hear." She notices where his gaze was and gestures at a picture of a bustling market "That's the Sarposha Bazaar in Kandahar City. It was the most interesting place in Afghanistan. You could almost forget there was a war going on....and they had music every day. Nothing like harps, mostly lutes and lyres, but still lovely to hear when you're haggling over the price of figs."

Vincent simply shrugs. "I don't think I'm gay. I've been with girls." he 'defends' himself. "I like playing ... and I'm glad you like it too." he perks up at the picture. "War must be pretty bad. I play the lyre too. Miss Woll ... she teaches strings ... she has me doing both." he shrugs. "I'm supposed to play at the Winter Festival?" he says it like he doesn't exactly know what that is, which is possible, since he is new to town, just like she is. "My lyre is hidden, tho. Don't tell my Dad I have it, please. It cost me two thousand bucks. My father won't destroy the harp, because it was my mother's, and her mothers and back through who knows how long. I make extra money ... or I used to playing on the streets in Toronto. I probably will in Vancouver once we're settled in."

Darcy laughs "Hey I wasn't assuming anything about your love life kid." More seriously she asks "How long ago did you lose your mom? If you don't mind my asking."

Vincent blushes. "Just saying is all." he sobers. "She died a couple years ago. She had brain cancer. Before she died, she took me to the bank and started me a bank account. I guess she knew what I was in for with my Dad." he shrugs. "Five thousand dollars. I spent two on the lyre. It's an antique. Celtic." he sounds proud of himself. "I restored it myself and it sounds pretty sweet!" he sighs. "I have some left. Sometimes I dip into it for extra money if my Dad's real bad, but I'm getting the two thousand back slowly." he sounds very proud of himself.

Frances Sharp walks up the stairs to the third floor and stops in front of Lynch's door. Curious she gives a knock.

Darcy looks pained at his story and is about to say something in reply when she hears the knock. She gives Vincent a little comforting pat on the shoulder instead and walks by him to the door and opens it. She smiles at Francis "Sharp, Hi. come on in. This is my neighbour Vincent. He turned in this bag this morning to me." She looks towards her kitchen table.

Vincent almost starts when the knock comes, but when Frank is let in he smiles. "Hey Miss Sharp." he lifts a hand to her.

Frank raises her brows. "Hey Vincent." she looks at Darcy. "I teach the keyboards and music history at the Academy." she pulls out some gloves and moves to the table. "Right. I'll get this downstairs as soon as I get back." she looks at Vincent. "Good job, kid. I'd say tell your Dad hello, but ..."

Vincent chuckles. "Yea ... well .. He's in Vancouver this weekend, so ... that's probably why you haven't seen much of him." he shrugs it off.

Frank nods and claps him on the shoulder. "Well, that's probably for the best." she glances at Darcy with a knowing look, as if she is glad to see him with a responsible adult. She then grabs the bag and heads for the door. "Lynch, I'll see you later and Vincent, I'll see you in class." and she's gone.

Darcy smiles at Frank as she efficiently deals with the bag and heads out "See you Sharp, and thanks." She turns back to Vincent "Small world. Smaller town. Must be a music thing." She had heard the bit about Frank knowing his father and made some predictions as to why in her head from the tone of it. Darcy looks around her kitchen and opens the fridge with a frown. she skipped grocery shopping yesterday when she got send out on that stakeout. There's still a walnut burger in there but.....she looks at the kid "Hey you want to go grab some breakfast kid? I'll buy. I just need to change."

Vincent nods. "Yea. In Toronto it was like nobody knows nobody, but here ... everybody knows everything. But Miss Sharp makes history fun. Told me there is a male harpist I should listen to, so I might get his album." he looks at the fridge. "I never had a burger. I went in to try the fries and they're really good but the lady is kinda weird. Like the nice lady talking to herself in the middle of the street weird." he chuckles, thinking about Rain. "Sure. Food sounds good. But it IS a small town. You might have people thinking we're dating." he teases, since she knows about his love life.

Darcy rolls her eyes and laughs "Yeah I think we're safe. They might think I'm your aunt or something. I'm too old to be your date." She gives Vincent a very pedantic pat on the head look and adds "The Sprouts lady is interesting for sure, in a good way as far as I can tell. She makes a mean tahini too. How bout that Breakfast Nook place? I feel like something fried with eggs."

Vincent chuckles. "Aunt Darcy?" he rolls it around and shrugs. "That works too. What's a tahini?" but hearing about the Breakfast Nook his eyes brighten. "Ohhhh WAFFLES!" and he bounces on his feet, acting more like 14 than he has yet. "But I'm warning ya. I can eat."

Darcy chuckles "I'd be worried if you couldn't at your age. Give me a sec and I'll tell you about tahini as we walk there." She disappears to her room again and quickly throws on black jeans, a bra, a fresh shirt and socks and a green hoodie. She runs her hand through her hair looking at it in the dresser mirror and just shrugs and stuffs it under a black baseball cap that says CFB Trenton with a graphic of a small fighter plane. She breezes through the main room again and pops into the bathroom to pee, splash water on her face, slap on deodorant and give her teeth a quick brush. This all takes her a total of 3 and a half minutes. Picking up her slip on style sneakers and stepping into them she says "OK to food!"

Vincent takes the time to look at more pictures, but she comes back fast. "WOW ... you're fast." he smiles and hops to it, leaving with her. "Food!"

Darcy locks up and heads down the stairs and out the door. It's misty outside but not quite a full rain, one of those days where your skin and clothes just feel damp all day. She walks at a quick pace but not her fastest and starts talking as they make their way "Tahini is a sesame seed paste. It's in hummus, giving that nutty flavour. You can make it into a sauce with garlic and parsley for things like falafel. Some middle eastern desserts even use it as a base for fudge like sweets. Have you ever heard of Halva? That's a sesame based Jewish delicacy. I'm not Jewish, but it's delicious."

Vincent pulls the hood of his hoodie up as they hit the mist. He looks at her as if she's speaking Greek. "I'm Italian and Irish ... never heard of ANY of that, but it sounds good." he is a stomach with legs.

As they reach the restaurant, Darcy respectfully takes off her hat. Her hair is a bit of a mess but she doesn't look like she's worried about it. She spots an empty booth and doesn't see a host or hostess type. There's no one else waiting so she head juts at it and then sidles into a bench, placing her hat on the table against the wall. "My ancestry's part Irish too, the Lynch side. Maternal side is French Canadian, bit of Metis and Scottish. But my Dad will tell anyone who listens that the Irish saved the world, possibly with potatoes or beer. His argument falters when we bring up the blight of course." she laughs.

Vincent watches her and lowers his hood as well. He sits with her, glad they are near the kitchen window. The cook inside smiles and waves at them. "My mother only told me that the Irish made beautiful music. And my Dad .... well ... he isn't real culturally knowledgeable. I kinda think I am lucky I know I was born in Canada." he grins. "You mean the potato blight, right?"

Darcy smiles at the cook too and then nods "Yeah that's the one alright. Canada is a pretty awesome place to be. Is your Dad Italian...or descended from? Do you speak it? The only thing I ever learned in Gaelic was Kiss my ass. Hog case you're wondering." she jokes. A waitress comes and fills their cups with coffee and passes them menus. Darcy thanks her and opens her menu.

Vincent smiles and then laughs. "I only know how to swear, but I can do it in Italian and Gaelic." He takes his menu and again sort of mirrors Darcy by thanking the waitress, as if it isn't something he's done much. He opens it. "I kind of forgot my manners ... these last couple years. Sorry."

Darcy smiles and teases him "They don't have waffles to go out and eat in Toronto so you could practice? Pretty big city for no waffles. Wow it must be a change living here. I've only ever been in small town Canada and the big cities have all been through the military. Air force brat as a kid. We moved all over but tiny little towns mostly. I did my police academy training in Vancouver though. I think I hate the place now.....god the traffic just crawls everywhere and how many Starbucks does one city need? Seriously...."

Vincent chuckles. "I don't go out to eat now that mom's dead, unless I take myself. But it IS a big change here. I didn't sleep real well the first week. I almost kept the television on all night for some noise." he looks at her. "Really? I don't know if I would do well in the military. Cities are loud compared. It's funny the closest they have to Starbucks here is Sigh. They have good coffee and all, but I really like going to Perkatory ... the name is great! I get all over doing chores after school." he arches his brows and reads a description from the menu. "Three plate sized buttermilk pancakes and three plate sized sausage patties." he bites his lip, as if he's seen the woman he knows he will one day marry.

Darcy runs her finger over the eggy breakfast options, deciding and saying "I like that Perkatory place too. They understand what coffee is." She looks up and holds up her cup "This." she sips for emphasis "is coffee, not bad. I'm really a Timmy's person like my Dad. Mom and Mari are Starbucks freaks. They keep sending me cards for it even though I told them there isn't one here. I keep pawning them off on coworkers going to the mainland." She looks amused by his three plate finds "We need to photograph that if it's what they advertise. I think you're drooling kid." The waitress returns and Darcy says "I'll have the Sunshine Special, eggs over easy, whole wheat toast please." She looks across to Vincent waiting for him to go next.

Vincent blushes a little bit. "I like Starbucks seasonal stuff. I have to get the pumpkin spice latte just because." he laughs a little at the comment about his drool. He looks at the waitress. "I'll have the Triple Sausage Pancakes, plus the scrambled eggs and an orange juice and ..." he glances at Darcy as if hoping for approval. "Coffee?"

Darcy nods, laughing "All good yep." The waitress walks away and she replies to his Starbucks seasonal defense "I won't hold it against you, and I might pass you a card later." Darcy feels her phone vibrate in her pocket and pulls it out "Sorry about this.....oh god...OK really sorry but I have to take this...and it's Facetime.....ugh..." She holds out her phone and presses the button with an awkward smile "Hi Mari."

A little squeal comes out of the phone followed by "You're finally there. I've been texting you Darc! Guess what guess what guess what?!!"

Darcy gives a little wince and forces out "Whaaat?"

"I'm closing my shop for Thanksgiving Sunday AND Monday and Mom and Dad are driving here Saturday. Then we can all come SEE you! You got a pull out couch right? You should probably give Mom and Dad your bed know his back...but we can bunk in on that together.....Darc....what have you done with your hair? Aren't you using that product I sent you?"

Darcy sits and listens as her sister talks a mile a minute. She looks apologetically at Vincent.

Vincent only has time to say "Cool." when her phone interrupts them. He listens, while trying to be polite and look like he isn't listening. Instead he sips the coffee the waitress brings him, and then adds sugar and creamer to it.

Darcy nods along and tries to interject but Marianne is a runaway train right now and just keeps talking.

"So I HAVE to tell you, I found the best gynecologist in West Van. Warms the instruments, nice and quick. Great little nail place next door and a Starbucks so I got a nice mani pedi and a latte after the pry and scrape dance. Have you had a pap? You know what they say...even nuns can get cervical cancer Darc..."

At this Darcy bursts into the ramble "Marianne! I am in a restaurant....with a friend...a younger MALE friend!"

Marianne gasps and then giggles "Ohmygod you bitch. And you just let me talk about my vajayay. Sorry...younger male friend..." she keeps giggling and says "Turn me around so I can see him."

Darcy's face is flushed and she sighs and turns her phone "Mari this is Vincent, my neighbour. He's fourteen so behave please."

On the screen is an exact copy of Darcy only with more makeup including dramatic red lipstick and wearing a beige figure hugging woolen dress that she rather falls out of at the bust. Her hair is longer and perfectly styled to fall around her face with a bit of a soft curl at the ends. She waggles her fingers at Vincent from inside the phone.

Vincent was innocently drinking his coffee when talk of vaginas got his COMPLETE attention. He blushes and then goes for another shade of red when he is introduced. "Um ... hi ...." he waves awkwardly back. He starts to actively watch their meals prepared, completely overwhelmed by this woman.

Darcy turns the phone back around and can't help but laugh "Alright that's enough of that. I guess I better buy a turkey soon then. Text me and tell me what ferry you'll all be on so I can meet you OK?"

Marianne yells out "Bye Vincent!" in a singsong voice and then says "OK then. Can you clear me a witty bitty space in your closet?"

Darcy snorts "I own 4 dresses and two coats. That's all that's in there aside from my uniform stuff. There's lots of space. Talk to you later Mari."

Marianne gives another small squeal and says "Ta ta then!"

Darcy slides her phone onto the table and slumps in the booth letting her head roll back onto the back cushion tiredly "I'm so sorry you had to be subjected to that..." she says with an awkward laugh.

Vincent looks back at her when it seems the coast is clear. "That was ... your sister? Is she a twin or ...." he's trying to process. "And they're coming to Alexandra for Thanksgiving? Man, I forgot about that."

Darcy leans her head forward "Yep we grew in the same womb at the same time. Hard to believe I know. I kinda wish my family would have forgotten about it. My parents are pretty harmless though. They retired to Cold Lake Alberta, Dad's last air force post. I think he's a little bored though, He started seeing one of those party plan pyramidy cleaning product lines. It's kind of annoying. My mom reads the news of the weird in tabloids like it’s the real news. Can be a bit of a trip when she starts talking about aliens or the batboy. He died you know...I mean if he ever existed."

 Vincent listens, eventually putting an elbow on the table and leaning his head against his hand, fascinated. "No, it sounds cool." he raises his brows. "So .... Robin is dead?" he asks, more or less deadpan. The food arrives and he takes the elbow off the table. "Dad is going to have a long weekend ...." he looks at his plate which is four inches high with pancakes and sausage patties. He smiles and reaches for the butter..

Darcy smirks "Good one." and sees the food and poises to take a pic of his after they're both on the table and she's thanked the waitress "Those are epic." After she snaps she says "You're welcome to come up and eat turkey with us, even your dad if he'd do it. As you can see my family is NOT shy."

Vincent pauses with the syrup as she snaps a picture. "This is gonna be GREAT!" he predicts and once it is safe he drowns the pile in syrup and cuts it into wedges. "No." he says, curtly to her offer and then sighs. "My plan is to get my father drunk and keep him that way. Or he'll spend the whole thing pounding my face into a wall ... unless this girlfriend is hot enough to warrant another weekend. My Dad kind of .. uses em up pretty fast." he begins to dig into his meal, making steady work, pausing after two wedges to inhale the eggs and down half the orange juice.

Darcy works hard not to visibly react with the horror she feels about how his father treats him. She feels suddenly self conscious for ever complaining about her family at all. They were odd people yes, but never unkind or abusive to anyone. She closes her eyes momentarily and then says resolutely "OK, whatever works. But you know where we are...if you need a little escape." She looks at him with absolute sincerity about that.

Vincent pauses between wedges. "I might .... I mean your sister is kinda scary but .... if I can get Dad passed out I'll come over." he picks up the coffee cup and lifts it. "I could play my lyre for you? Or even pack up Igor and bring him down to play." he offers. "Sort of sing for my supper?"

Darcy smiles now. She barely knew this kid but already wanted to support him and help where she could. "We won't make young sing to be fed but we'd love to hear you play if you want to share music with us. Igor is the harp? Can you lift it alone?"

Vincent smiles. "I'd like to play. And yes. My .. um ... great, great, great ... maybe great grandmother? Might have missed a great ... it was HER harp first and she was in love with some Russian and he bought it for her and died ... probably killed ... probably romantic I guess. ANyway ... he's heavy ... but I can manage to get him up there I think. I'm big for my age." he sits up straighter .. he does look closer to 18 than he actually is. Then he sighs and licks at a pancake. "OK ... I could use some help." he confesses in a near whisper.

Darcy digs into her eggs and mixes them with the hash browns nodding "Modesty is a good thing kid. That is kind of sweet with the name. I'm happy to take an end of Igor to get him up the stairs. Guess they'll never fix the elevator in our building eh?" She starts eating her own breakfast with gusto now too.

Vincent chuckles. "Probably not. I heard the town runs completely on solar power. Imagine THAT?" he settles in and soon is almost done and showing no signs of getting full.

Darcy nods, her mouth still full from her last bite. After chewing and swallowing she sips her coffee and says "I actually think it's pretty cool. I know we have gas and vehicle rations. I feel pretty lucky every time I take the chopper up. I'm a helicopter pilot mostly, though more groundwork with the cops than in the military."

Vincent nods through a couple more wedges. "There's a gas station, but my Dad was saying they rob the average citizen blind with car and parking permits." he rolls his eyes. "Where's to drive in this town? It's so small ... and those golf carts all over the place are so cool. But mostly it seems like walking and biking, which is fine by me." he bites his lip. "Helicopter pilot? WOW! Was the military cool?" he wonders, entering the home stretch.

Darcy is near the end of her breakfast too and thinks on how to answer him "There are cool aspects of it, and not so cool. I like the parts when I feel like we can help people, serve Canada's peacekeeping mission and whatnot. It's a tough life though. The training is a lot of good self discipline...and I love....LOVE to fly. So that part drew me in."

Vincent finishes his meal and nods, sitting back. He's eaten all of it. "I don't know if I'd want to join the military. College, definitely, though. Much as I like it, I can't make a living out of what I love .... "

Darcy pushes her plate away "You might Vincent. People do, and you're great at it. Maybe ask some other musicians how it all happens? Not that I'm not all for the college plan." The waitress comes by to collect the plates and Darcy says "One bill please," and points at herself as to who it should come to.

Vincent grins. "You remind me of my mom." he says softly. "Encouraging and all. Maybe I will. But college too ... fall back plan. Maybe work with kids like me or something." he watches the bill placement. "Thanks. It was great and I'll make it up to you somehow." he promises.

Darcy shakes her head but is inwardly touched that she reminds the kid of his mom "I've been getting free harp concerts in my apartment. No need to make up, Aunt Darcy's treat." she jokes as she takes the machine from the waitress and does debit at the table. As the waitress thanks them and leaves Darcy says "I think whatever you do, you'll do awesome Vincent. I have to run some errands today but we'll hang out again I'm sure soon. And I'm serious about Thanksgiving. It might be a bit of comic relief even."

Vincent nods and then laughs. "Changing your mind about passing me off as your barely legal boyfriend? AUNT Darcy?" he teases and then. "Your sister is ... wow. I now know more about vaginas than I think I am supposed to know at ANY age." he grins. "But have a great day."

Darcy face palms before she gets up to leave with a wave. Her mission to help keep a youth on the right path thwarted by Marianne's gynecological ramblings, Aunt Darcy fail.

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