When Spencer got home after getting Kate’s bags packed in his trunk, he finished his last minute packing, adding his cell phone charger, his electric razor, and some of his mail he hadn’t taken care of yet. He checked his email one last time and responded to his messages, then shut the machine off and unplugged it. Having lost more than one phone during electrical storms while away from home, he was now in the habit of unplugging all his electronics before he left on trips, though he no longer bothered paying for a landline.
Then he stretched out on his sofa and channel surfed but didn’t really pay attention to what played on the square box. His thoughts were on Kate and how she would handle the instant motherhood thing. Spencer was here to help, but didn’t know how much she would accept from him or if she expected it, since he had known about Sarah for a while.
He had wanted to tell her several times, but thought he should honor John’s wish since he was the one in love with Kate, even though John felt he could never say so. He wished now that he would have pressed John harder to tell Kate about Sarah and then things would have been a lot different and less stressful. Sighing, Spencer turned the television off after watching a James Bond rerun, unplugged it and turned in after setting his alarm clock.
The next morning Spencer showered and arrived at Kate’s by quarter to seven. The day promised to be sunny and warm, perfect for a trip. It would be a long day-and-a-half drive though. Spencer didn’t have to knock on Kate’s door as she had been ready and waiting. She held her purse and at her feet sat a handbag with magazines and a book.
Spencer could hear Buttons whining from inside. “Is he okay?” Spencer gestured toward the noise. Kate looked back toward the living room. “Yeah, he’ll get used to it. He’s in his kennel until Jen comes at lunch to play with him. She’s actually able to stay here and watch him while we’re gone.”
“That’s good. Are you ready?”
“As ready as I’m going to be.” Spencer reached for her bag and asked if she wanted it up front.
“Please.” Kate locked her apartment door and they were on their way. After settling in the car, Kate asked if he wanted her to drive any.
“Yeah, if you don’t mind. I start to get sleepy after about five or six hours, so that would be great.”
“Sure. Mind if I read for a while?”
“Go for it. What are you reading?” Spencer asked, eying her book. He adjusted the air flow before heading toward Interstate 64.
“The latest John Grisham.”
“I might have to borrow it when you’re done.”
“Sure. I bought it at Barnes & Noble last week. I had to get something suspenseful and intriguing to help get my mind off of John. Haven’t had much time to read it though.”
Spencer nodded. “I understand, sorry.”
“You can stop apologizing now. It’s not your fault. Totally.”
“Thanks for understanding. As a matter of fact, I came close several times to spilling the news, but I just couldn’t do that to John with him so far away and in harm’s way. But I wanted to. I really did.” He swallowed quickly, forcing a lump down his throat.
Kate put her hand on his arm. “I know. I realized that last night when I couldn’t sleep. I thought about it, and figured that was what had been on your mind.” She looked out her window for a minute before continuing. “I forgive you. John on the other hand, not so much.”
“You need to, you know.”
“I know; I’m just not ready. I’m still too angry.”
Spencer nodded, though he didn’t agree. He drove in silence for a few minutes before asking her, “You warm, cool, just right?” He switched lanes to pass a semi.
“I’m fine. I like it a little cool.”
He waited before getting in front of the semi before speaking again. “By the way,” he gestured to the back seat with his right thumb, “I have snacks and drinks in the cooler, help yourself.”
“Thanks.” Kate settled in with her book and occasionally looked out the window at the flashing scenery. She never felt like she was getting anywhere until after she passed St. Charles and now they were just crossing through it.
Until next time,