Teasers & Deleted Scenes
The voice was familiar. It wasn't one that had ever before called him "Steve."
"Hey," Reyes said. "How are you?"
"Good." A strained laugh. "Well. As good as I could be. Warm and fed and usefully employed. Lonely. Sad."
"Me too," said Reyes. "You saw Duke's book hit the Times list?"
"I saw he finally got his Pulitzer."
Posthumously. His sister Sal had collected it for him, and given a thoroughly moving speech. Eloquence was not a limited resource in that family.
"Better," Reyes said, settling back into his chair. Autumn was on the carpet, building something improbable with her space Legos. He felt a knot ease inside. "Nikki's got a boyfriend."
"Nice guy. Two kids. Hikes. They seem to get on. Danny's back at work as a civilian consultant. He and Gray tied the knot."
"In Rhode Island?"
"I baked them a cake. Your recipe."
"Good." The familiar voice caught. Snagged on gratitude or grief. Both. Other things too. "Good, that's good."
"Nikki says the job is easier now."
A sigh. "That's why I did it."
"Casey says so too. Suddenly, all sorts of people are coming forward. Most of it's nonsense. Some is useful."
"Not bad. Night school. Suze is doing well too."
Another sigh. "Thank you."
"I knew you wouldn't ask."
A long hesitation, and then: "Nikki's not mad, is she?"
Reyes laughed softly into the phone. "Not that we talked about this, of course--but if we had, I'm confident she would have told me to tell you to stay safe, stay hid, be a smart, quick bunny, and if you ever need anything, you know where your old friends live."
"Did you just say... 'smart, quick bunny'?"
"Well, that's what she would have said. I'm pretty sure of it."
"Yeah," said the soft voice on the other end of the phone. "Me too. I'm pretty sure of that too."