Idioms...sayings understood by native speakers part forty eight

The ride back from the rehab was quiet and uncomfortable. Carl concentrated on the road.

Jenny cleared her throat. "I guess that went well."

Carl sighed when as he thought through Larry's response to him stating, "I will make this right."

"Talk is cheap. How are you going to make all of this right?" Larry pointed to his broken legs and to Joey's arms.

"I will."

Carl glanced over at the troubled face of Jenny. "I will fix this. I promise."

Jenny reached over and patted his knee. "Carl, it is not that I don't trust you. I am plain tired of everyone around me getting hurt. I don't want you to be on that list." She removed her hand and crossed her arms, hugging herself and looking out of the window.

They finally pulled up at Rick's house. Taking the now cold pizza, and other groceries out of the car, they were surprised to see Lynn, Rick, and Charlie sitting on the front porch. Charlie, vigorously rocking in his chair, jumped up and waved.

"Charlie, come help us." Jenny called. The boy flew off the porch and got the groceries from Jenny. As they approached the porch, Jenny noted Lynn's face, withdrawn and pale.

"Did something happen?"

Lynn got up quickly. "I will help you get lunch ready." She went into the house, followed by Jenny and Charlie.

Carl came up and sat down beside Rick whose eyebrows were knitted together in quiet concentration.

"Cuz? Something happen?"

Rick looked at Carl.

"We have to be very, very careful, Carl."

"How do you mean?"

Rick pulled out a yellow legal envelop.

"Let's go around back. I need to talk with you."

---

Lynn stretched and rubbed the back of her neck. Jenny noticed bruises along there.

"Lynn, what the hell happened?" She grabbed her hand away and pulled up Lynn's hair with her other hand. "What is this?"

Charlie, oblivious, was pulling things out of the bag and putting them on the table.

"You know how scared Charlie is of thunder?" Lynn spoke quietly.

"Yeah?"

"I got too close." she whispered.

Jenny turned and looked at the child with ungodly strength when ever he was frightened.

"Are you all right?"

"Just sore. If Rick and his friends not been there, I doubt if I would be talking to you."

"Lynn!!!" She paused, swallowing hard. "Maybe Charlie should take some time away from his sister."

"Jenny, it wasn't his fault. I was the one who should have known better."

Jenny took the pizza and put it in the oven to warm. Shaking her head, she looked at Lynn.

"How did Rick react?"

"Perfectly. He took command and everything was all right."

"Good."

"But, I think that it took quite a toll on him. Jenny, something else is happening. I think Rick is in real trouble."

---

Carl looked at the papers. "What? All of this means what?"

"It means that our family has a side business."

"Give me a break."

"No, really. But I think they have got the time line wrong. The thing is we have to prove this and blow this thing wide open."

"Wait, a minute. One of the Charities is the Phoenix Rehab center in Lansing county."

"Yeah, so."

"So, Jenny's brother and friend are there."

"What is it like?"

"I daresay, one could perform surgery on their floors."

"It is that clean?"

"Yeah, no flowers, no personal items, no phones, no outside influences of any kind are allowed in the place." He paused. "I have to get them out of there. They are sitting ducks."

Rick's mind set kicked in, then he chose his words very carefully. "So...we actually have someone on the inside?"'

---

"Come and get it!!!" Jenny yelled from the front door to no one there on the porch.

"Where did they go?"

Two men emerged from the back sliding glass door. "Let's eat out here." Rick stated as he looked up at the light over the kitchen table...wondering just how long that had been there and just how many conversations had been heard.

The girls came out with the food, Charlie trailed behind, looking rather sad.

As they ate, whenever Lynn was out of something, Charlie would get it for her.

"Charlie? Honey, sit down and eat. I can get my own pop."

"No."

"What?"

"Ch...Charlie is really sowwy, Li Li."

"Huh?"

"Charlie did not know he hurt Li Li."

"Charlie, it is okay."

"NO. No. it isn't." Charlie was shaking now. "Charlie loves Li Li."

Rick got up. "Charlie. You know, you are different, right?" As he went to the boy who was starting to cry.

Charlie looked up at Rick. "Charlie is vewy, vewy sowwy. Wick."

"Sorry doesn't make it go away, Charlie."

"What can Charlie do?"

"Charlie, you are a child in a man's body. Do you understand that?"

"Ah, um."

"You are very strong, Charlie. I need you to understand this."

"Um, Charlie is strong?"

Rick sighed. He pulled a chair up beside Charlie. "Here. Take my hand." As he placed his elbow on the table and spread his fingers wide.

Charlie mimicked him. Rick gripped his hand. "Now grip mine just like that."

Lynn spoke up. "Rick, I don't think.."

"That is the problem, Lynn. Sometimes, you don't."

Jenny kept her mouth shut watching... hoping something would connect.

Carl knitted his brows, wondering what had happened to make Charlie apologize like that, and why Rick was acting like this.

"Now watch." Rick pushed Charlie's arm down to the table. "This is called arm wrestling." He paused and looked at the face of the man child. "Did you feel my strength?"

Charlie nodded.

"Now I want you to push my hand down to the table."

Charlie nodded and started to push and push and push. Rick broke a sweat. Charlie concentrated and pushed and pushed. Rick's arm went down.

Rick pulled his arm away and rubbed his shoulder, stretching out his elbow.

"Do you understand what strength is now?"

Charlie nodded.

"Lynn does not have that kind of power, Charlie. You can physically hurt her and not even know it."

"What can Charlie do, Wick? Did Charlie hurt Wick?"

"i will be all right, Charlie. But if it was Lynn, you would have broken her arm."

Charlie nodded. "So when Charlie is scared?"

"Charlie must only hug his bear. His bear will not get hurt. Understand?"

Charlie only nodded.

Rick stood up and ruffled his hair. "Charlie, you are smart in your own way. I need you to figure this out."

Charlie looked up at the man. "Okay."

Rick then took his hand and held it out. "I will trust you to do that, okay?"

Charlie took Rick's hand and shook it.

"Charlie, I need to go for a walk. Want to come with me?" Jenny offered.

"Yep."

Lynn got up and started to clear up the table.

"Lynn, leave that for the boys. I think you need to go with me, too."

Carl watched them leave down the back stairs. "Rick, what the hell was that about?"

"During the storm, Charlie got frightened because of the thunder. He grabbed Lynn and almost smothered her."

"What?"

"Yeah. Lynn tried to warn me. Charlie is boy trapped in a man's body. He reacts like a five year old would when he is afraid, add that to the adrenaline rush, and his inability to contain or adjust to the circumstances, not knowing any limitations, and his strength is over the top."

"You let him win that match, right?" Remembering just how hard Rick could hit.

"Nope." He looked at his sore wrist and arm. "I was giving it everything I had, and Charlie did not even break a sweat."

Carl got up.

"Where are you going?"

"I am getting you some ice."

"Carl, when you go into the kitchen, inspect the light over the table. Come back and tell me what you think."

Carl arched an eyebrow. "What do you mean?"

"I mean, I might have to get my house inspected."

Carl headed into the kitchen, quickly. He studied the light as he stood on a chair. Climbing down, he got a bowl, filled it with ice, and a towel then headed out to the deck.

"I'll be damned."

"Yeah. That is pretty much what I thought."

---

 

Sal finished his after dinner coffee. He watched the delicate hands of Mrs. A.J. Matthews curl her fingers around the cup and take a drink. He smiled as he watched her frown a bit.

"It is Italian coffee. I dare say there probably isn't one alive who would not finish his meal without this. It is very strong. And not for the timid."

The woman smiled a little, taking another sip. "So it is an acquired taste." She drained her cup.

"Mr. Basso." She pulled her fingers up to her chin, interlacing them and leaned on her elbows. "What is the plan? I have told you what I want to do."

"I charge a hundred dollars an hour. For a lawyer, that is cheap, by the way." He paused, "What about your prenuptial agreement?"

She pulled off two diamond earrings and laid them on the table. "These cost 20,000. will you accept them as a down payment? and as for a pre-nup, there wasn't any."

"You have to sign one. I mean, the Matthews' lawyers would not let that go."

"There isn't one."

"I don't understand."

"They made it very clear. No one who marries into the Matthews family gets a divorce."

Sal leaned back into his chair, at that.

"Really?" He looked at the jewelry. "I will keep these as collateral." He picked them up and placed them in his pocket. "When I file, the proverbial poop is going to hit the fan, and the Matthews will react swiftly and without remorse. Do you understand?"

"Yes."

"Then I will file tomorrow asking for Judge Smith. As far as I know he is the only one that is not on the Matthews' dole. Come by my office at ten am tomorrow. I will need you to sign some papers. We will talk about where you will stay. Don't bring anything with you. Make it like you are going to the hair dressers or something, okay?"

"So come wearing just the clothes on my back?"

"Yes, Mrs. Matthews. But I will ask you one more thing, are you prepared to shop at Walmart for the rest of your life?"

"No problem, as long as it is what I choose to wear with the money I make."

Sal nodded, wondering if this woman had truly worked a day in her life. He flipped to another page of his legal pad. He wrote out a series of directions. He handed them to her.

"Follow these explicitly. Do not deviate from them...just in case."

"In case of what?"

"In case you are being followed." Getting up quickly and putting his hat on with his collar up. "Good day." Sal went out the back of the kitchen with his brief case in his hand. He stood behind the building as a chauffeur type came out escorting the lady.

"Simon, what is the meaning of this?" She paused before entering the limousine. "I only wanted to get some good Italian food."

Simon remained quiet, holding the door, then added, "Madame, please. Your husband wants to see you." She sighed and gracefully got in the car.

Sal crossed himself and said a little prayer for Saint Michael to protect his client right now.

---

Stacy drew the tubes as ordered. Then did the buccal swabs, wondering how throat culture orders could be done like this, she looked up at Mr. Wilson. "Thank you. I know all these tests are painful."

"No, problem, but, um, Miss Stacy? Where did Miguel and Mike go?"

Joey was gripping the bed as the other nurse was drawing labs from his foot.

"Well, I"

The preceptor spoke up. "You know about the HIPPA law, right, Mr. Wilson?"

"Oh, that privacy thing?"

"Yes. We are not allowed to discuss any personal information here unless that person has given permission."

Stacy looked at her. She glanced back at Mr. Johnson. "I wasn't asking about their health information, I just wanted to know if they were okay? Are they coming back?"

"I really don't know. People choose to come and go as they please here." And with that the nurse brandished a bandaid on Joey's left foot and left. She stopped at the door and looked back.

"Stacy, are you coming? These specimens are time sensitive."

Stacy nodded and placed the bandaid on the man's arm. Larry reached out and touched her hand.

"I know you are new here, but this is a wierd place." He whispered.

"I know." She answered back,  picking up the blood. Throwing away the used supplies in the container by the door, she followed her preceptor. This place is wierd, she thought.

 

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