Living Green Tip #13: It is common knowledge that exercise is important to human beings. Walking with family, friends, or neighbors can be a social outlet!
"Sure, what's up?" Rachel asked, glancing up towards her friend. Uh oh, serious frowning meant Haley was tense about something.
"Come on!" Rio said, jumping to his feet and toddling at break-neck speed towards the blocks.
"Come on Haley! Just spit it out!" Rachel urged.
In for a penny, in for a pound. "You guys were flirting last night!" Haley argued.
Rachel snorted, "So?!" Adding with her hand on her hip, "And what? So you have to protect your brother from Rachel-the-heartbreak?"
"It's not like that, Rachel! I just don't want you two to hurt..." Haley could tell she had hurt her friend's feelings.
Rachel waved her hand dismissively, "Yeah, whatever, Haley. Don't worry. Your baby brother is safe from me!" She turned and her heel and left the room.
Haley sighed. That hadn't gone well...
Rachel nodded, glancing down at Rio, who was toddling along beside them. "This is so exciting, isn't it Rio!"
Maritza glanced between Haley and Rachel and shifted uncomfortably. They seemed really upset with each other and she didn't have a clue why!
Maritza snuck a glance at Haley. "Sure," she said. "If..."
"Thanks!" Rachel interrupted, hurrying off before Maritza could finish her sentence.
"I'll catch up with you soon!" she called out over her shoulder.
The tattooist looked her up and down, "Girl, anything would look good on you," he drawled.
Haley shook her head. "I bet that laundromat uses so much water! It's better for the environment to wash at home and use the clothes line!"
Maritza nodded. "I love the smell of freshly line-dried clothes!"
Maritza shook her head, "No! There's so much family history up there! You can't get rid of any of it!"
"I'm ti-erd," Rio complained, steps slowing.
"It has been a lot of walking," Haley said. "Maybe we should take a break."
Maritza nodded. "What do you want to do? Should we head home?"
Haley glanced up at the library. "Maybe they have a toddler-time at the library," she suggested.
"You don't have to go if you don't want to," Haley said. "I can handle the kiddos. We can meet up at the bistro."
"Are you sure?" Maritza asked, setting Rio on his feet, already eagerly looking forward to heading to the park to look for any wildlife. Too bad Mittens wasn't with her!
"Come on, Auntie Haley!" Rio said happily, full of energy now that fun was within sight.
"Slow down!" Haley said, "Come hold my hand!"
Shaye grabbed something that looked surprisingly like a gun and Rachel swallowed thickly, pulling back slightly. "Are you sure this only going to hurt a little bit?" she asked hesitantly.
He smiled down at the newbie. "Promise. Just a little pinch!" he said, adding, "But it's going to look hot!" His gaze strayed to her cleavage.
Maritza was just turning to leave when a loud bell started shrilly ringing. She jumped in surprise, her heart pulsing a mile a minute.
"Auntie Ritza!" Rio called out happily, running up to her and throwing himself into her arms.
Maritza laughed, pulling Rio up onto her lap. "Did you have fun at the library?" she asked.
Rio nodded his head, laying his head on her shoulder. "Uh huh," he said. "We read Johnny Sp-ocket!" he chatted happily, telling her all about the books he'd read with Haley.
Maritza met Haley's eyes and blew out a nervous breath. "I went to the fire station..."
Haley brightened, "Oh! You did?!" she squealed. "Did you talk to him?!" she asked.
Maritza chuckled, "Kind of," she said, telling about how the alarm went off right as she'd entered and how Daryl had been called away.
Maritza and Haley glanced up in surprise. They hadn't even heard her approaching.
Haley's mouth dropped open.
Rio laughed, pointing at his mother's belly, "I see your belly!"
Rachel laughed at their reaction. Priceless! She preceded her roomies into the bistro, calling out, "Come on guys, I'm hungry!"
Haley had never been so embarrassed in her life! Everyone at the nearby tables had been glancing over at them and whispering. She hated being the center of attention! "Let's just go home," she said.