Sonja just shook her head slightly. "He's still the same," she said sadly.
Rachel nodded quickly, attempting to squelch the tears that seemed to be multiplying. "Okay, Daddy," she tried to promise.
Tomas chuckled and pulled his daughter into his arms. "You always were my over-emotional girl. You just feel things so deeply," he said, stroking her hair.
Rachel closed her eyes, content to be held in her dad's arms.
Why did he have to be so sick?
Maritza headed to the beach in hopes of finding another specimen. Besides, Mittens had never seen the ocean before!
Gage was at her house.
She stared a moment before pulling it together and inviting him in. Best to get this over with. She wanted him out of her life. Period.
His gaze shifted to the canvas. "Is that it?" he asked with annoyance.
"Good," Gage said. "I'm going to use that trash for target practice!"
Rachel gaped at her sister. "What do you think I'm here for?" she snapped. "I came to see Daddy."
"Well, some people live here and take care of him every day, not just when it suits them!" she said snidely.
Gage was on his way out when the sound of a baby cry filtered down the stairs. He froze in his tracks and dropped the canvas to the floor.
Haley pointed to the canvas on the floor, "Just take the painting and go!" she told him.
Gage kicked at the painting. "Do you think I care about some dumb painting?" he demanded angrily. "I want to know about my child!"
Gage turned in a circle and swore loudly and viciously, then turning back towards Haley. "You've screwed my life up!" he yelled at her. "What am I going to tell my wife?!" he demanded.
She watched him stoop down and quickly pick up the painting, stalking from the house.
She hoped this was the last she ever saw of him!
Yesenia Baker-Black squirmed in her lounge-chair. "Will it bite?" she asked, pulling her legs up from the edge of the seat.
"Oh no," Maritza assured her. "It's just an extremely rare lizard that I'd like to catch to study!"
Dropping to her knee, she petted the cat's head. "Come on, Mittens. Let's go home," she said dejectedly. She'd hoped to be so much further along now in her studies!
"I grabbed you a plate, Daddy," Keely announced, flashing a triumphant look towards Rachel.
Haley shook her head. "No, she called earlier in the day and said that her dad was hanging in there."
"So that's good news, right?" Maritza asked matter-of-factly.
Haley nibbled her bottom lip, "I hope so!"