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The Case of Lost Essentials

Monday.  The worst day of the week.  Followed by Tuesday, the second worst day of the week.  Why couldn’t it be Saturday?  By far the best day of the week.  Lex flung open the back door to Geni’s house without knocking and strode into the kitchen.

    “I hate Mondays!”

    Geni looked up from the pot on the stove and cocked an eyebrow, “You’re going to complain Lex?  I’ve spent all day with three kids under the age of 9 without any breaks.  They managed to trash the family room, their bedrooms, break my grandmother's lamp, and spill the tub of cat food down the stairs.  I haven’t had a shower since Saturday and I’m trying to make dinner with two kids clinging to my legs.  So what could you possible have to complain about?”

Lex glanced around the kitchen that looked as if a tornado had passed through it then at Geni with her dirty auburn hair hanging limp and frayed around her face.  Sure enough, Geni’s two youngest were grabbing at her legs nearly pulling her sweats right off.  Okay, only one was pulling on her sweats, the baby was too young to really get a handful and pull hard.

“Nothing really,” she said, “I just wanted to complain that it was Monday and I hate Mondays.”

Rolling her eyes, Geni returned to her boiling pot on the stove.

“What brings you here Lex?” She said as Lex picked up and straddled one of the table chairs.

“Can’t I just come by and visit my best friend without any ulterior motive?”

“No.”

“Ha!  You’re too funny Geni, but I really did come over just to see you.  It’s my day off, I did laundry, cleaned my house, walked Link and now--”

“And now you are bored.  I get it Lex.  You only think of me when you have nothing else to do.”  She said while she wiped her hands on a towel, “Well, since you are here you can help me by getting the kids to clean this room and set the table.”

“Ugh!  I didn’t come over to clean your house, BUT I will do it anyway cause I love you.”  Lex stood up and gathered the kids into the kitchen to clean up for dinner.  It was a slow, tedious process since Jocelyn was 8, Trevor was 6, and Brandy was only 7 months old.  It did take up the time Geni needed to finish cooking the spaghetti.  

Lex smiled as she watched her best friend from grade school pick Brandy up and gently rock her on her hip as she took out dishes from the cupboard.  Things had been hard on Geni since Todd passed away a little over a year ago and then she found out she was pregnant with Brandy.  Lex had moved in with Geni when Todd passed away to care for the kids while Geni tried to pull herself together.  Learning she was preganant on top of losing Todd had almost pushed her over.  Lex wasn’t sure she’d pull it through, but somehow she did.  That didn’t mean Geni didn’t have her bad days and give Lex a scare every now and then with thoughts of a relapse.  Those moments that looked as if Geni was falling into her dark days had Lex thinking that maybe she should move back in with the family.  She’d only moved out a few months ago, and moving back wouldn’t be too hard for her.  It might be hard on her dog Link.  And Geni’s cat.

Snap.

Lex blinked as Geni pulled her hand back from snapping in her face.  She looked around to see the table set and everyone staring at her as if they’d been trying to get her attention for a while.

“You awake in there?”

“Yeah, just thinking about work.”  Lex smiled and dished some spaghetti onto her plate then took a big bite. Yum!  Geni was an amazing cook.

Brrrring.  Brrring.

“I swear everyone knows when I’m about to eat and calls right at that moment.”  Geni laid her fork down, stood and answered her cell as she left the room.

“How was school today?”

“Did you know that Mandy’s dad’s store was broken into?” Jocelyn asked.

“Where did you hear this sweetie?”

“Mandy told me at school today.  She said all the windows are broken and everything is gone.”

    Geni spoke from the doorway, “That was Detective Newman, there was a break in at Essential for Life and he’s asking for help.”

Lex sighed and leaned back in her chair, “We haven’t done that since--.”

“I know,” Geni glanced down at the floor and then around the the table at her kids, “Let’s talk about this after dinner, okay.”

Lex nodded and said to the little faces staring at her and Geni, “I bet the cops are searching for the bad guy right now.”

“Will they shoot them?”

“I don’t know Trevor.  Maybe if they shoot at the cops first.  But the police will try to catch the bad guys without shooting them.”

“That sounds boring.”

She laughed and ruffled his hair, “It would sound boring to any six year old boy.”

Geni sat down and twisted her food around the fork distractedly.

    “What’s going to happen now mom?”

    “Huh? Oh, I don’t know Joce.”

    “Someone’s going to get shot.”

    “Trevor!”

    “What?  Lex said so.”

    “Lex!”

    “Hahaha!  I had nothing to do with it--it’s all him.”

“Alright that’s enough talk about break ins, bad guys and people getting shot.  Eat your dinner and then it’s bath time.”

“Even for me?”

“Lex!”

After dinner was cleaned up, the kids had been bathed and were tucked into bed, Lex and Geni sat in the living room sipping on cups of hot chocolate.  Lex missed this part of living with Geni.  Living alone had its perks, but sitting and drinking hot chocolate with the one person who knew you better than anyone else did, could never be topped.

“You know, we could find out who robbed the White’s store.”

“Really Geni, you want to try and find out who did it?  Weren’t you the one complaining earlier about how busy your day was with three kids under the age of 9?”

She waved Lex’s remarks away, “I know, but Jocelyn and Trevor are in school and Todd’s mom has been saying she wants to spend more time with Brandy.  That will give us about 6 hours to help the detectives.”

“We haven’t been consultants on a case since Todd passed. Geni,” Lex rested her hand on Geni’s knee, “are you sure you’re up to it?”

“I don’t know Lex, but I need to get out of this house and do something.  Since Todd,” she cleared her throat, “since he passed, I have locked myself away from the world and I need this Lex.”

“Alright.  Call Newman and let him know we’ll help him with this case, but just this one case Geni.  I have a full time job now and I’ll need to speak to my boss about changing my hours around.”

She nodded vigorously, “I Promise, just this once.  Thanks Lex.  I’m glad I already told the Detective we’d help him with the case.”

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