(Last week: Chartan tells the limo service owner he wants to drive more. Brazil frolics with his wife and misses the deadline to call Riley.)
“Are we going to have a great marriage?” asked Gina without looking at Chartan. They were sitting up in bed in pajamas. Jake was in a bassinette pressed against Gina’s side of the bed.
“Do you care to elaborate?” asked Gina with a smile.
Chartan, his eyes watering, turned to his wife. He was tired and he didn’t want his wife to know that he was thinking about his driving assignment the next day.
“We already have a great marriage.”
Gina ran her finger down Chartan’s nose. “Do you miss teaching your class?”
“A little. But it was time for… a great marriage.”
“I agree, it was time.”
Brazil pushed himself off the bed. He stood up, closed his eyes and listened to his wife’s uneven breathing behind him. He had been meaning to ask her if she had health problems—after all, they knew very little about each other. He could do that, or else think about the ramifications of not calling Riley.
He turned around. “Julie, are you okay?”
“What do you mean, okay?” She was sitting on the bed without any clothes on.
“Your health. We’re not young anymore. I’ve got a rusty body. How is your health?”
“Funny time to ask.”
“You never ask anything about me. Maybe that’s too much to expect.”
Tears rolled down Julie’s cheek. Brazil took some tissues from a box on the nightstand. He was going to hand the tissues to her, but at the last second, he sat on the bed and dabbed her cheeks.
“I’ve never seen you cry,” he said.
“Maybe it was time.”
(The Adventures of Chartan will resume in two weeks.)