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Date Posted: 19:26:29 04/22/05 Fri
Author: Diane
Subject: Okay - Chapter 9
In reply to: Diane 's message, "Okay" on 11:00:56 04/04/05 Mon

It was February when Michael and Adam reached Montreal. They had made the most of their leisurely drive through New England, getting to know each other again, catching up on what they had missed, and solidifying their new personae.

The first thing they did when they moved into their new home was get a cat. Michael had always felt guilty for making Nikita give up her kitten, and he didn’t want a dog to remind him of Elena and Watson. The cat Adam chose from the shelter was a female tabby, spayed, about two years old. Adam wanted to name her Nikita, but bit his tongue before the words came out. Thinking of one of his favorite books, he asked his father innocently, “Can we name her Madeline?”

“No!” was his father’s gruff and immediate response. Adam was visible startled, and nearly dropped the cat. “I’m sorry, Adam,” said Michael, immediately contrite. He whispered softly in Adam’s ear “’Madeline’ was one of the bad guys.”

Adam nodded maturely. He understood completely. “Um, Michelle?” he tried again.

Michael laughed. “But that’s my, remember? People might call out ‘Michelle,’ and I wouldn’t know if they wanted me or the cat!”

“Oh, yeah,” said Adam, blushing at his blunder. He thought hard. “Josephine?” he asked hopefully.

I am in Hell, thought Michael. He took a deep breath and asked Adam, “Who was the prettiest girl in your whole school?” He had wanted to avoid any ties to France, but they weren’t getting anywhere this way.

Adam’s cheeks were tinged with pink as he scraped the toe of one boot against the tile floor of the shelter. He muttered something into the cat’s fur, but Michael couldn’t understand him. “Quoi?” He asked Adam to repeat himself. Adam’s cheeks grew pinker.

“Mirabela,” he muttered quickly.

“That’s a beautiful name,” agreed Michael, breathing a sigh of relief. “Shall we call her ‘Mirabela,’ or just ‘Bela?’”

“’Mira’” Adam responded quickly. “Her name is ‘Mira.’”

* * *

Michael had moved Adam’s birthday up by six months, so he would be entering Grade 2, not Grade 1, of the private and exclusive boys’ school that Michael had selected. The only area where Adam was behind was penmanship, and he could work on that at home with Michael. He was also trying to accustom Adam to the sound and nuances of Québécois French, which was quite different from the Parisian French in which he was fluent. Adam spent the first two weeks at home watching television all day. His cover story that he had been living in France would excuse his accent, but Michael wanted to make sure he could understand his teachers and classmates.

Michael couldn’t use any of his old Section contacts to maintain his old cover as an art dealer, so he was going to depend on his actual talent as an artist to support his small family. He was actually a very talented painter and sculptor, and the name ‘Samuelson’ opened many doors in the large Jewish art community.

* * *

The first day of school, Michael waited with all the other mothers, fathers, and drivers here to pick up their children at 3:15. The bell finally rang, the front doors open and the school regurgitated what seemed like hundreds of thousands of screaming kids, although Michael knew there were less than 300 hundred students in the entire school. He looked anxiously for Adam, but all the boys had the same uniform: navy cap, navy blazer with the school crest, white dress shirt with a charcoal gray tie, navy knee-length shorts, gray knee socks, and black shoes. Even his backpack had to be either dark gray or black (Adam’s was black), but Michael thought he could at least pick him out by his hockey stick.

When all the other cars had left, and Michael was beyond starting to panic, Adam came walking slowly out of the building, dragging his backpack and hockey stick behind him. He threw his things in the back seat, buckled his seatbelt, and faced forward, ready to go home. Clearly, he was not in the mood to talk.

Michael didn’t say a word as they pulled out of the parking lot, but when he pulled in the Dairy Queen, he asked Adam, “Do you have too much work in there to do, or do you have time for me to eat a marshmallow sundae? I’ve been craving one all day.”

For an answer, Adam unbuckled his seatbelt and held the door for his father as they walked up to the service counter together. “Let’s see,” Michael said, pretending to peruse the menu, “I’ll have one marshmallow sundae—“ Adam was tugging on his sleeve—a pleading look in his eyes. “Make that *two* marshmallow sundaes with chocolate ice cream, one coffee, and one small Pepsi.” Adam looked up at his father, who was wearing his ‘do-not-argue-with-me-on-this-one,-son’ face, and left to collect their spoons, straws, and napkins. He knew his dad liked his coffee black. He had tasted it once. Blech! Mommy put three sugars and three creams in hers, and it still tasted nasty. He preferred tea, like Nikita. But Nikita didn’t exist anymore. That was old life. This was new.

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[> [> Re: Okay - Chapter 9 -- Shanola, 20:31:36 04/29/05 Fri

I'm not sure I can comment on the chapters you've got about Michael and Adam. You've painted them in a way that is very foreign to me. I think I shall refrain from commenting on those chapters, until I know more about where the story is headed.

Do you have the rest finished?

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[> [> [> Re: Okay - Chapter 9 -- Diane, 21:18:33 04/29/05 Fri

I'm still writing, but I can post the next few chapters.

Re Adam: We never really saw him after age four, and only knew that he was a precocious, happy kid who loved his dad. The Michael I'm wtiting in the beginning is more like the one Adam would have known as Daddy, not the Section Michael.

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[> [> [> [> Hey, Diane. -- Shanola, 18:50:21 05/01/05 Sun

I'm heading out of town this weekend. I don't know that I'll be able to beta read until after I get back! I'm sorry. I'm just really pressed for time!

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[> [> [> [> [> That's cool! -- Diane, 19:57:26 05/01/05 Sun

Whenever it's convenient for you. I'll be here, :)

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