Howdy! It’s Saturday! Enjoy your weekly dose of Children of Two Worlds while I’m off to a local library picnic to do a reading and book signing of The Rise of Aredor series and then study for my test on Monday! Wish me luck for the reading! I’m a bit nervous…
Chapter 2, Part 1
There was a collective groan. They all recognized that knock. It was the landlord, not so fondly nick-named Mr. Shady. Twenty years ago experts were predicting the next great age. Instead, the world’s first planetary colony had failed on newly discovered Novum and another recession had hit. America was finally limping out of the last stages of the recession but landlords like Shady were still taking advantage of the desperate. It wasn’t uncommon to still see people on the streets, especially kids trying to make it, or communal apartments, but Shady had never trusted them and went out of his way to try and kick them out.
Cassie hurried to the door. The last time Sam had talked to Shady hadn’t gone well, hence the scorch mark on the wall. They couldn’t risk being discovered. She jerked the door open.
“What?” she growled. Shady ran a hand over his slick hair.
“Cassie! I’ve had another complaint about the noise level here.”
Yeah, right! They were the quietest tenants there.
“Reeally?” Cassie drew it out while giving him her best glare. The one good thing about Shady was that he didn’t really have much in the way of a backbone.
“Yeah, I told them they must be mistaken,” he changed directions.
“Must be. Anything else?”
She shouldn’t have asked. Shady’s eyes flared greedily.
“Yeah, I’m making the rounds. Rent’s going to have to go up again.”
“What? It just went up two weeks ago!” They could barely afford the current price let alone whatever exorbitant amount he was about to add on.
“That’s the way of the world, Cassie,” he shook his head almost sadly. Her wings were in danger of helping propel her fist forward into his greasy face and she could practically smell the burning behind her. She drew herself up to her not-so-significant height.
“I’m going to need to see that in writing!” she snapped before slamming the door in his face. She leaned her back against the door. They had all heard and all knew what it meant. Sam was glowing and not in a happy way. Abigail’s mouth was moving as she silently ran outcomes through her head. Mariah shifted from one foot to the other as she did whenever she got nervous about something and Caleb just looked deflated.
“Well, Abby?” Sam sighed.
“We get kicked out in all but one probability,” she clutched her elephant tighter. “And I don’t think that one way is legal.”
With that cheering thought now on their minds, they forgot about their meeting. Dinner was prepared in silence. Cassie led the prayer and there was a lackluster Amen. Please get us through this! She prayed.
When they went to bed, Cassie lay on her mattress listening to the fan work overtime to circulate air through the warm apartment. Saving money meant cutting out some utilities like air conditioning. She often doubted the wisdom of trying to live without cold air in the heat of Texas summers. There has to be an easier way, she thought. She reached out and grabbed the crucifix that hung on the wall. That was one thing that she had taken from home. That and the cross necklace formed from old shell casings that her dad had made for her years ago. It was a reminder of her parents and better times and more importantly, where to place her trust at all times. She was eventually lulled to sleep by Mariah’s petite snores and her own continuous prayers.