Forever And A Day
There was a knock at the door and Mrs. Emerson shouted,
The door cracked open and Charlotte Coleman walked in, followed by Nate.
His lips pursed and his hands in his pockets.
He gave Joey and I a little nod and then looked away.
"Hi, Mrs. Emerson! It's been a while," Charlotte said.
"Yes, it's very nice to see you, Charlotte. How's college going?"
"Great, thanks. Where's Grace?" she asked.
"She went to get her things. She'll be right in."
The door opened again and this time Grace walked in. She dropped her bag and ran to Nate.
She sobbed, and Nate hugged her back.
"Hey, everything's okay, alright? We're going to be fine," he whispered.
For a second, I was jealous. I wished I was the one hugging Nate.
Jealous of a fourteen year old? I was so pathetic.
Charlotte joined in for a family hug, missing one child.
"Come on, Gracie, let's go home. Mom's waiting for you," Charlotte said.
Grace nodded and picked up her bag.
"Sorry for yelling at you, Mrs. Emerson," she mumbled.
"It's okay, Grace," she said, giving her a motherly smile.
Grace smiled weakly. Nate said to Charlotte, "I'll be down in a sec, okay?"
She nodded and left with Grace.
"I'll be right back," Mrs. Emerson said. She looked stressed. "Kelsey, can you do me a favor and make sure Nate and Joey don't break anything or set anything on fire?" I smiled and nodded.
Nate sunk into the third chair.
"Nate, I-" Joey started.
He shook his head. "I can't do it," he said hoarsely.
"I can't be king. I'm freaking out."
Joey shot me a look like, Told ya.
"Nate, you're going to be fine. Don't worry about it. You're going to make a great king," I told him.
Nate shook his head.
"Chill out. Please? I hate seeing you like this," I pleaded.
"Dude, think about it. You've always wanted this. You wanted to be king your whole life," Joey said.
"You're going to be okay," I said confidently. "I have faith in you."
I walked over and sat on his lap.
"I believe in you, Nate. I love you," I told him softly.
"I love you too," he whispered.
"Go," I said. "Go, do what you need to do. I'll talk to you later."
He nodded and I stood up. I gave him a tight hug.
He forced a smile for me and then left.
"Bye," I whispered, but he was already gone.
Joey was shaking his head.
"This is going to be bad," he said.
"He's okay," I said. I didn't know if I was saying it for Joey's benefit or my own.