apple tree

“And those are not from the market?” His baffled look is more amusing than it should have been and I cant my head, watching him as he takes one of the apples and brings it up to his nose to breathe in its scent. I snicker and shake my head. “They smell so, so, I don’t know, pure!”

At times it’s easy to forget he’s so much older than me. He still acts like a kid on some days and it makes it easier to adapt to knowing him and Alexis both. He’s friendly and while I wasn’t so sure about what life would have been like at the beginning with him about, especially during that week he stayed with us, he’s proven that he’s a wonderful sort of friend and he makes life worth living a little more. Quentin does most of that work himself by just being by myself but Eoghan helps. Alexis helps too in his own way.

“No, they’re not from the market. Just like the golden raspberries and those are for Alexis, he is busy?” He must be, else I assume I would have seen him peeking out of that one room I know is his working place when I first came in.

Eoghan nods and laughs softly. “Yeah, he’s working on a commission piece but I think if he knew what you brought in for us, he’d have been out of here in a heartbeat.”

Well, I practically plucked all of the ready ones out of the plant. I still have as many growing and the basket is huge. It was heavy to carry. I kept the red ones at home, those are mine and I’ll be making jam out of part of them and more than likely some pie and ice cream with the rest. “The apples came from the same place. I have a little tree and it was heavy with fruit so I brought you guys some and kept some for home. In the next few months I’ll be overrun by more vegetable than I know what to do with so I might be unloading some of those on you guys too if that’s all right.”

By the pleased look on his face I was ready to assume it was more than all right. It was fantastic. Who wouldn’t want fresh, home grown fruits and vegetables, really? “I can even help you carry some of them over here if you want, you can just call and I’ll be over if I’m not busy with something. Which I’m not really that often these days so it’s all good!”

Well, if they were working on selling the building again and setting up to fix and renovate the warehouse next to ours, I suppose that was an understatement but he seems to like to keep busy and I don’t fault him for that, I would too if it kept the voices out. I don’t know much about his gift but from what Alexis said, the busier or more focused Eoghan is, the better it is for him.

I can hear the door to that office I’ve not seen and I doubt I will click open. There comes Alexis looking out of the room and he smiles warmly when he spots us both by the table. I brighten up and grin up at him. “I brought you some raspberries!”

Almost ten pounds of raspberries really. His eyes grow wide and he walks over. Like a kid in a candy store, oh goodness he looks so much younger just now, it’s amazing what a little kindness can do for someone! I can’t help the laugh as he literally grabs a handful, grins and wanders right on back to his work room. That’s more than fine by me, at least I know he’s aware of their presence and I doubt they’ll last long.

Eoghan snickers and shakes his head. “He just loves the stuff. I don’t know I think I’ll stick to the apples. Want me to walk you back over? It’s cold out.”

“No, I’m all right. I have my coat and it’s just a few paces off. I’ll have to walk longer when you guys move into the other building.” Just barely but still. “I’ll see you guys soon.”

I do hug him and kiss his cheek, it just seems natural now and I let myself out.

I barely took half of the apples out of that tree and it still is ready to spring some more. It was overloaded with flowers just a couple of weeks back. It’s hard to believe how quickly everything is growing but maybe it has to do with my gift. I like thinking about it that way, it seems less, well, evil. ‘Demons’ it makes it seem all so bad. When people talk about demons they talk about how they’re evil and dangerous and so many things I don’t know where to start. I don’t even want to think about it.

I hang my coat on the portmanteau once I’m inside and rub my hands together for warmth. It really is getting colder out there. Not yet winter but we’ll be there before too long. I flop down in front of the fireplace for a few moments to finish warming up my bones and I tell myself I’ll have to put on some gloves next time else I want my poor and precious little fingers to fall off.

Once I’m sufficiently warm, I wander in search of Quentin and I find him floating peacefully in the pool. I admit I haven’t been in that water in quite some time and it is tempting. Still I know I can’t yet, I have a few more things to check upstairs in the gardens and it might take up another hour or two of my time.

At times it feels like a chore but once I make it up there and the scent of nature and life hits me, it’s like I forget about how much work it all is and I just fall into the habit of it. How I check the water levels, cut off dead bits and trim too long ones, feed them a bit, add some dirt here and there. It’s all worth it though. Most of our recent fruits have come from up here and soon nearly all of our vegetables will too.

It took three hours to finish everything up and four baskets later. One of raspberry, one of mixed strawberries and blueberries and one more of apples. I’m more than pleased to head back downstairs, to head to the pool are and drop my clothes by the wall before doing a quick rinse up under the shower head. Quentin is still floating on his little air mattress and I have to assume he’s asleep.

I know I’ll ache in the morning but for now it’s still bearable. I slip into the water and slowly waddle my way over. I have to be careful in how I pull myself over to his side to not capsize the floater and send both of us under. He startles just slightly when I ease up, warm and slightly dripping against him. He merely pulls me closer and settles again. I drop my head to his shoulder and close my eyes, letting my toes sit in the water. I can rest here for a while more, it’ll be just fine.


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