"We need to talk to Vicki," my employer said, "to tell her the arrangements..." She frowned. "What?" We had just arrived back at the hotel after making our plans with Jason and then with Christy, and I tilted my head to indicate the far corner of the lobby, where Ron was standing, pretending to study the menu on the wall by the dining room entrance.
Jan nodded. Ron had never looked at a menu in her life, as far as I could tell, and in any case this one was three weeks old.
So, my employer went off to hunt up Vicki to let her know that we were leaving in the morning. I walked over to Ron and clapped her on the back. "I'm glad you're still around," I said. "Want to get a piece of pie?"
She shrugged. "Okay."
We went into the nearly-deserted dining room, and I managed to come up with two pieces of pie, and a cup of coffee for me. Ron was as adamantly opposed to coffee as she was to dating.
It was late, and I was tired, and we had to leave early in the morning to get to the bridge and get the car to the train, but it was important to spend some time with Ron at that moment, because it had been her first day of school, and because we were going away.
So, we had a very enjoyable and relaxed time, including sharing some ice cream after Jan joined us. We found out that Ron's first day of school had been "okay," and further investigation had revealed that she had liked history but hadn't liked math, and that she'd only had to beat up two kids. The last was (we managed to discover) because she had been lording it over some of her peers that they had to attend school and she didn't. So, they had made fun of her for becoming a student after all. She bore no scars or bruises that I could see, so I guessed that these altercations had been a bit less violent than she had described.
She was a bit disgruntled that we were going away without her, but we told her we'd be back as soon as we could. Even apart from her school and postal responsibilities, I cringed at how Claudia and Erika, let alone Claudia's family, would have reacted to Ron.