“I am so much trouble.”
“Trouble? No. You would give up your air. What do you need?”
“If I could trouble Janice for a small piece of that Saran wrap she put on my take-home piece of cake, that would be…” I stopped talking. People stared at me again.
“You want a doggy bag,” Janice said.
“I don’t know what that is,” I said.
“It’s something that you request in a restaurant when you want to take the left-overs home,” Billy said. I nodded.
“I just had an epiphany!” Evangela said. “I’ve figured it out.”
“About what?” Billy asked.
“Ronni’s home life, concerning her dinner table. I think her foster siblings are playing her.”
“I’m right here,” I said leaning around Billy.
“Apologies,” Evangela said. “Your siblings are finishing their meals ahead of you.”
“They’re getting seconds off your plate,” Monique said.
I smiled at Billy, then at Janice. She got up and got me that piece of Saran wrap and covered my paper plate. Billy turned to Evangela.
“You’re missing the point. It’s more important to Ronni that they walk away from the table with full bellies,” Billy told her. I was glad Billy did that. I did not want to.
“I am very sorry, Ronni. I did not give you credit. Of course, you already knew that. You are smarter than people think.” Evangela said. “And do you want to know something else?”
“What?” I asked.
She pointed at me, then Billy and back. “You two click. You are in each other’s minds. You communicate with glances. I never had that with Billy.”
“Neither did I,” Monique said, “and honestly, I’m burning up with jealousy. You two have something special, something deep that I can’t describe, but it’s there.”
I leaned over and rubbed shoulders with Billy.
“Do you want to know what is very special to me and very surprising?” I asked.
“Yes,” Evangela said.
“You came tonight. You came, even though there are gallons of bad blood between both of you and Billy. To me, that makes you giants of emotional control, two girls I want to be. I have fallen in love with you both…a little,” I said and laughed.
We got up. Hugs and cheek kissing followed.
Billy and Janice got up and went down the hall. We sat down and talked about that day in the cafeteria when Billy slammed down his tray. Billy had said that we could not talk to Linda Tibbits.
“You are about to find out why,” Monique said.
“Did you know?”
“Not at that time,” she said. “Linda came to us and explained it all. She said not to tell you. It was a surprise.”
Billy and Janice came in and Janice was carrying what looked like a very small suitcase. She put the little suitcase in front of me on its end and unlatched it. She opened it. The two halves of the front opened and swung out. There was a mirror in the middle and each side had little shelves with little make up bottles in different shades and two different hair brushes with their own straps holding them and face powder puffs with powder kits and eyeliner and eye shadow and a bunch of different lipsticks and so many girl things I got lightheaded again.