crook takes pawn part 41

    A different woman answers. Greg is momentary confused. Then, it dawns on him.
"Hi, I'm Greg," he introduces, "You must be her sister Amy?"
    Amy is a slightly stockier version of Rebecca. Same blue eyes, same brown hair, just a little shorter. She is dressed in a camouflage sweatshirt, the kind the hunters wear. Her dark blue jeans are outlined by the backlight of the glowing TV. Amy's eyes light up with delight, and she claps her hands together .
"Greg!!" she squeals with glee, and gives him a quick hug. Greg is mortified by this. He tries not to show his surprise at her antics.
"I'm sorry," Amy says quickly, "but this is a bit much for me"
"me too," Greg says with an unsure smile. Amy laughs again, and shakes her head.
"I know what you did, for Rebecca and Julie," Amy says. She pauses, her jaw still working, but nothing coming out. To Greg's chagrin, there were tears in her eyes. this was awkwardness overload. Amy had oozed all over Greg with a bout of verbal diarrhea.
"Greg?" Rebecca calls down from above. Greg leans out on tiptoes to peer at the stairwell which leads to the second floor.
"Hey Rebecca!!" Greg shouts, feeling kinda foolish.
"I'll be right down," Rebecca says, as the hum of a hairdryer starts up.
"Come on in and sit down at the kitchen," Amy invites, turning before Greg has a chance to answer. Greg looks at the lush carpet in this sprawling home. It is a multi-level loop pile and it is nice. Greg shakes his head. What a strange piece of information to keep around in ones head, carpet loops and such.
"Should I take my shoes off?" Greg asks hesitantly. Amy's feet were clad in socks.
"Don't worry about it," Amy says, rounding the corner to the kitchen, "C'mon in, we've got snacks,"
    Amy's tears have dissipated on their own, and Greg is grateful. He too rounds the corner into the kitchen, just in time to see Amy scoop up Julie in her arms. The little tyke wears a long nightgown, with fluffy collar on top. Amy presses her cheek against Julie's, and the two stare attentively at Greg.
"Look who's here, Ju-Ju," Amy whispers in the child's ear. Greg walks proudly over to Julie. He is welcomed here. Already he feels at place here. Julie watches him with those large doll-like eyes.
"Ju-Ju, huh?" Greg says, crossing his arms and tipping his head towards Julie, Her smile compresses upon itself, indecissive  if her lips should loop or or keep straight. Greg attempts to draw her from that demure seriousness.
"Like the candy," Amy says, running her finger through Julie's hair to steady her timidness.
"Do you like Ju-Ju bees?" Greg asks in a clear voice. No baby talk. Just having a chat.
    Julie's smile threatens to break free. She is coy.
"You can tell him," Amy instructs, "Do you like Ju-Ju's?"
Julie finally nods, and Greg coos in appreciation.
"Me too, Ju-Ju." Greg says, pointing to himself.
Greg has won her over. Julie motions out towards Greg again, teensy arms begging to be passed over. Amy's face crumples with endearment, but she swings Julie away from Greg.
"No, I'm sorry missy, you've gotta go to bed."
    Julie grunts her disproval at being made to wait for affection. Her tiny fingers open and close rapidly as she is lead away. At realization she is being taken further from Greg, Julie lets go a torrent of tears. Most times a child's crying would be disruptive, but this is good sign of Julie's attachment to him.
"Somebody's tired," Greg says in a whimsical voice.
"Awwww, don't be like that," Amy requests, "I told you, it's beddy-bye time."
Julie continues her protest as she is hauled back to her room.
"What's the matter?" Rebecca yells from upstairs. The hairdryer has ceased it's noise.
"Oh, she wanted Greg to hold her, but it's been almost 8 hours since her last nap."
"She likes Greg," Rebecca says simply, "He can hold her. It's okay, Greg, you can pick her up."
    Amy circles back round with Julie in her grip. Julie's sobs taper off in proximity to Greg. She rubs her eyes, but the sniffling also fades. Greg holds his arms out to her. Now, Julie is quiet. She nuzzles Amy's neck, away from Greg.
    It seems that baby girls also share a women's need for reverse psychology. The moment Greg offered a hug, Julie turned away. It was only when Greg was aloof that she would resume her efforts.
    "Ok, I see how you are," Greg says playfully, "I guess we won't be buddies then."
    Greg walks away, with overactive steps, exaggerating his leaving. Julie's eyes widened as she pivoted back towards Greg. He pauses, giving Julie an impish look. Slowly, Julie's arms pinwheeled toward him again. Greg snatched her from Amy. Greg carefully held Julie aloft, and wiggled his hands back and forth, shaking her slightly.
"I've got you now, my pretty!!" Greg cackles, attempting a bad Wicked Witch impression, "And your little Ju-Ju too!!"
    Julie shrieks her cheeriness. Her stubby legs kick for balance as Greg shifts her back and forth. Greg keeps a strong hold on her the entire time, to prevent a fall, then lowers Julie to rest on his right hip. Greg's arm supports the kids little bottom, and Julie holds her hands to her mouth in self-consciousness.
"You can sit on that chair, Greg," Amy says.
Greg does just that, moving Julie to sit on his knee.
    "we've got crackers, and summer sausage, along with cheese," Amy says, pushing a tray of goodies towards Greg. In a show of hospitality, Greg munches on the assorted bits of food. It was delicious. Costly stuff. Expensive seemed to be the word of the day. Everything was pretty glitzy around here. Mahogany grained cabinets lined both the tops and bottom of the massive kitchen. Matching stainless steel appliances rounded out the appeal. This kitchen alone looked to cost more than Greg's store/home.
    Julie's grasping hand searches for a piece of meat. Greg pushes the tray out of her reach.
    "She's not allowed to eat this, right?" Greg asks, holding up a circular piece of the sausage.
"Not the meat, but she can have a  cracker," Amy says.
Greg breaks up half of a Ritz and feeds it to Julie. Julies mouth spastically chews the cracker to bits. A few loose crumbs tumble free.
"Give her some of this," Amy says, handing Greg a purple sippie cup.
Greg tilts the glass to Julie's mouth. Her bottom lip juts out as she slurps from the tip of the spill-proof lid.
"She's just getting in teeth," Amy explains, "She's been getting up at night because she's cranky."
"I'll bet," Greg mutters.
"Do you have any kids, Greg?"
"Yes, a son, Raymond. I can still remember all those late nights with him, rocking him, and walking, struggling to stay awake."
"How old is your son now?"
"He's 12." Greg says, in sudden wonderment. He has been a father for 12 years. Well, for about 6 years anyway. Things turned to shit, after that, Greg had fled. It sounded bad to say it like that, but it is what it is. Greg had escaped his wife and child, signing on the dotted line.
    Julie was wriggling on his leg. Greg set her down. She hastily crawled over to a colorful press-button display. Greg eased up from his seat and sat down heavily on the floor. Julie looked up momentarily from her distraction, but quickly resumed her activites. Greg sat across from her, studying her with his curious green eyes. Julie's head twirled animatedly as she followed the dancing chains of lights. Greg presses a Random button and the circular pattern changes, lighting up blinking red.
"Gwah, do" Julie babbles. Greg continues pressing buttons. An array of sound emanate from the elaborate device. Greg was so involved in their play he hardly noticed Rebecca standing there watching.
    From Greg's low perspective, Rebecca's breasts blot out her face partially. She looks stunning. Her eloquent face between those two hanging orbs adds much to the sight. She wears a sophisticated outfit, a black suit-vest with faint pinstripe lines tracing the swell of her chest. Underneath the vest, a long sleeved sweater, with frilly white cuffs ending by her wrists. A Similar white collar rounds about her neck. As Greg stood up to meet her, his eyes trailed along her legs. Black platform boots, dark pants with those white stripes curving eagerly upward to meet her hips. A belt with silver buckle, cinched around those arcing hips.
    "Hello, Greg," she says saucily. Greg's tongue felt rubbery.
"Hey, Rebecca," he says thickly, "you look amazing."
"You look pretty good yourself," she says, stepping forward. The thick heel of her boot thumps on the hardwood floor of the kitchen.

Uploaded 03/11/2012
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