Breed Book 3, Part 10

Mikaela opened the door to Tucker’s car and slid inside. “Was beginning to think we’d have to pick you up at the corner store,” Tucker said, nodding at the rearview mirror, “because there’s our girl.”

Mikaela tossed a bag into the back as Irene opened the back door and sat behind Tucker. “You already got snacks,” she said, her voice creaking. “And a fidget spinner.”

“I felt bad,” Mikaela started, and Tucker cleared his throat, “about taking your pen earlier.”

“It’s okay. If I hadn’t had you two keeping me company for the trip down here, I’d have chewed every nail and cuticle off my hands. You helped distract me, is what I’m saying. And I appreciated it.”

“How’d it go with the prosecutor?” Tucker asked, pulling the car away from the curb.

“She was really nice.,” Irene replied. “And she said it went about as well as it could. Especially the parts where the defense opened the door for us. She said it was a really good sign he hardly had any questions on cross; it means the testimony was so devastating that more questions would just increase the damage. Still, I’m shaking.”

“You want your pen back?”

“I want to be less of a neurotic mess, if I’m being honest.”

“I have a pen,” Mikaela held it out to her, before putting a sucker in her fingers next to it, “or a lollipop.”

“I could make you sleep the whole way home,” Tucker said.

“Might that make me incontinent?” Irene asked.

“Only if that’s what you really want.”

“I might have something to say about that,” Mikaela said.

“Why?” Tucker asked. “It’s my backseat and her front seat, respectively.”

“I think I’d rather, remember this, if that makes any sense,” Irene said. “Whatever happens next. This feels like a moment I can use. I got a chance to stand up for us. And I did.”

“And we are both really proud,” Mikaela said.

“And a little jealous.”

“Was that why you were rallying so hard for me to wet myself?” Irene asked.

“Either you two have a stranger friendship than I realized, or this is some really weird flirting,” Mikaela said.

“She’s just jealous,” Tucker said, and Irene burst out laughing.

“There is nothing to be jealous of,” Irene said, barely containing more laughter.

“There isn’t?” Tucker whimpered.

“Now he’s just fucking with you.”

“I’m not sure Tucker’s ever not fucking with anyone,” Mikaela said. “We both love him and hate him for it.”

“Aw,” Tucker said, “really?”

“No. It’s mostly just hate.”

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