Catie felt a thump as a small bundle of Tessa Jacobs hit her leg. Erik smiled and rolled his eyes as if he was put out by the seven years old's actions. Catie knew better.
"What's wrong?" she asked as she bent down to pick up Tessa.
"They're here again. You told me to come get you if I ever saw them. So I did." Catie's smile slid off her face as she lowered Tessa to the ground. She began walking back to the compound; she didn't stop when Erik called to her.
"Cate, Cate!" Erik grabbed her arm to spin her around. She took in his sweaty appearance and dusty look. She felt the hand slid down her arm and around her hand. "Together ok? Together." She didn't say anything but started the walk again.
As they rounded the building, she saw the car and the men, both dressed in black. The men were talking to Jonesie or Mrs. Jones, the director of St. Peter's Children's Home. She was teary and clearly confused. When she saw Catie, a look of relief and maybe fear came into her eyes. When the men saw Catie, she couldn't tell how they felt because of the big mirrored sunglasses they wore. The men made for the car.
"Stop right there. We had a deal. You were to give the Home a month before you ran another check and then you would begin to discuss what would happen." She felt Erik drop her hand and saw him walk lazily over to the front of the car. "It's been less than a week."
"Well, now um, miss,"
"Miss Hunter, the council decided that it would take too much away from the funds to renovate St. Peter's."
"Bull!" Cate yelled, somewhere in the back of her head a little voice said 'make him take off his glasses.' The voice liked any kind of manipulation, no matter how small or insignificant, if you can control a person, you have power. "Take off your glasses you idiot, we're in the shade, when you talk to me, I will look into your eyes." He fumbled to remove the mirrors and hung them folded from his breast pocket, the voice laughed and Cate continued to rant. "Do you know who I am? I am Cate Hunter; I am the person in charge of the Renovation Movement. I am the one who suggested we ask the Habitat for Humanity group to help and the one who contacted them and arranged time schedules. I am the Cate Hunter who signed an agreement with your people telling you not to come on this property for a month!" The business man looked frazzled, a moment ago; he'd been the intimidating one, now he was the one being intimidated, by a girl who looked 16.
"Well, Miss Catherine," the attempt to be friendly and use the full first name exploded. Her name was not Catherine. This time the voice screamed 'STEAL HIS GLASSES, MAKE HIM REGRET THE CATIEDARK.' The paltry smile died on the man's lips as he saw her reaction change.
"Any decisions made here today about the closing and evacuation of St. Peter's Children's Home, in the downtown area, are now considered null and void until they have been reviewed and discussed by our committee, if we agree or have issues with any of it, we will contact you."
"Wha-wha-what can you do? Ya-ya-you can't even vote yet." The man was frantically trying to open the car door behind him. Cate's presence seemed to engulf the man and bend him to her will while commanding everyone else's attention. Cate calmly reached behind the man and opened the door.
"Mister Gilmore, I'm twenty four." She pushed him back wards into the car, her hands left him in a wide arc and in the sunlight only Erik saw the glint of the shades in Cate's right hand. Or so he thought.
"She's very good isn't she?" He jumped as the girl beside him spoke.
She wasn't a girl really, she was younger than he and Cate but she had the air of an accomplished adult. Her appearance was that of a flowery bright painter. She wore faded and ratty overalls over a bright yellow belly shirt that matched the yellow sunflower in the brim of her woven hat. With one finger she pushed up the bridge of her sunglasses, they also had sunflowers in the corners. The finger was not one of the more commonly used for the job and the driver of the car looked offended at the gesture.
"But then again, we're on the out side of the city here, I mean; we're standing in a yard and all." She took another look at Cate and shook her head. "I almost hate to say it but I thought she'd be taller. Then again, the height in the Wayne family goes straight to the boys, not so much to the girls. Well, come on, aren't you going to introduce me to your girlfriend?"
"She's not my girlfriend, she's my sister."