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Episode 870: Crash Into Me

“Are you feeling okay? You’re just kind of pushing that pasta around on your plate. I think only like two bites have actually made their way into your moth,” Lucy said. “Are you feeling sick or something?”

“Oh, uh, no, it tastes great, too, I just, my mind keeps wandering to this kid,” Xavier said. He set his plate on Lucy’s coffee table and pulled a folded piece of paper from his shirt pocket.

Lucy nodded. “We have that up at school, too. It’s so sad and frustrating that there hasn’t been a match yet. I think everybody on staff was tested, me included, but it didn’t work out.”

“I should get tested, too,” he said. “I know I should, just in case, but anonymous situations have a way of becoming public when a former celebrity is involved.” He pushed a hand through his hair. “I know that’s selfish. I know I shouldn’t put my privacy ahead of possibly helping a kid. I know what it’s like to be a kid and fear for your life, maybe not in the same way, but I know that feeling, I shouldn’t just sit around and do nothing for him.”

“You had really private, personal things put out into the world about you, things that it’s hard for you to even talk about with a friend.” She rubbed his arm. “No one should have that done to them. You’ve found yourself a nice quiet life that you’re happy with, right? I wouldn’t expect you to take the risk of having that ripped away from you, of becoming headline again. I wouldn’t think any less of you for not exposing yourself to that, someone else will be found and it won’t cost that person the little bit of peace they’ve finally found.”

He nodded and took up his dinner plate again. He set the plate down again. “I’m pretty sure I met this kid when he was younger. Some Halloween maybe, I don’t know. I think he’s the son of one of Avalon’s friends.”

Lucy set her plate aside, too. She smoothed a hand over his and with a gentle expression she said, “beyond identifying with him, beyond that obviously anyone would feel for a kid in this situation, do you think this is weighing as heavily and as personally on you as it is because of your ex’s involvement?”

He half-shrugged it off, only half. “She knows the kid, but it’s not like he’s hers...”

“She’d be upset though, you’re thinking she must be upset. And you still love her.”

He greeted that revelation with a wincing, apologetic look.”

“It’s okay,” Lucy said. “Whatever we are we’re not there yet, maybe we never will be, I don’t know. I’m okay with whatever we are, and with whatever you feel for her as long as we can talk to each other. So let’s really talk this through for you. You still love her and she’s upset, so maybe in the back of your mind it’s occurred to you that if you’re tested, and if by chance you’re a match, she wouldn't be upset anymore, and she’s see you as a hero instead of as the guy who ditched her on your wedding day without an explanation.”

“I don’t know,” he mumbled. “Maybe. Maybe.”

“That thought doesn’t make you selfish, it makes you human to want to be the hero for someone you love, to make up for… whatever. I think about that sometimes, too, about my daughter.”

“You found her a good home, that’s heroic, she won’t grow up fearing for her life.”

“She might not think it was the heroic choice once she’s grown up.”

He touched her arm, and she leaned her head on his shoulder and they talked some more, and maybe didn’t solve anything for either of them, but it helped.

Episode 871: Say Say Say

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