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Loose Ends

By MaxCale

Romance

Distracted

Madison's mood picked up, slightly, when she saw Lauren walk in. The only redeeming thing about this summer punishment was that she didn't have to serve it alone. One of her best friends was there to share her pain and humiliation. She was about to say good morning when she saw the confused look on her face.

"What?"

"Did you know Amy came home early?"

"What! Why didn't she call us? When did she get back? Did something happen with John?"

"I don't know," Lauren replied, shaking her head and looking worried.

"Wait, how do you know she's back early? Why didn't you call me when you found out?" Madison asked, irritated, as she crossed her arms and glared at her best friend.

"I didn't know until this morning! She called my house and asked for 'Dr. Treacy'. I asked why she wanted to talk to my mom and why she'd called her by her professional title but she wouldn't answer me." Catching their boss' eye Lauren motioned to Madison that they needed to get to work. As they were getting buckets of cleaning solution and rags together Lauren looked around for their boss before leaning close to Madison and whispering.

"I heard my mom say Amy could come by the house that morning if she didn't wanna meet at my mom's office. What do you think's going on and why wouldn't she talk to us first?" Madison couldn't hide her surprise at finding out Amy wanted a therapy session, and from Lauren's mom of all people. She simply shook her head.

"We'll just have to go over there after work and find out." Lauren nodded in agreement. It was gonna be a long day of wondering though.

Back at the butcher shop Ricky was trying to stay focused on his job but, like Madison and Lauren, he was too distracted trying to figure out what was going on with Amy. Did something happen at the program that made her want to come home early? Maybe it has nothing to do with me at all. Ben noticed that Ricky had been lost in thought for most of the morning and during their first break his curiosity got the best of him.

"What's up with you today?"

"Huh?"

"You keep zoning out. Get into a fight with Amy or something?" Ricky let out a frustrated sigh and ran his right hand through his hair. Bingo.

"So what was it about?" Ricky thought about their brief conversation last night and the lack of one this morning and huffed out his frustration.

"That's just it, there was no fight! We started talking about," he suddenly paused, realizing he was about to reveal some of what he and Amy had discussed while in New York and quickly changed his explanation mid-sentence, "things, when she got lost in thought and quit talking to me. She said she wasn't mad at me but then she just sat on the couch, lost in thought again, and told me to go ahead and go to bed. And then this morning instead of finishing our conversation she actually refused to talk about it!" Ricky let out a frustrated breath, not realizing Ben's facial expression had changed, and continued.

"Then she called some doctor to make an appointment and the doctor offered to let Amy come to her house today instead of the hospital and when I asked her if everything was okay she just said 'It will be' all cryptic like, got her keys and drove off!"

"Wait, WHAT!"

"I know right! If you're gonna have a conversation with someone at least finish it or let them know you'll talk about it later. You don't just drop it like that! And you'd think she'd tell her son's father if she's having medical problems!"

"AMY'S BACK! AND SHE'S SICK?!" Ricky looked at Ben's surprised and anxious expression and smacked himself in the forehead. That's right genius; no one knows she's back early and you don't even know what's wrong with her. Thankfully they were on break and Ben immediately called Amy's cell. He frowned when it went straight to voicemail but he left a message anyway.

"Hi Amy. I just heard you were home and wanted to see if you were okay and wanted to meet up today and talk. Talk to you later. I love you, bye." Ricky just rolled his eyes. Amy would talk to Ben when she was ready and not a minute before, and he would be the one to find out what was wrong with Amy, not Ben. After break they were both absentminded, catching Bunny's attention. During a lull in customers she pulled them both aside.

"You know I don't mix business and personal lives but something personal has got you both distracted on the business end of things. Snap out of it and shape up!"

"Yes ma'am" they said in unison, and worked twice as hard for the rest of the morning to stay focused on their work.

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