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"Sis," he called to Shirley, as she was putting on her earrings and walking into the living room, "I don't think it's a good idea for me and Charlie to go to the hospital with you. We've got some company."

"Oh?" asked Shirley, puzzled by what Adam had meant. Then she went to the window and saw what the men were looking at. "I see," she sighed. "I thought you're being in Twin Yucca without anyone knowing, wouldn't last very long. It was bound to come out, sooner or later. Well, I'll drop you and Charlie off at Vera's place, if that's what you want. I'll tell Thomas you couldn't make it."

"I'm sorry," apologized Adam.

"There's no need for that," dismissed Shirley with a wave of her hand. "At the rate Thomas and I are going, I probably won't be visiting him much longer-- whether he's still in the hospital, or not."

Now that they were being followed, Kevin took extra precautions to be careful for Charlie's safety. Donned with a baseball cap and a pair of sunglasses, Kevin whisked Charlie into the minivan, while Adam followed hard on their heels. When Shirley saw the cloak and dagger maneuvers that her brother had resorted to, just to move about Twin Yucca, she shook her head in disapproval. It was times such as these, that she felt certain that Adam had made a terrible mistake in making his identity public.

Charlie didn't get to see much of Twin Yucca as it passed by her window, for Kevin had her looking down at her shoes the entire drive. In fact, she wouldn't have even known that they had arrived at their destination, had not Shirley announced it out loud.

Not wasting any time, Kevin scuttled his clients into the Overholt house, and then returned for their luggage. Glad that the "hired gun" was finally out of her home, Shirley drove off with Chad to the hospital.

Before Charlie had a chance to take off her hat and shades, Vera was hugging her granddaughter.

"Oh!" cried the delighted old woman, "let me have a look at you, Pumpkin! Why, you're much too thin! What has Adam been feeding you?"

"Hi, Vera," grinned Adam, leaning forward and giving Charlie's grandma a hug. "How have you and Chuck been holding out?"

"We've been doing just fine!" Vera exclaimed happily. "Sit down, and tell me all the news! What's been going on since the wedding, besides your honeymoon?" When Vera slowly went to her chair to knit while they talked, Charlie noticed a limp in her walk.

"Grandma," asked Charlie, "what happened?"

"It's nothing," Vera explained, "I just twisted my hip getting out of the shower this morning. I expect it'll go away by tonight."

"Why didn't you tell me on the telephone?!" cried Charlie, wondering if there was anything else wrong that she hadn't told her.

"I knew you were coming, so why worry you over nothing?" reasoned Vera, picking up her knitting bag and finding where she had left off on the scarf she was making. "Stop fussing over me, Charlie. I'm fine."

Kevin spotted his usual place by the front window, where he could get a good vantage of the street, and sat down in the recliner that had been placed there just for him. He wasn't surprised to see that the SUV that had been tailing them since Shirley's house, was now parked across the street.

"Where's Daddy?" asked the the young woman, now wanting to take inventory of Chuck, as well.
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