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"What's wrong?" wondered Charlie. "I'm trying to make you happy, but you seem set against it. Why, Adam?"

"What makes you think I'm unhappy?" he asked, looking up at her in surprise.

"During the last few days," explained Charlie, "I've felt something slip between us. I thought it was because I've been too busy to spend much time with you, but now, I'm not so sure. When you look at me, it's as if you're testing me. I can't explain it, but yesterday and today, I see it in your eyes. What's going on, Adam? Is it something I did?"

With a heavy heart, Adam tightly shut his eyes. He had thought he could keep his unspoken struggles secret, but Charlie was proving him wrong. She was in his heart, and knew when something else was in there with her.

"I have been trying to tell you," he responded, immediately hating the defensive tone that crept into his own voice. "I just keeping getting interrup--" Adam was cut off by another shout from the broad-shouldered man who had called Charlie away, a few minutes earlier. Adam bit his tongue, trying to keep his patience with the situation.

"They'll be going home in an hour or two," she tried to explain. "Do you want me to stay with you until then?"

"No," Adam smiled patiently, "you go do what needs to get done. I'll be okay."

"We'll talk, later," said Charlie getting up and taking two steps forward. She paused, and looked back at her husband. "We'll talk, tonight," she promised.

Adam nodded gratefully, and watched as she walked away.

"God, please, help me," he entreated Heaven.

For the remainder of the workday, Charlie went about her business with a sense of urgency. When Beppe stopped to talk before climbing in his truck and driving away, Charlie found herself trying to hurry him along. How could she explain that her husband was waiting for her? As the last of the crew drove down the dirt road and disappeared out of sight, Charlie closed and locked the main gate, still trying to puzzle out what was going on with Adam. She was quick to blame herself for whatever was distressing him, but was at a loss to explain why. It just had to be her fault. After all, Charlie reasoned, she was the younger, more inexperienced one in this relationship.

When Charlie stepped inside their mobile home, Adam was quietly sitting before his piano, looking very much as though he didn't have the heart to play.

"I really need to talk to you," he said, his voice betraying the strain he was presently under.

The sound of dinner preparations coming from the kitchen, told Charlie that Vera was going to have the food ready, before too long.

"I'll tell her we'll eat later," said Charlie.

"No," sighed Adam, shaking his head. "Don't do that. I'd forgotten about dinner. Vera's gone to too much trouble, to not show up when she expects us. I can wait."

"Adam," whispered Charlie, taking a seat beside him on the piano bench, "you're scaring me."

"I'm sorry," he mumbled, as Charlie leaned her head against his shoulder.

Before five minutes had passed, Vera was calling everyone to dinner. Adam and Charlie ate in relative silence, and finished their meal sooner than usual.

"What's the hurry?" wondered Vera, as the two excused themselves from the table.
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