The first weekend of September fills the town with folks headed to the fair and rodeo. Franny, Allison, Kassandra, and Jeeves take refuge from the crowds, meeting up in Jeeves’ house for early coffee and yesterday’s pastries provided by Kassandra.
“So, my lovelies. How ends this summer of love?” Jeeves asks, as they settle into the comfortable chairs on her back deck, still shaded this early in the morning.
“The what?” Allison asks, but her cheeks are flushed.
“No need to blush, my dear. You found Emil, Kassandra found David, or did he find her? And our Franny has had her Leo for some time now.” Jeeves pauses, blows on her coffee to cool, or maybe to give them time to compose themselves. “I’m not putting anyone on the spot, am I? I mean, here we are, with coffee and sugar and time, and why wouldn’t we talk about these men in our lives?”
Franny seems about to reply, but stuffs a bite of Danish in her mouth instead. Allison stares intently at her mug.
It takes Kassandra to spot the hint. “Our lives?” she says. “Does that include you, Jeeves? And where are you hiding this man in your life?”
They all gaze at the garden, which has faded from bright green to sage and brown. Later-blossoming plants are gamely hanging on. Over in the vegetable area, bright red jewels of cherry tomatoes call out to be picked and eaten, warm from the sun, and a pumpkin vine threatens to take over the entire block.
“He’s hiding under that pumpkin vine, isn’t he,” Allison asks, a deeply serious expression on her face.
This breaks them all up into cascades of laughter.
“My good women, our lives are all bound up together,” Jeeves offers as they compose themselves. “The men in your lives are the men in my life, and vice versa.”
I notice, though, that she did not answer my question directly, Kassandra muses.