Pine Street Episode 333: The chill of winter

Leo’s wet shoes stand by Jeeves’ front door as his soaked hoodie and socks get a tumble in her dryer. Her living room, which has held many important (and many more delightfully silly) conversations, provides a warm space to wait. Leo realizes that while he has joined gatherings with Jeeves, this is the first time it is just the two of them. He sees, or rather feels, the reason why she has so quickly become an integral part of the Pine Street community: he feels completely at ease, even while barefoot and sitting on a towel to protect her couch.

“What were you chasing through the sleet and cold, Leo?” Jeeves asks, blowing gently across the top of her tea mug before taking a sip. It is uncannily the right question, and Leo opens up immediately.

“A decision. A choice. My choice. I’m terrible at decisions,” he offers.

“Franny?” asks Jeeves.

“She wants me to come down to Arizona. For a visit,” he adds, hastily.

“Goodness,” Jeeves responds, glancing out the window at the freezing rain. “That sounds wonderful. Get on the next plane, Leo.” Her smile indicates she is well aware it is not that simple. 

“I know I should. I mean, I will. Probably.” He sighs. “See what I mean? I’m terrible at this.” 

Jeeves takes another sip of tea. She seems to be considering her next statement carefully. “No, I don’t think that’s it at all, Leo,” she says. “I think you make decisions as well as the next person. Your struggle seems to be accepting that your decision is made, and most of all, sharing your decision with people you love.” 

An irritated response rises to Leo’s lips. “I’m glad you think so, but what decision have I made? I have no idea what to do.” He regrets his tone, but does not apologize for it. “I wish someone would tell me the right next step.”

“Do you love Franny?” Jeeves asks. 

“Of course,” he answers.

“Does she love you?”

At that moment, the dryer buzzes loudly, insisting Leo’s things are ready; as Leo himself begins to weep.

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