Been working on Hedge Doctor: Prom this week.
The ringing of Jeff’s cell phone pealed in the silence of study hall. Heat spread across his face as he dug it out of his bag.
“Mister Hanson, we have rules about phones.” Ice edged Miss Darling’s voice.
He silenced the ringer as he read the screen. “It’s my grandmother.” As usual, the phrase worked like magic.
Miss Darling gestured toward the door. “Please, take it outside. I hope she’s doing better.”
Jeff nodded, holding in a sigh, as he shoved his physics homework into his bag. “I’m heading right for Mr. Burns.” Mr. Burns was his school appointed grief counselor, who he could see whenever he needed. He had no idea which one of his many cousins spread the story, but everyone knew Jeff was an orphan who lived with his ailing grandmother.
He did live with his grandmother, but he wasn’t an orphan, and Nana was in great shape for her age.
He called her back as soon as he closed the classroom door. “What’s up, Nana?”
“Demon hunters thinking they’re invincible.”
Jeff groaned into the phone as he headed for the administration offices. “What happened this time?”
“Seth took on a floga with just his sister. They’re lucky they made it out alive, n’at. You’d think they’d know better than to take on something that big and pois’nous without any backup.”
“Who’s bringing him?”
“Rick and Matty. They was huntin’ that floga too.”
Some tension left his shoulders. Rick and Matty knew how to be circumspect, unlike most of the demon hunters he patched up on a daily basis. “I’ll meet them in the basement.”
“I’ll let ‘em know.”
As the phone died, Jeff waved to his cousin, Sheila, through the glass wall of her office.
She reached into her desk as he approached the door, already grabbing the pink pre-signed hall pass. “I’ll take care of it.” She leaned back her chair and called out over her shoulder. “George! Jeff is headed to the basement.”
He glanced in the door. Behind the shiny brass plaque on his desk, his balding Uncle George waved, before turning off his monitor, shutting his blinds, and closing his eyes.
Shelia shook her head. “Close the door, before someone sees him napping.”
Jeff nodded his thanks. Having family on the staff made navigating high school a lot easier for someone like him. Sheila took care of coordinating everything, and Uncle George loved having thirty minutes to sleep whenever Jeff needed to be out of class.