TITLE: The Green Boy
Bliss' and Milo's 13-year-old daughter Linnie is hours late coming home from school. Their missing ranch hand has just found out that Bliss' mother was accused of killing his mother -- and may have met Linnie on her way.
We'd called her several times, and she hadn’t answered. We paced; we looked at each other and then looked away because we couldn’t bear the fear we saw in each other’s eyes. We knew we had to call the sheriff, and we did, and it left us feeling like she was already dead.
What had I been thinking, to bring Jody here in the first place, much less to let him stay once we knew who he was? How had I thought this would end? My small voice suggested that maybe Jody still didn't know, that maybe all this was an innocent mistake. Yeah, right, I heard my inner cynic snarl. Blue Impalas. Shacks in the Tennessee woods. Orphaned baby boys. Aunt and uncle. Diary. Witches. Witches, witches, witches.
There were sketches in her diary, sketches of That Poor Woman, That Husband of Hers, their house, maybe the aunt and uncle too. I knew Mother was a pretty good artist when it came to flowers, but I didn't know if the faces she drew were recognizable. Had Jody ever seen pictures of his parents?
If we'd told him sooner. If we'd found him work somewhere else. If I'd taken him to the sheriff's office in Bisbee to begin with. If Linnie'd spent the night with Maria or Sophie in Benson instead of coming home. If it wasn't storming. If, if, if. Gods, Bliss, I finally told myself. You are a Witch. Stop iffing around and do some magic, woman!