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After METRO Center more passengers filed out of the train than filed in. As the subway car came to a stop and the doors swooshed open the train’s P.A. system announced, “Rosslyn Station. Rosslyn. Doors opening on the right.”

Gabrielle leaned into her traveling companion and asked, “Arlington’s next, right?”

Bill answered, “Yep. Arlington’s next,” just as the train started forward and announced Arlington as the next stop.

“I was pretty sure but I lost track. Must be the stimulating company.”

“Yeah. I get that all the time. Who are you meeting at Arlington?”

“My big brother. We’ve been meeting there at least twice a year since I was thirteen.”

“Live around here?”

“Sort of. We don’t see each other much but we’re close. He’s my confidant. So you never answered my question.”

“I’m sorry. What question was that?”

“Do you have any kids?”

“Oh! Right. Yeah. Two sons. Douglass is the older one and Sean is his little brother. Except Sean is bigger. Doug has two kids but Sean’s never married. How about you? Much family in the area?”

“Some. My folks are divorced and they just had me and Bill.”

“Bill’s your big brother?”

“Yep. Adriel’s family is bigger. Two sisters and a brother but they don’t live close. West coasters.”

“That’s where I’m heading. Flying in to San Francisco.”

“Oh. I like San Francisco. Nice weather. His family is more southern. Think Las Angeles, Las Vegas, Phoenix. Kind of the Bermuda Triangle of the desert south west.”

“I take it you’re not much of a fan.”

“Of Adriel’s family or the area? I love his family and I like visiting the area I just wouldn’t want to live there.”

“Closer to Comic Con,” he said with a small elbow jab.

Gabrielle laughed. “Well, there is that, but somehow even I can’t go in quite that deep.”

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