Max was waiting patiently by the porch door. No mass destruction had occurred. Graydon let him out into the back yard and they left him to run around for a bit. Marty had started to put groceries away.
“Do you have any idea of how long it’s been since I had this much food in the house?” she asked.
“By the dust on some of the cupboard shelves, I’d say at least a year.”
“More like two. I just gave up at some point and decided that it was cheaper to eat out. The only thing I really stock is my tea and in the summer time, ice cream,” she admitted.
Graydon turned to her with a smile. “So, that’s why there was a nearly empty container of ice cream with a spoon in it in the freezer?” he asked. As he turned, he held up a small cardboard cup with a spoon sticking out of it.
“Awwwgh! You would find that! I thought I’d finished that months ago.” Marty’s face was turning red as she took the container from him. She salvaged the spoon and dumped the container in the trash.
Max barked outside, and Graydon went to the back door. Max was just barking at birds, so he left him alone. Graydon turned to see Marty trying to reach up to put something in a high cupboard. He walked up behind her and took it from her hand. He put it on the shelf and then closed the cupboard.
“You know, I could help if you’d let me,” he said.
Marty looked up at him with a sigh. “Yeah, but I’m not use to having others in the house, let alone around long enough to help.”
“Well, maybe you ought to get used to it.” He turned and went over to the table. He pulled out a chair for her. “We need to sit down and talk about some things.”
Marty walked over and sat down. She wasn’t very good at this type of thing. “I know we need to talk. I’m still sort of blown away by the last day or so. What do you want to do?”
“It can’t be just what I want. It has to be what we want. I know what I’d like, but it’s only part of this whole thing,” Graydon reached over and took her hands in his. He liked being able to touch her. She squeezed his hands with hers.
“Okay, since you won’t say what you’d like, I’ll start. Logically, we could continue on with our separate lives and just date, have sex and share Max. As far as I’m concerned, that isn’t much better than being single.”
“No, it isn’t. And that isn’t an option that I’d vote for,” said Graydon.
“Alright. I can’t see me moving into your apartment. No yard, and I’d have to go back to paying rent.”
“You own this house?” he asked.
“Yes. Bought it about five years ago. All I owe are yearly taxes, insurance and utilities. But back to us. Would you be comfortable moving in with me?”
Graydon’s first impulse was to holler ‘Hell Yes!’, but he was watching her body language and also smelled a bit of fear coming from her. “I would be very comfortable moving in with you. However, how do you feel about that?” he asked, hoping he’d opened up the right spot for conversation.
Marty took a deep breath. “Well, I see it as a much better way to handle everything. I just worry that we might be rushing things. At the same time, I’d be all for moving you in here this afternoon if we could find a truck.”
“That reminds me, we forgot to go by my apartment. If you’d seen it, you’d not worry about needing a truck. Most of my stuff would fit in one trip with the Saab. Maybe two. I’m not a possessions heavy type,” he said moved a little closer to Marty. “Now why are you hesitant about us moving in together?”
Marty looked at him and then down at their hands. “I’m… I’m thirty-five, don’t want children, and have never seen myself as the marrying type. I don’t want to give you any false hopes or misleading ideas,” she said. “And… I’ve always been better with dogs and horses than men.”
Graydon smiled. “Okay, confession time. “I’m not into marriage either. Children? No, I’ll leave that to my sister and our two brothers. As for age, I’m forty-two.”
“What? Forty-two? You certainly don’t look that old. I don’t believe it,” she said,
Graydon smiled again as he pulled out his wallet. He took out his drivers license and handed it over to Marty. She looked at the birth date, did the math and looked at him as she handed it back. “Okay, I was wrong. Wow.”
Marty was quiet for a moment. She stood up and walked over to the window to see what Max was up to. He was running around the yard chasing a moth or butterfly. No holes in the yard either. She sat back down. “Graydon,” she hesitated.
Graydon reached over and touched her face. “Marty, may I move in with you? With the understanding that we don’t want to marry or have children, and that I’m an ancient old fart who happens to be a werewolf?”
That made her smile. “Yes.” She stood up, came round the table and wrapped her arms around him as she kissed him. His arms felt good around her and that scent. Oh… she didn’t dare get distracted right now.
They locked Max back up on the porch and headed over to Graydon’s apartment. He opened the door, and the smell of sour milk hit his nose. “Oh gods! I didn’t think that it would go off so fast,” he said as he grabbed the pint of milk out of the fridge and poured it down the sink. He ran water and cleared out the sink.
Marty looked around. “You were right when you said that you didn’t have much. I think your computer is the biggest item in the whole room. And even it isn’t very big,” she commented.
“No, and if I had my way, it would be a laptop. I just haven’t had time to upgrade to one I like. Do you have a computer?” he asked.
Marty nodded. “It’s in the spare bedroom. Nothing great, just enough to let me do email and cruise the web. I never have time to do much.”
Graydon smiled. He grabbed his clothes out of the dresser and closet and dropped them into garbage bags for the trip. He put them in first to pad out the area before he brought his computer out. The monitor was the most awkward to place. Marty just stuffed bedding around it and shut the hatch.
Graydon looked around the apartment. He did a quick check of all the cupboards and drawers. Marty gave the bathroom a quick clean while he tidied up the kitchen area. They grabbed the eggs out of the fridge and the trash and shut the door. He walked over to the manager’s apartment and gave him the keys after a brief chat.
“That’s taken care of. The manager will see if it needs any more cleaning and will deduct the cost from what he’ll have to refund me out of my rent and deposit,” he said. They headed out towards the main part of town.
“That’s fair. You haven’t even been there a month have you?”
“No, just about three weeks. Barely enough time to get settled.” Graydon turned down Marty’s street and pulled into the driveway instead of in front of the house. “Once we unload this, we aught to go pick up your car. It’s still at the diner.”
“Oh,… I’d forgotten about it. Do you think we can get it without the Henry’s seeing us?” she asked.
“We can certainly try.” Graydon opened the back hatch and grabbed the computer monitor. He headed towards the house.
Marty grabbed a bag of clothing and unlocked the door for Graydon. It took about ten minutes to take everything up to the front upstairs bedroom. Not that he’d sleep in there, but it gave him space for his clothes and there was room for his computer too.
They let Max out for a bit. They put him back on the porch, and then headed over to the Dirty Spoon.