On the return trip, Jim must have noticed her preoccupation. He asked, “Anything I can help with, Emma? You seem concerned, agitated.”
“It’s nothing, really. Going over possible scenarios in my head. How much do you know about what’s going on, what we’re checking into?”
“Enough.” His remark seemed less than straightforward.
Emma’s honest straightforward appraisal of the situation was on target and her response to it did not surprise him. “I’m worried for Nathan.”
“Nathan’s quite capable of taking care of himself, and he has me too. I wouldn’t worry on that score.”
“I know he probably has a small army surrounding him at all times, but I am concerned it’s me that brought this trouble to his door.”
“Nathan’s no stranger to trouble, or handling it either, for that matter, Emma. Rest assured, he’s got the situation well in hand.”
“That relieves my mind appreciably but doesn’t allay the guilt I feel about this.”
“No matter how it came to light, Emma, Nathan would still take it on and follow the breadcrumbs to absolve the innocent and see the guilty are brought to justice. This is not on you. Nathan chose to become involved. He didn’t have to, he could have walked away.”
“No, that’s just it, he couldn’t and he wouldn’t. We both know that.”
“My responsibility is his safety, first and foremost, Emma. I don’t take that roll lightly. Believe me, when I say, even Nathan isn’t aware of how many people are guarding him. I’m his in charge of all protection detail. I’ve got this covered.”
“Alright then. I’ll try and relax, not sure I will, completely, but I will try.”
“Good.” He nodded at her in the mirror.
When she returned, Nathan popped in for a moment. “Hello lovely. Been painting up a storm. Had an idea, had to go with it. Not quite finished yet. The need for sustenance outweighed even painting,” he smirked as he said it.
“Want a late lunch?”
“Sure, what we having?”
“Whatever we can rummage up. ”
They set about making a dipped hot roast beef sandwich, and around mouthfuls, Emma filled him in on her visit with Harold.
“Sounds like Harold’s good people. He obviously cares about his staff. Pretty commendable.”
“Yeah, yeah, he does.”