The next morning, I was in the middle of making pancakes when I got a call from Collins.
“You like pancakes?” I asked.
The question short-circuited his train of thought. “What?”
“Barbarian. Blueberries in pancakes are fine, but you have to have actual maple syrup.”
“I like the cabin stuff in the grocery store.”
“I’m going to get you some actual Vermont maple syrup.”
“Whatever. Listen, we’ve crunched the data and made a map of his last four weeks. Get in here and help us figure out where the deals are going down. We’ve ruled out a couple of places already, but there are too many others to choose from.”
“Right. I’ll be an hour.”
“Fine.” He hung up.
“Cassie, we gotta go!”
She dragged herself into the kitchen as if it was a school day, letting her head flop onto folded arms on the table.
“What’s with you?” I asked, putting her breakfast down in front of her.
“Stayed up late.”
Her head lifted and glared at me with red, sleep-deprived eyes. “Those stupid books you gave me!”
I grinned. “Got you hooked, huh?”
“Ugh. You suck. I never thought it was the sister.”
I had to do some mental arithmetic to figure out which book she was talking about.
“Yeah, that one was a bit of a shocker when I first read it.”
“How old were you?”
“Ten? Nana and Grandpa let you read about this stuff when you were ten?”
“Grandpa did. Nana didn’t really know what they were. She was just glad I was reading something beyond the comic books your dad read.”
“Dad read comic books?”
“Sure. I did to.”
“But you just said—”
I shrugged. “She always saw me with a book, but I still read the comic books after your dad finished with them.”
“Did Dad read your books?”
“He tried, but it wasn’t his thing. He liked westerns.”
“Yeah, there’s no accounting for taste.”