“No. Not until you tell me something. Anything.” Onnie crossed her arms indignantly.
“Cat. Don’t do that. Come on, you’re bleeding.” As he reached for her hand Onnie rotated away from him. Gabriel sighed. “Cat. That’s a big question, and one you should be asking the old man. Not me. Now give me your hand.”
With a heavy sigh Onnie placed her bloody hand palm up in Gabriel’s.
“That’s a good girl.” As if she were porcelain, Gabriel began washing her palm clean. “This shop is special Cat. Very special.”
“Ah… a book just threw me across the room. I figured that part out for myself thank you.”
Gabriel lifted his head and looked into her eyes. Her familiar sparkle was back. With an eye wide grin, he rested her now clean palm in her lap. “Turn please, I want to look at the cut.”
Onnie shifted slowly and winced we the arm of the chair dug into her bruise.
“I’ll get to the bruise in a minute, the bleeding has me more worried.”
“Yup. Now lean back towards me just a little bit.” Gabriel ran his fingers through her silky black strands and parted it into two sections, throwing it over her shoulders on either side. He found the inch wide cut and probed it gently. “Looks shallow and only about an inch long. You’ll be fine, no stitches needed. Head injuries tend to bleed worse than they are.” Reaching back to the table and the stack of supplies he brought, Gabriel twirled a clean cotton swab in cleaning solution. “This won’t sting, but it is cold.” He dabbed it on the cut washing away the blood.
“Will you answer me one thing… please?”
“I’ll try Cat.” Gabriel switched to a clean gauze pad and dabbed her scalp dry.
“Where do you fit into all of this? I mean that book threw you too right?”
“Yes it did. - Sit up, you’re finished. Turn and let me see that bruise. - I was lucky enough not to have a wall behind me though.” Flashing his smile and a wink, Gabriel lifted the hem of her sweatshirt.
“You’re not answering the question.”
“Right. Sorry.” His fingers palpated the flesh gingerly. “I’m sort of her protector, and by extension yours now.”