30 Thirty

    The next day, I ended up falling asleep when Humphrey did, around six in the afternoon, and we both slept straight through to three in the morning. Neither of us was good at keeping a regular sleeping schedule.

    We had breakfast-Humphrey from a bottle, me from a bag, then performed a long, complicated drama with Señor Elephant and Humphrey's left shoe.

    When the sun came up, I bundled Humphrey against the cool of the morning and strapped him into his stroller, which he didn't mind too much so long as I did a dorky song-and-dance while I put my own shoes and jacket on.

    We took a walk to the park, played on the swings and the short slide, and learned not to eat leaves or hypodermic needles.

    When we grew bored, I said, "Let's go see if Will made it home yet."

    Humphrey seemed okay with that, so I strolled his stroller to the bus stop. Then I decided that trying to maneuver both Humphrey and his stroller onto the bus was too large a parenting challenge, so we walked instead.

    Before we finished a mile, Humphrey was asleep, his little head bobbing against the padded seat as I wheeled him down the rough sidewalk.

    "You're not very good company when you're catatonic," I told him.

    He pouted his lips and wrinkled his nose, then his face went slack again.

    "Yeah, yeah. Stop chattering at me while I'm trying to sleep. I get it."

    We passed shattered storefront windows and immaculate hundred-year-old houses. We met few other people on the sidewalk, though buses and cars crowded the streets everywhere, honking and spouting a metallic taste into the air.

    I considered covering Humphrey's mouth and nose with something to filter the air, but I doubted it would help much.

    As the sun brightened the city, I pulled a gardening hat, sunglasses, and gloves from the pouch in the back of the stroller. I looked ridiculous in them, but walking was much more pleasant when the sun wasn't faintly stinging every exposed inch of my skin.

    The light and the heat bothered me less than other vampires, but I was dreaming of people-sickles by the time Humphrey and I finally reached Will's apartment building. We took the elevator up to the sixth floor and breathed air-conditioned air all the way down the hall. The cool air woke Humphrey, and I stopped in front of Will's door to find Humphrey's juice bottle and hand it to him.

    I knocked. Humphrey slapped the door, making a sound so quiet that Will wouldn't have heard it if he'd been standing right inside.

    But none of our noise brought Will to the door.

    "Where is he?" I asked Humphrey.

    Humphrey looked up at me and tried to fit his fist in his mouth.
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