New Winslow S6E37
Cleo had canceled her delivery shift today in order to bring Edie to rehearsal. They’d said they were fine, they were just going to stay home tonight. There was plenty of time until the tour, they could miss another night. But it had been three days since they’d gotten temporarily trapped in New Winslow and they’d canceled with Ryan and Tyler the morning after. Which was totally understandable, but since then, Edie had gotten out of bed for maybe a total of ten hours. Cleo had hoped they’d snap out of it on their own and go to rehearsal tonight, but that hadn’t happened.
“It’s Framingham, not New Winslow,” Cleo pointed out as Edie reluctantly pulled on fresh clothes. “It’ll be alright.”
She felt bad being irritated and did her best to keep it contained. The last thing Edie needed right now was for Cleo to say, “I told you so.” But she hadn’t expected getting hit with the curse to wreck them like this, not to the extent it clearly had. She was realizing that the shock wasn’t going to fade on its own. But maybe getting back to their usual routine would be enough to help move the process along.
That was what seemed to help people who weren’t used to the curse. Not that she’d ever brought any newcomers back to New Winslow in the past. But once in a while, someone passing through town would get trapped. She remembered it from her early teenage years, before Andrew and his family had arrived. A traveler taking a wrong turn would be unable to leave. Usually a family member who came for a visit. Once they left, the usual advice was to immediately go back to their normal life. And it seemed to work, which was why she was being so strict with Edie.
“I made sandwiches too,” Cleo continued as Edie pulled a brush through their short hair, detangling it with slow movements. “We can eat them in the car.”
“I’ll drive myself,” Edie murmured. “You don’t have to.”
Oh yes, she fucking did. Plus, she’d rented a couple hours in one of the other rooms in the studio building so that she could sit down and really focus on her album while Edie was in rehearsal with The Blossom Step. Trying to work at her mother’s house wasn’t conducive to any good results. Working at home was fine, but it was easy to get distracted. At the practice space, she’d have no choice but to work on her music. Cleo had paid good money for that time and wasting it would be almost a sin.
Edie seemed like they were in better spirits by the time they pulled up outside the old studio space. They were actually holding a conversation with Cleo, which was promising. It was about her album, but she’d take that bit of stress if it meant Edie was feeling better.
Cleo walked with them to the rehearsal room, where Ryan and Tyler were already getting set up. They both greeted them warmly and Cleo could tell Ryan especially was eager to be back on good terms with her. Once it seemed like Edie was truly going to be part of the rehearsal, Cleo said goodbye and headed over to the smaller practice room down the hall.
About an hour later, she was in the zone. The song she’d been struggling with all week was actually coming together and she had an inkling of a new song somewhere behind it. After months of feeling uninspired, things were finally coming together.
Cleo was so attuned with what she was doing that the knock at the door tore her back to reality with an almost physical pain. She looked up and saw Tyler standing in the window.
Cleo reached over and opened the door for him. “What’s up?” she asked, eager to wrap up whatever he had to say and get back to work.
“Did Edie get stuck in New Winslow?”
Cleo almost dropped her guitar, catching it as it bounced off of her foot with a vibrating clang. “What?”
Tyler stepped into the room, closing the door carefully behind himself. “They’ve been acting really off and I know they said you guys were going to a birthday party in New Winslow the other night. Did they get stuck?”
Shit, Cleo had no idea how to answer this. Tyler was watching her, and he clearly already knew the answer. “Yeah,” Cleo finally admitted. “For about an hour.”
“Damn,” Tyler let out a low whistle. “That’s rough.”
‘How did you know about that?”
Tyler laughed. “I grew up in Belchertown,” he said. “It’s a secret, but it’s not that secret.”
Cleo thought back to the tour last year, all the energy she’d spent hiding it from them as she dealt with the fact that Andrew was trapped and she wasn’t. “Does Ryan know?”
Tyler shrugged. “I haven’t asked,” he said. “He’s not from New England, so maybe, maybe not. It really messed with them though, huh?”
“It’s been a few days and I’m only here because I didn’t think they’d actually go to practice if I didn’t drive them,” Cleo said. “I’m sure they’ll be fine in a little bit, but…”
She wasn’t sure how to end that. Tyler nodded. “Have you ever been there?” Cleo asked.
“Fuck no,” Tyler said. “I have no reason to risk getting stuck. I know you do, and I guess it’s part of it for Edie now. But I’m not going there.”
The honesty was refreshing. “Good call,” she said. “If it weren’t for my mom, I don’t think I’d go back now. I think I got too comfortable, even though my best friend is stuck there.”
“Like I said, you have reasons,” Tyler said with a shrug. “Can’t argue that. Alright, I’ll let you get back to work. I just wanted to make sure there wasn’t something else we should be aware of.”
He smiled at her, then slipped out the door, leaving Cleo to try to pick up the broken fragments of her focus.