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Mother's Day

Marco was in the main gallery of the museum, having just given directions to Roger about today's display, which featured the French artist and educator, Jean-Léon Gérôme (1824-1904), and thus he did not notice the old museum curator's approach.

"Have a cigar," Clovis said jovially, startling his assistant.

Marco recovered quickly. He turned to face his boss and friend, taking the offered cigar.

"What's the occasion?" he asked.

Clovis grinned and struck a match, offering Marco a light. "Actually, you should be the one who is handing these out. You're a father."

Marco leaned forward to accept the light but then froze. "When?" he asked, cigar forgotten.

"This morning. Rosemary has given you a son."

"I need to see her," Marco said anxiously. "Where is she?"

"Far away from here, old friend. You cannot see her now regardless. It was a difficult birth--she'll need time to recover." Clovis started to call Roger over to share the news, but Marco grabbed him by the elbow.

"Is she all right?"

"Rosemary is fine. Just worn out." Clovis reached out and removed Marco's hand from his elbow. "Calm down, will you, Marco? She will be traveling here in a couple of weeks. You'll be able to see her and your son." Clovis started away then to talk to Roger, but once again, Marco stopped him.

"Wait! My son...what is his name?"

"Henry," replied Clovis, smiling. He turned then and walked towards Roger, pulling another cigar from his coat pocket.


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