He twisted himself and slid down into the house. The boy was waiting for him, as he often was after watch and looked at him, eager for the latest news from outside.
“Nothing, as usual.” said Arthur. He still felt guilty at not telling James about the men he had seen, now nine weeks ago. He shrugged awkwardly to cover up his compounding lie.
James smiled a weak smile and hugged Arthur around the leg.
“I don’t like it when you’re out there for too long, I get lonely in here.” he said. Arthur noticed as he stood facing the boy, holding him by both shoulders, how white he was. It had been months since he last took him outside to help tend to some of the equipment. He would have to take him out again soon, when it was safe.
“Trust me, it’s worse out there.” Arthur replied in earnest and smiled back. He picked James up and gave him a hug. “How about dinner?”