“Sit down” Nichelle told Bernie.
Bernie sat. His face was a mask of concern. “What’s this about?”
“This story,” she started. She shook her head. “This is big. And horrible. And I don’t–” She fought against imminent tears.
“Whoa,” said Bernie. “Take a breath. Calm down. Tell me what’s going on.”
As Nichelle took a long shuddering breath to compose herself, Bernie’s phone chimed. He answered. “Yes? Yeah, I’ll talk to him.” He paused, then said, “Yes, Mr. Phillips, what can I do for you?”
“No,” hissed Nichelle.
Bernie motioned to silence her. “Go on.” His concern darkened to anger.