Na manhã seguinte, Charlie levou Raymond para tomar café da manhã em um restaurante barato perto do hotel.
Uma garçonete bonita chegou à mesa deles. “Bom dia”, ela disse.
Raymond leu o nome da garota na frente do vestido dela. “Sally Dibbs”, ele disse.’460192 ‘
Sally Dibbs ficou surpresa. ‘Como você sabe o meu número de telefone?’ ela perguntou.
Charlie também ficou surpreso. Ele olhou para Sally e depois para Raymond.
“Como você sabe o seu número, Raymond?” ele perguntou.
– A lista telefônica – murmurou Raymond. ‘No hotel. A lista telefônica.
“Você leu a lista telefônica!” Charlie disse. Ele se virou para a garçonete e riu. “Ele se lembra de coisas”, disse ele. Então ele perguntou a Raymond o que ele queria para o café da manhã.
“Esta é terça-feira”, disse Raymond. ‘Café da manhã é café e bolos.’
“Tudo bem”, Charlie disse para a garçonete. “Vamos tomar café e bolos.”
A garçonete foi buscar a comida. De repente, uma expressão ansiosa apareceu no rosto de Raymond. “Onde estão os palitos de dente?” ele perguntou.
“Não precisamos de palitos para bolos”, disse Charlie.
Raymond shook his head from side to side. ‘Where are the toothpicks?’ he repeated. ‘Where are the toothpicks?’
Charlie closed his eyes and counted to ten. ‘All right, Raymond,’ he said. ‘I’ll get yoy some toothpicks. But I’m also going to make a phone call. I want you to wait for me here.’
Charlie was on the phone. ‘Dr. Bruner, this is Charlie Babbitt’.
Dr. Bruner was silent for a second. Then he asked calmly, ‘Where are you, son?’
‘That’s not important,’ Charlie said. ‘What is important is who I’m with.’
‘You have to bring Raymond back, Mr. Babbitt,’ the doctor said.
‘Yes, I will,’ Charlie said. ‘When I get my one and a half million dollars, sir. All I want is my half of the money.’
‘I can’t do that, Mr. Babbitt. You know I can’t.’
Charlie turned to watch Raymond. He wasn’t at their table! Then he saw him: Raymond was looking all round the restaurant. He still did not have his toothpicks.
‘Bring him back, Mr. Babbitt,’ Dr. Bruner repeated. ‘Bring him back now.’
‘I have not kidnapped him,’ Charlie said. This was something which worried him. Was Susanna right? Was Charlie the Businessman now Charlie the Criminal?
‘I know you haven’t kidnapped him,’ Dr. Bruner said. ‘Raymond is not a prisoner at Wallbrook. He’s always free to leave us.’
Charlie breathed more easily.
‘But we know how to look after him here,’ Dr. Bruner continued. ‘We know what he needs. You do not know anything about Raymond, Mr. Babbitt.’
Raymond was still looking round the restaurant for toothpicks. Charlie watched him anxiously.
‘I’m Raymond’s brother,’ Charlie said into the phone, ‘and my lawyer says I can get custody of him. If you want Raymond back, give me my money.’
‘It’s not your money, Mr. Babbitt,’ the doctor was saying.
Charlie was not listening. He was waving to the waitress.
‘Toothpicks!’ he shouted and he pointed at Raymond. ‘He wants toothpicks!’
‘I cannot give you what you want, Mr. Babbitt,’ Dr. Bruner continued.
At last Sally gave Raymond a full box of toothpicks. Raymond took the box back to their table.
Charlie was getting angry. ‘Dr. Bruner, you have made a big mistake!’ he said. He put the phone down and walked over to where Raymond was sitting. ‘We’re leaving, Raymond.’
Raymond stood up quickly and knocked the box of toothpicks off the table. The box fell to the floor and broke open. The toothpicks went everywhere.
‘Oh, Raymond!’ Charlie shouted.
But Raymond was looking down at the toothpicks on the floor. ‘Eighty-two,’ he muttered. ‘Eighty-two, eighty-two, eighty-two. Toothpicks.’
Charlie shook his head. ‘Ray, there’s a lot more than eighty-two toothpicks down here.’
Raymond’s expression didn’t change. ‘Eighty-two, eighty-two, eighty-two. Of course that’s two hundred and forty-six. Toothpicks.’
Charlie turned to Sally Dibbs. ‘How many toothpicks in the box?’ he asked.
The girl picked up the box and read the number off it. ‘Two hundred and fifty.’
Charlie smiled at his brother. ‘That was very close, Raymond,’ he said. ‘Come on, let’s go. We’re going to the airport. I have to go back to Los Angeles.’
As they walked to the door, Sally Dibbs called after them.
‘He was right! There were two hundred and forty-six toothpicks on the floor. The other four are still in the box.’
At the airport Charlie telephoned his office. The news was not good. Both the bank and the customer for the Lamborghini cars were still very unhappy. Charlie needed to get back to Los Angeles fast.
Charlie picked up his bag. ‘OK, Raymond,’ he said. ‘We’ve got to move quickly. Our plane leaves in six minutes. Look, there it is out there.’
Charlie pointed out through the window at the plane. Raymond suddenly looked very anxious.
‘Crash,’ he muttered. ‘That plane … crashed in August. August 16, 1987. One hundred and fifty-six people were… They were all…’
‘That was a different plane, Ray,’ Charlie said. ‘This is a beautiful plane. This one is safe.’
‘Crash,’ Raymond muttered. ‘Crash and burn.’
Charlie did not know what to do. They had only four minutes to catch the plane. ‘We have to fly home, Ray,’ he said. ‘It’s important. What did you think we were doing here? This is an airport. This is where they keep the planes! Come on!’
Charlie put his hand on Raymond’s arm. Raymond put his hand to his mouth and bit it. Then he screamed and began to shake all over.
For a second, Charlie just looked at his brother with an astonished expression. Then he saw that he had to calm Raymond down. It’s OK, Raymond,’ he said quickly. ‘It’s OK. We’ll drive to Los Angeles. It will take three days, but we’ll drive. No planes.’
Raymond stopped screaming. His body stopped shaking and slowly the anxious expression left his face.
‘I’m sorry, Raymond,’ Charlie said softly. ‘I’m sorry I upset you.’
Charlie se virou e começou a sair do aeroporto. Um segundo depois, Raymond o seguiu.