I have been noticing Sly seeming pretty bummed out these days, even more so than usual. He looks stressed and hasn’t slept in ages. Despite his tired out appearance, he did his best to keep his smile and I admire him for that. He used to rarely smile and even now he still isn’t exactly all smiles and cheeriness but once you get to know him you can tell if he’s happy. 

   He is always happy around his friends. However, lately he seems tired. I thought maybe it might be a good idea to cheer him up, so I made him a cup of my favorite tea. It’s always been a great pick-me-up for when I’m down. 

   I knocked on the door to his office before barging in. He was resting his head on his desk and, taking a good look at him, I could’ve sworn he had bags under his eyes. I knew why. Everyone knew why. Everyone knew about Sly’s “mission”. 

   “I made you some tea”, I said, placing a steaming mug down onto his desk.

   “Thanks”, he mumbled, not opening his eyes. He barely moved after that. He looked almost dead. I don’t know but at the moment I thought small talk would be a good idea rather than just leave him alone. 

   “You know, the tea I made, it’s a really expensive and rare kind of tea. I’m lucky I got my hands on this bag. A friend got it for me this time.”

   Sly paid no attention to me. I continued to talk.

   “It’s from this fancy teahouse called The Elysian TeaHouse. The tea leaves themselves are super sweet but I like adding spices and milk when I’m brewing them just so I can, you know, balance out the flavor and give it a bit of a kick.”

   Still no response from him.

  “Well, give it a try”, I coaxed, “Hope you like it.”

   He sluggishly raised his head, pulled the mug close to him and took a sip. I watched as his face froze for a moment. His expression showed he was savoring the flavor of the tea. After a brief moment he finally said, “It’s good”. I was brimming with delight. And I was even happier when I heard him say, “Thanks, Remy”.


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