by Christine Nightstar
The next few weeks following the capture of the Clock were very busy for the Deltonios, Betty Canardo, and Ticks. Beside dating Tina Platt, alias Platinum of the Metal Men, Ticks had been studying almost constantly for his civil service exam and the Police Academy entrance examination. He passed both examinations with the highest recorded scores ever on the written exams.
Frank and Mama were busy throughout the next few months with catering parties and other spring events. With his help, Ticks made it possible to keep them from being too overwhelmed at this time like they’d been in previous years. They were kept busy with the just the catering alone, leaving Frank Jr. and the twins to run the deli. Using the reason that they were needed at home, they arranged to have their homework brought home to them daily by their friends. Frank Jr. didn’t have the intense cleaning fixation his father had, while Cleo and Alicia baked the breads a bit differently than Mama did. It was hard for all parties not to stumble over each other at times in the kitchen or behind the meat counter.
Betty updated the schedules and kept track of things like she did every year. There was only one argument that happened between Mama and the twins. It was over some of the grains used for the breads. Due to all the business on both ends, the twins had used up the last of the grains Mama liked to use without marking it on the order sheet. The fight lasted for quite awhile before Betty said that if they’d stop fighting and update the inventories like they were supposed to, they would have found those grains in the storage area.
Ticks once caught Frank and Junior in an argument before Betty came in as well. Junior was mad at his father because the sausage grinder wasn’t cleaned out the night before, and he couldn’t make the proper sausages because of it, while Frank argued that it was Junior’s job to clean out the grinder every night and not his.
While the two were arguing, Ticks went behind the meat counter with a bucket of soapy water, cleaned the grinders — all three of them — and wondered why neither Frank nor Junior used the other two. Pouring the dirty water down the drain, Ticks rinsed out the bucket, then filled it with a couple of inches of water at the bottom and threw it at the two.
“Why’d you do that for, Ticks?” Frank asked indignantly.
“We’re soaked!” cried Junior. “I can’t run the deli like this!”
“That’s the price you pay for arguing over something so ridiculous when you have two other sausage grinders to use, and you still have coffee to make for the morning crowd,” Ticks replied evenly.
Later, when Mama heard about the incident, she just laughed and said this showed Trenton really was just one of the family now, as she would’ve done the same thing.
On June 18, 1988, Patrolman Trenton Avery graduated from the Police Academy and joined the Gotham City SWAT Team straight out of the Academy.