It Can’t Be
I think I was the only one who didn’t suddenly have a rod up my ass.
Discussing the particulars of the pool had done its job… Sookie and Eric were completely unaware of how quickly the time had passed.
But once the doorbell rang they acted like we’d been found by a zombie horde. They were frozen. Sookie stared at me, completely unprepared for ‘the next step’… And Eric was just as confused because he had no idea of what to do.
I laughed at them on my way to answer the door and pointed at Sookie. “You are not allowed to cry until after Chloe leaves. Got it?”
There was nothing more than a whimper from her…
When I opened the door and made eye contact with Chloe’s father, we both started laughing. I knew him. It wasn’t like we were friends; we just knew one another in passing. Same country club. Different pet charities. “Sean O’Rourke.”
He shook my hand. “Eric Northman? I thought it was just a coincidence when Chloe told me her date’s name… I didn’t know you have kids.” Eric was already using Northman?
“Just one…” I stepped back to let them in. “I haven’t seen you at the club. Where have you been hiding?”
“I’ve been organizing a fundraiser.”
“How did you get harangued into that?”
He cringed while he answered, “I let it slip that I make my own hours.”
I laughed at him. “Is it so bad?”
“I’m supposed to say no so I don’t discourage you from making the same mistake.”
“You’re one hell of a recruiter… Chloe, Eric’s in the kitchen with his mom if you want to spare yourself from charitable…” There was no point in finishing. She was practically running through the foyer to get away from us.
Sean groaned. “I don’t know if she’s sick of hearing about Samaritan House or if she’s that nuts over your boy.”
“Does it make you feel better to know that I think he shit his pants when the doorbell rang?”
He smiled at me. “Yeah. I think it does… How much dating has he done?”
“None. His mother wouldn’t let him. This is ‘the first date’.”
“Thank God… Her too. She’s had the ‘boyfriends’ at school, but I’ve never let her go out on a date… just school stuff. I thought I’d be safe over the summer.”
“Sookie and I are going to the Jubilee after we grab dinner with friends. He knows, but he might not want her to know.”
He started laughing. “Me too. I’m dropping them off and then picking up my youngest and taking her and her friends… I’ve been told that lurking is allowed, but I’m not allowed to talk to them.”
“Sounds perfect. It should calm Sookie down enough that she can breathe. She’s freaking out.”
“She’s not the only one. I’m surprised Courtney hasn’t given me a damn heart attack… Caroline will kill me. I’m going to have to keep a cardiologist on call.”
“Wow. Three girls?”
He nodded. “17, 16 and 14. God hates me.”
I laughed as I led the poor, unfortunate son of a bitch to the kitchen. Even if I didn’t say it out loud, having an ‘Erica’ knock on my door a few weeks ago would’ve given me an extra set of worries. Fuck that there was a double standard. Guys like me (by extension, my son) were why Alcide needed to go out for drinks after the ultrasound that told him to buy pink instead of blue… he started researching guns and had a 400 year old tree removed from his property so that Rapunzel didn’t get any ‘sneaking out’ ideas… before Belle was ever born.
Eric and Chloe were standing at the bar (ass-rods in place) and swapping uncomfortable stares with Sookie while she put away pencils. It was adorable. “Well done! You three make the Gaza Strip look relaxed… Sookie, this is Sean O’Rourke. Sean, Sookie Stackhouse…”
She screwed on a tense smile and came over to shake his hand. In her heels, she wasn’t much shorter than the carrot-topped fire plug that took her hand rather than shake it. The man managed to have old school manners without being a pompous prick… Bill Compton needed lessons. “Nice to meet you.”
“Nice to meet you too… I’m not sure I’m allowed to say anything because I could embarrass someone.” Eric scowled at the back of her head.
“Same here. We should talk about them behind their backs later.”
She chuckled at him. “Call us as soon as the car door closes behind them?”
Eric was not amused. “Mom! Knock it off. That’s the kind of stuff that makes kids run away from home.”
She gave him a chilly look. “You’re preaching to the wrong choir, sweetie…” She didn’t have to say out loud that the injuries she’d gotten from her drunk father were better reasons to run away from home than having a mother who embarrassed him by caring about him.
He groaned as he rolled his eyes. “You and your damn trump cards…”
Sean snorted, “She isn’t the only one with a few trump cards. Let’s hit the road so that I can call your parents and share humiliating stories about you two. I’ve got one about cotton candy and flies.”
Chloe didn’t wait. She was still cringing when she grabbed Eric’s wrist and yanked him out of the house.
Sean and I stood on the stoop to make a show out of exchanging phone numbers and joked about taking shifts standing guard over the Tunnel Of Love line…
Once they were seen off, I found Sookie in the kitchen, pulling her lip. “Can I cry now?”
I put my arms around her back, completely aware of the goofy grin on my face. “No.”
“Why not? My baby is on his first date.”
“Because… My son told Chloe that his name is Eric Northman.”
Her face lit up. “Yeah!?”
I nodded. “Needlessly fretting over what could go wrong on a public date with 3 chaperones is hereby forbidden because it will bring me down.”
She giggled, “You got it… Wait. Three chaperones?”
“Sean is dropping them off and going back for his youngest daughter… and taking her to the Jubilee with friends. We’ll be able to text each other back and forth with updates while we lurk.”
Her arms tightened around my sides. “That is almost better than not letting them go out at all.”
“Don’t get ahead of yourself. They’ll have some time together unsupervised. There’s an hour between the time the Jubilee closes and her curfew.”
She gasped. “Oh God…”
“Stop. You heard our talk so you know he was offended when he made the connection between his date and sex. You have to trust him.”
She groaned. “I know that… I made fun of my project manager for freaking out when his wife found condoms in their son’s room… I should call him and apologize.”
“No. You should go change for dinner. You know how Alcide is. He’s still a dick about punctuality.”
No Jeep. No Vanquish. Sereti’s was busy enough that I had the chance to look for one of Alcide’s cars while searching for a place to park. He was 15 minutes early for everything, but even though he’d made reservations for 8:00 and it was 7:58, there was no sign of him.
If Emm was already making him late for things, it was going to be a huge handicap on her scorecard.
I was already disappointed for him, but when the greeter told us that the rest of our party was already waiting, I started trying to figure out why the hell Alcide would let Emm drive. He was ‘that guy’.
I smacked the back of his head and pulled out Sookie’s chair. “It’s exactly 8 and we’d have been here sooner if it weren’t for having to park in Delaware. I thought something was wrong when I didn’t see your car.”
He put his hand over where I hit him to pretend the slap hurt him. “Emm drove so that she could bail out if her kids burned down her house. Emm Dehbi, Eric Northman, Sookie Stackhouse.”
Emm smiled as the handshaking commenced. “Nice to meet you… Alcide tells me your son is on his first date?”
Sookie bit her lip and joked. “Don’t remind me. How old are yours?”
“17 and 11. It gets easier. Khalid has been girl crazy since he was 12… Amina is a blessing. Boys are ‘vile’.”
“When did he start dating?”
“Actual ‘dates’? Last year and I found my first grey hair the next morning. He’s a good boy though. I worry for nothing.”
Sookie smiled at her. “Me too… You know it’s kind of funny… I told a guy a few days ago that I was 14 when I had Eric so that he’d leave me alone, but it didn’t work…”
Emm started laughing, “That has got to be the most creative way anyone has ever thought of to ask how I ended up raising my niece and nephew…”
Sookie’s mouth fell open wide enough to actually get her foot into it. “Oh my God! No! I really did… Ask them. We were making fun of him for it.”
Sookie shook her head and put her hands over her ears. “Really. I didn’t want to know.”
Emm couldn’t have been more amused. She sipped her wine and waited for Sookie to move her hands. As soon as Sookie lifted her menu, Emm blurted, “My brother and his wife died in a car accident.”
Sookie clapped a hand over her mouth to cover that she was laughing. Not about Emm’s unpleasant family situation, her delivery. It took the waitress’s arrival for them to stop laughing and apologizing to each other.
Long story short… There was hope for Emm. Neither of Alcide’s wives, the ones that lasted longer than 6 days anyway, had anywhere near the points in their favor that Emm did… Without taking into consideration that she was prettier than both of them put together (and her slight accent added to her total package), her personality and sense of humor made her a ‘full win’… I gave it a week before he told me she was a keeper.
Our dinner with Emm was going much better than the one with Belle until Alcide’s phone started ringing while we waited for dessert. The rest of us kept talking while he answered it, but conversation fell away when we heard him say ‘she went into my email?’. The little bit I could gather from what he said and the ‘special’ way he clenched his jaw, made me pretty sure that his caller was Barbara and the topic was either Emm or Belle, but probably both.
Judging by the fact that Emm looked awkward for the first time, she’d caught on too.
The last thing he said was faked. ‘It’ll be alright’. Sookie managed to save his phone by snatching it out of his hand… everyone at the tables around us jumped when he hit the table instead of slamming his phone into it. “How does that shit work? How the fuck can someone be normal until they get divorce papers?”
Sookie rubbed his shoulder. “That depends on what she had to complain about this time.”
“It wasn’t my ex. It was Belle… She was tattling on her mother and warned me that Barb was bitching about me having plans this weekend. It’s not my weekend with Belle… She. Went. Into. My. Email. and found the hotel confirmation… So she’s convinced that I’m shacking up in Jackson and told Belle that she would be dropped off Thursday night whether I was home or not. Belle knows that we’re just packing, but Barb told her that I was lying to make myself look better.” Lovely woman.
Sookie snorted. “Oh, that’s easy then… She figured y’all would just live miserably ever after and you surprised her by breaking up with her… I’ll bet she just doesn’t want you to be the first one to be happy.”
His face was still set like he wanted to kill something. “Years of therapy?”
“Nope. That’s a girl thing. And it’s not the first time it’s happened to you. Remember Regina, Andrea and Nancy? They stalked you until they found a new boyfriend. Back then you could hide at our place or use me as a shield, but you’re stuck with her because of Belle.” Regina, Andrea and Nancy didn’t have anything on Tracy, Donna, Bea or Libby… But Sookie wasn’t around for them.
“No shit. Thanks for making me feel better.”
“Fuck her. Don’t let her have the satisfaction.”
I nodded. “I second that.”
Emm stayed quiet, but she looked like she was thinking about claiming to need to go to the bathroom as an excuse to get as far away from the conversation as possible.
Sookie smiled at him. “It’ll be fun. Belle can’t be a brat for the whole weekend so me and Eric will get to see what she’s like without her game-face on.”
“Ok. There’s that, but this is bullshit. Barb’s using Belle. It doesn’t fucking matter that there’s nothing to sabotage, Barb thinks that there is and she’s just fine with using Belle to chaperone her father. I’m fucking sick of it.”
Sookie shrugged, but before she could say anything, Emm offered, “Then you turn right around and make sure you get your weekend next week. Take Belle this weekend as ‘a favor’. Don’t swap weekends. Make sure she knows that you don’t consider having your daughter thrust at you as being a punishment. She can’t play games with you for long if you don’t play into her.” Uh oh… Emm had a spine too. She wasn’t uncomfortable because of the ex-wife crashing a date by proxy… She’d been trying to mind her own business… 6 months. They’d be married. She’d have a ring on her finger by Christmas as a minimum.
I had to agree with her. “Emm’s right. You don’t want Belle to feel like that anyway. Fuck Barb and the high-horse she rode in on. Bring Belle to Jackson with us and let Barb choke on how many kinds of fucking wrong she was.”
“Fine, but she’s going to call every five minutes.”
“You don’t have to answer it. You’ll have Belle with you and she’s the only reason you ever answer Barb’s calls anyway.”
Emm added, “And I’ll make sure to run into her while you’re out of town to prove you’re doing what you said be doing.”
He shook his head. “No. You should stay out of it.”
She raised her eyebrows. “I’m not suggesting I’d start a catfight, but she works at a department store. I’ll take Amina and Khalid shopping for school clothes, which I was planning to do anyway. I won’t have to say anything to her. Just seeing that I’m not in Jackson with you should shut her down enough… But I’ll shop in Macy’s instead of Nordstrom’s if you think it’ll start trouble.” KEEPER.
Alcide huffed. “If she wasn’t being a big enough pain in the ass to dig through my emails, then I’d say ‘go for it’, but there’s no telling… She could start something in front of your kids.”
Sookie started giggling. “Hey Emm…” Alcide and I shared an ‘uh oh’ look across the table.
Emm grinned back. “Yeah Sookie?”
“You know, I’m starting a new job next week… but I’m new to the area… Do you think you can help me find somewhere I can get some suits…?”
Emm wiggled her eyebrows, “I think I know of a few places.”
Sookie’s grin looked like evil incarnate. “What are you doing tomorrow?”
Alcide looked back and forth between the two of them before he started shaking his head and chuckling. “Don’t get arrested.”
Even though Sookie had enough fun at dinner that she mentioned how much she liked Emm, more specifically how much she liked Emm and Alcide together, her nerves still came back as soon as we were in the car.
Since it was after 9, the fairground was already starting to clear out, so parking wasn’t a problem. She whined when I told her that Sean had only been joking about calling as soon as he’d dropped Eric and Chloe off and had me texting him for an update before we were through the gate.
He called instead of texting. “They haven’t been alone that I’ve seen. They keep running into friends. They’ve been behaving unless you count that there’s some boy tagging along with them now. I don’t like the looks of him.”
“You don’t recognize him from her group of school friends?”
“No. Your boy seems to know him though.”
“Why don’t you like the looks of him?”
“Well the little shit looks like a farm hand for starters. And the girl he had riding his shoulders dresses like a slut.”
“Shorter than your boy. Blond. Dark tan. He’s wearing a t-shirt for Franklin High Football…”
“That would be Jason. Eric’s cousin. He’s 16. As long as Eric is behaving himself, I’m fine.”
“An arm over her shoulder is the worst I’ve seen. They were working their way towards the gate last time I saw them.”
“Good. Sookie will be happy to hear it.”
“Where were they going to go between closing and curfew?”
“He didn’t mention anything, but knowing him, food will be involved.”
When I slid my phone into my pocket, Sookie bounced and her face made her look like she was in pain. “Well?”
“Sean seems to care about how much fun they’re having as you do. All he cares about is that they’re keeping their hands to themselves.”
“Don’t put it like that… I want him to have… You know what? Take me home.”
“You don’t want to check on him?”
“Yes… Yes… Yes, I do… But I don’t want to be ‘that mom’ either. You’re right we should trust him.”
“Are you sure? I don’t want you to start freaking out even more when we get home.”
She squeezed her eyes closed and jerked her head up and down. “I’m sure. Now get me out of here before I change my mind.”
As soon as we got home, Sookie called to order ‘therapeutic’ pizzas and went to change into her PJs.
She was trying to dial back how stressed she was… I might’ve laughed at her if I wasn’t so proud of how hard she was trying.
Sookie was channel surfing and sipping a beer by the time I changed and got to the den. “What are you in the mood for?”
“You pick. You’re the one trying to distract yourself.”
She huffed and turned the TV off, then tossed the remote onto the sofa. “The goddamn networks have it in for me. 16 freaking Candles. Romeo and freaking Juliet. American freaking Beauty. 10 freaking Things I Hate About You…”
I laughed at her and shoved the remote down between the cushions. “I have movies. Something romance free… Dawn Of The Dead? Fight Club? Beerfest? Full Metal Jacket?”
“You know, I looked through your collection… You have every single movie Eric does.” He’d said the same thing.
“He has good taste.”
“I wish I had my movies… Finnegan Begin Again, Murphy’s Romance…”
“Not The Notebook or YaYa Sisterhood?”
She jumped up when she heard the doorbell. “Nope. Those damn things flashback from the old farts. Pick something violent while I get my meds with extra cheese.”
I’d settled for The Mummy and was just waiting for the home screen when Sookie came back with a stack of pizzas and a mountain of extras piled on top. Parmesan, salt, red pepper flakes, ranch dressing and extra beer…
I couldn’t help but laugh at her. “Poor Alcide missed his chance at calling you Pizza The Hut.”
She blew a raspberry at me. “Bite me. What’d you pick?”
“The Mummy. Dead things and chase scenes.” It was either that or Paranormal Activity, but I didn’t want to give her nightmares.
“Oooooh. Good call.”
“Is there enough for me to have a piece?” Four pizzas. There’d better be.
“Maybe. Do you still like Garbage Can?” Sausage, pepperoni, ham, olives, onions, peppers, mushrooms…
She pulled one of the pizzas out of the stack and handed it to me. “Hurry up and get your fill before Eric gets home. I only got him two.”
“It’s going to cost a fortune to feed him when he goes to college.”
She giggled while she drizzled ranch over her pizza and shook her head when she noticed that I still salted mine. “I’m already thinking about that… I think it might be more than tuition.”
“You’ll have to explain how to make friends who work at restaurants for the freebies.”
“I know. I didn’t think it was possible for anyone to eat as much as I do.”
“You’re not as bad as you used to be, but I hear that metabolism slows down when you get old.”
She laughed, “Can we visit Pam while we’re in Lanesville?”
I busted out laughing so fast, pizza fell out of my mouth. “Oh. My. God! YES! You’re what, just 10 pounds heavier than you were then?”
She wiggled her head with a shit eating grin. “9. What about her?”
“I don’t know… But she shows up on satellite pictures now. She was just as big in her Christmas picture as she was in high school.”
She covered her mouth when she started laughing. “Pre-op?”
I nodded. “And she had a couple surgeries since then too.”
“How many kids did she have?”
“You met Yves and Coco… She named the next one Christian… The twins got stuck with Betsy and Diane.”
“She pressed her luck.”
“You cursed her.”
“No… I mentioned triplets and it still hasn’t happened.”
“Out of curiosity… What does your family know about me?”
“That you still don’t know how to make a proper burgoo.”
She tilted her head to the side. “Seriously.”
I shrugged. “It’s not like I was going to ask any of them if they’d seen you. They’ll probably just think I’m a bigger asshole because they didn’t know about Eric.”
“Yeah. I’m the ‘rich’ relative who’s ‘too good’ to visit his family.”
“You really don’t want to go back, do you?”
“No. Not at all. If Eric didn’t want to meet his great grandparents, I wouldn’t. Like ever.”
“Have you taken a lot of time off of work?”
“I haven’t been into the office except to grab a few things, but I’ve been working from home. Why?”
“Because… if we plan it right, we could collect a few more Wrights so the trip won’t be a complete wash. There’s what? 6 in Indiana?”
She sang, “Samara.”
“Ooooh… house porn.”
She giggled and launched herself off of the couch without explanation and came back with her laptop. She smudged pizza grease and ranch on the lid and went right to work on her little mission…
The music on the movie’s menu screen started to annoy me after a few minutes so I turned on the lamp and killed the TV.
I watched her face over her screen. She kept shoving pizza into her mouth while she worked… smiling, biting her lip, grumbling that the Wynant house had been destroyed by a fire and called the owner a blasphemer for not rebuilding.
She finally scooted closer, setting her laptop on my legs. “I bet I could hold off Russell for 4 extra days.”
“I guess we would’ve spent two days in Lanesville, right. One day there and one day back. Four altogether?”
I nodded. “Sure.”
She smiled and pointed to the screen. “So instead of straight back, we drive up to Gary through South Bend, Marion, so on… spend a couple of days collecting…”
“I’m not done… We can add a day at the jump if you want to drive through St. Louis to see the Pappas and Kraus houses. A teaser.”
I nodded. “Still sold.”
“NINE.” Nine Wright buildings in one trip. Nine.
“So. Fucking. Sold.”
She laughed. “This way… your first real road trip with Eric won’t be something that’s going to make you crabby.”
“And he’ll at least have fun laughing at us building dorks.”
“Your pitch has improved. A lot.”
“With three of us to share the driving…”
“Another perk for Eric…”
She nodded again. Her smile got bigger the more excited I got. “I’ll rent a huge SUV so there’s plenty of room to spread out and we’ll pick it up early so he can get used to handling something bigger.”
I laughed, “I was just thinking the same thing.”
She bit her lip. “Less pissed about Lanesville now?”
“Where?” Fuck Lanesville and the assholes I shared a gene pool with. Road tip. Sookie. Eric. Wright. Christmas came early.
She was giggling when I pulled her onto my lap for a kiss. “In a few months, when we start touring colleges, we can rack up a few more.”
“Do you think it’ll be obvious when I insist on touring Florida Southern?”
She started laughing. “Yes! We really are dorks.”
Eric startled her when his feet hit the coffee table. The noise was the first clue that we weren’t alone anymore. It was barely 10 o’clock. “I’ll second that… What clued you in?”
I let Sookie go so that she could relax back to the couch. “We’ve added a couple days to our trip to Lanesville for Wright houses.”
He grabbed a pizza box and the salt shaker. He salted the whole pizza instead of one slice at a time. “No shit!? Cool. I’ve never seen one in person. Well… Fountainhead, there’s so many trees and all.” I was surprised the houses would appeal to him. I was expecting to have to re-pitch the perks of driving. “Just Indiana or…?”
“A couple in St. Louis on the way there.”
“Hey! You think we’ll have time for the Arch? I know it isn’t a Wright or anything, but it’s still cool.”
I nodded. “I think we can do that… How did things go?”
He scowled. “I don’t want to talk about it. Besides, weren’t y’all spying on us?”
I shook my head. “We were going to, but your mother decided to come home at the last minute. Why aren’t we talking about your date?” I was scared shitless that something I’d said fucked him up.
“The Jubilee was a blast. I’m actually hoping to go back tomorrow night with Jason and his girlfriend if it’s alright with y’all.” Uh oh.
“What happened?” Sookie looked like she was biting her tongue rather than just being quiet.
“Everything was going just fine… And you’re a freaking PIMP. Everything worked… She held my hand and leaned… But as soon as we got in the cab to go grab something to eat, that stuck up bitch called me sweet for putting up with my ‘trashy cousin’. Fuck her. CURBED. I didn’t even walk her to her door.”
Sookie snorted out a laugh and immediately apologized. “Was Jason acting up?”
He shook his head and shoved half a piece of pizza into his mouth. “That’s the thing. I don’t think Jason or Vickie did anything ‘wrong’ except for mention that they both have jobs and go to public school. Like I said. Curbed. And judging by her friends that we ran into, I want to visit Dermot first. All of Fintan’s drones were like junior Comptons…” He stood up and grabbed another pizza box to take both. “Y’all go back to your building boners. I’ve got deleting to do. I’ll be in my office.”
Sookie stared at the empty doorway for a minute before she grabbed another piece of pizza and her laptop to throw herself into our itinerary.
She cringed without looking up at me. “I’m disappointed for him and ashamed of myself.”
“But you’re going to stop because it’s normal to be nervous about kids starting to date… Be proud of him for having standards.”
She smirked. “You could find a perk to war and famine.”
“Without a need for military, unemployment would skyrocket and without hungry people, the wealthy would have to look for another charitable tax right-off.”
She giggled at me and kept working.
We spent the next hour planning out our trip. Hotel reservations, car rentals, downloading directions for each leg of the trip and saving the websites for each house. We got more excited with every detail and I had every intention of replacing the 16 year old gallery of pictures with our new collection. I was already thinking about framing and matting options. We got carried away enough to start joking about excuses to make trips to Wisconsin and Minnesota too.
While Sookie tidied up the den I went to check in with Eric. “We’re turning in.”
“K. Goodnight… Hey, thanks for calling mom off.”
“I didn’t. I was surprised. We were at the gate, about to go into the Jubilee when she asked me to bring her home. She was a wreck, but she didn’t want to ruin your fun.”
He snorted. “It would’ve been nice if my date hadn’t.”
“But everything was fine until you realized she’s a snob?”
“Yeah. Shame too. Her dad seemed alright. They’re probably just good at hiding it… the silver spoon thing. At least it came out early instead of me having to defend myself for being polite to a waitress.”
Sookie had been going through the pretense of staying in the guest room until Eric went to his room, but she was right behind me as I went to my room.
As soon as I was settled into the bed, she snuggled back to me. “Did he say anything?” I should’ve known she was still thinking about Eric’s date failure.
“He said that at least it happened before he wasted a lot of time with her.”
She elbowed me as she started laughing. “Goddamn it. How is optimism a genetic trait?”
I couldn’t help but laugh. “He likes his eggs over easy like me too. It happens.”
“He’s unlike you enough to dump a girl for family…”
“He’s lucky enough to have a family worth defending.”
She laughed and elbowed me again. “You’re still doing it, Mr. Brightside!”
Eric yelled from downstairs, “Hey! If y’all are laughing, you’re doing it wrong!”
Sookie giggled and whispered, “If I hadn’t heard your talk, I’d think you gave him too much information.” It didn’t take a nanosecond to decide to fuck with him since he didn’t know she heard it.
“Yell at me… then have a conniption on the way to the guest room.”
She rolled over enough to give me an excited look. “WHAT DID YOU SAY TO HIM!?”
It was hard to not laugh. Thank God I didn’t have to keep a straight face. “NOTHING! SOOKIE, I…!?
“BULLSHIT… WHY WOULD HE SAY SOMETHING LIKE THAT THEN!?”
“I DON’T KNOW…” She got out of the bed and started ‘storming out’. “HE WAS JOKING! SOOKIE, WHERE ARE YOU GOING!?” I got it out just in time for her to slam the bedroom door shut behind her and just a second later, the other door slammed shut too…
I only waited a second to ‘go after her’… I was pounding on the door, pleading my case when Eric thundered up the stairs. Giving him a dirty look was harder than I thought it would be. “Shit. I’m sorry. I didn’t realize she’d think…”
“Yeah, well, she does. Great job. One sentence made her think I gave you a triple X sex talk…” He looked like he was going to be sick.
Eric knocked on the door. “Mom! He didn’t. I swear. I was just…”
She flung the door open with a shit eating grin on her face. “Joking?”
He gaped for a minute before he spun around and paced down the length of the hall with his hands on his head… then he realized I was laughing my ass off with Sookie. “YOU WERE IN ON THAT!”
I took Sookie’s hand and started leading her back to my room, taking my turn to wear a ‘gotcha’ grin. She giggled, looking over her shoulder, “It was his idea. G’night baby.”
We were still chuckling while we’d settled into bed. I still hadn’t heard Eric go back downstairs. Apparently, he was still where we left him when he growled, “Assholes.”
I think I was still laughing when I dozed off. I know Sookie was.