Family Affairs Ch. 47byD.C. Roi©
Passion In James County XIX: Family Affairs
Matt and Mary didn't know what to do when they got to Tom Forrester's condo and found it locked and apparently unoccupied.
"Where could he be?" Mary asked. The longer they went without finding Rick, the more anxious she got.
"Hey, maybe he went to Dianna's place," Matt said. "Come on, let's go over there and see."
He drove quickly through the falling snow to Dianna's house, parked the car at the curb, then he and Mary got out, walked up to the house, and rang the doorbell.
"Hi, Dianna," Matt said when she opened the door. "Is Rick here?"
"Ah..." Dianna responded. She wasn't sure what to say. She looked over her shoulder at Rick, then at Matt. She nodded. "He...he told me about what he saw. He's real upset."
Matt took a deep breath and said, "I need to talk with him."
"I don't know," Dianna said. "He's pretty upset."
"Who is it?" Rick asked. He appeared in the hallway. "What the fuck do you want?" he growled when he saw Matt.
"Rick, we need to talk," Matt said.
"Goddammit! I don't want to talk to you!" Rick yelled. "Jesus Christ, Matt, I saw what you and Mom were doing!"
"Rick, give me a chance to explain," Matt said. He wanted that much, at least. "Look, Rick, we've been friends a long time..."
"Some friend you are!" Rick snorted. "Jesus Christ! What kind of friend screws his buddy's mom?"
"Look, just listen to what I have to say," Matt said. "Give me that much."
"Aw fuck!" Rick snapped. He turned and stomped back to the living room.
Dianna wasn't sure what to do. She looked at Matt, who was near tears. "Go in there," she said, "go talk to him."
Not sure how it would turn out, Matt walked into the living room. "Look, Rick," he said, "Mary...your mother and I aren't trying to hurt you."
"Yeah..." Rick said and glared at him. "What the hell are you trying to do then?"
"You know me," Matt said, "You know I've never gone out much. Not like you did, anyhow. I mean girls just didn't seem to like me, and I was scared to ask them out. I didn't want them to turn me down."
Rick looked at his friend. Matt was encouraged. At least Rick was letting him talk and seemed to be listening.
"Anyhow," Matt continued, "I've had a crush on your mom for a real long time. She's so beautiful and..." He kept going, telling his friend how he and Mary had wound up becoming lovers. "I mean, it wasn't like we set out to do that to hurt you. It...our relationship...it just happened and...and I'm not sorry it did."
"Jesus, Matt!" Rick stood up and started to pace. "That's crazy! All right, sure, I can accept that, maybe, you got carried away once. Shit, it's happened to me plenty of times. But you kept doing it! That's...that's sick!"
"Why?" Matt asked. "Why is it sick? There's something else you need to know about all this."
"What else is there?" Rick asked.
"I'm in love with your mom...Mary," Matt said. "What she and I have is a lot more than just a fling. I don't want our relationship to end. I want to marry her." There, he'd said it.
Rick began pacing again. "I don't fucking believe this!" he muttered. "Jesus Christ! Goddammit! Matt, that's crazy! You and Mom can't get married!"
"Why is it crazy?" Matt asked. "Mary's beautiful...and she doesn't seem older than me, and, well, I don't know any other way to put it, I love her. I can't explain why, or how, it's just the way I feel."
Matt didn't realize that Mary had come in and was standing next to Dianna in the doorway, listening.
"Maybe I am crazy," Matt went on, "but I know how I feel. I love Mary, I want to be with her. Christ! Like I said, I want to marry her."
Rick looked at his friend and smiled tentatively. "That sure as hell would be a trip, wouldn't it?" he said. "If you and Mom got married, I'd have a step-father who's younger than me."
"I never thought about that," Matt said, feeling for the first time since he began talking that Rick might just becoming around. "But you're not that much older than me. Tell you what, when I do get to be your step-father, I promise not to be too strict."
"Goddamn right you won't," Rick said. He stopped, turned, and looked at his friend. "You know, all this is going to take some getting used to." He laughed and shook his head. "Shit, if you guys really are in love, why the hell shouldn't you get married? Hell, maybe I'm just as crazy as you are!" He walked to Matt and pulled his friend into a bear-hug.
Matt hugged his friend back and then felt other arms move around them. He looked. It was Mary!
"Hi, Mom," Rick said, turning to hug her. "Look, I'm sorry I ran out of the house like that, but, you know..." He shrugged. "It's OK, now. Matt's explained the whole thing."
"I know," Mary said, sniffling a little. "I was standing over there. I heard him. He was quite eloquent. And what he said goes for me, too."
"You mean you guys might really get married?" Rick said.
"I'm not sure about that," Mary said, "but I do know I'm not going to give Matt up."
"Hey, all right!" Rick said. He looked past Matt and saw Dianna standing in the doorway. "What do you think about all this?" he asked.
Dianna shrugged. She wasn't sure where she fit into this new and rather odd family setup.
"Hey, guys," Rick said, "I promised Dianna I'd help her study for her math test. You want to get out of here so we can get to work?"
"OK," Matt said. "Come on, Mary, let's go home. It looks to me like Rick's OK." He turned to leave.
"Just a minute," Mary said. "Dianna, can I talk to you privately for a minute?"
"Sure," the younger woman replied. The two of them walked into the kitchen.
"I need to ask a big favor of you, Dianna," Mary said. "I'd like it if what you heard tonight stays between the four of us for now."
"Sure," Dianna said.
"At least until the school year is over," Mary continued. "I think it's best my relationship with Matt doesn't become public knowledge."
"I understand," Dianna said.
"Good," Mary said. She gave Dianna a hug and kissed her on the cheek. "You're a very special young lady. I'm glad Rick's finally settling down with someone like you."
Dianna felt her face get hot. "Ah...thanks, Mrs. Forrester," she murmured.
The two women returned to the living room. Again, Mary and Matt started for the door.
"Hey, you two," Rick said.
Matt and Mary turned.
Rick grinned and said, "Don't wait up for me."