Man of the House Ch. 05byclearwinston©
Mom was dressed to the nines. I'd never seen her so beautiful. I'm sure some of it had to do with the fact that we had become sexually involved, but this was also a part of mom's effort to date again. She and dad hadn't gone out for a date for as a long as I could remember, so I had never seen her dressed like this. Her hair was nicely done, not pulled up, but it simply looked like she had put more effort into it, styling it and giving it a softer curl. Her eyes were highlighted with gentle brown eye shadow and a dark liner, her lashes longer and thicker. Her face had a light dusting of make-up and her lips were a dark, shiny pink.
Her dress was black and sleeveless and showed her form nicely, ending just above her knees. It wasn't tight, but it tapered to her waist and accentuated her figure without being too revealing. Her legs were covered in sheer black panty hose and she was wearing black patent leather heels to lengthen her legs and to keep the muscles in her calves flexed.
She must have noticed me staring because she simply cleared her throat. I quickly returned my gaze to her face and noticed her smiling with that subtle genuine smile I loved. "I take it you like it?"
"God, mom. You look..."
I shook my head no before saying, "Sexy as hell."
She blushed a little and looked away. "You're sweet to say that to your mother."
"I'm not sweet, believe me. If you knew what was going through my head about my mother, you wouldn't call me sweet."
She laughed a little and looked back up at me with a sideways sexy glare. She had a twinkle in her eye. "Shame on you, thinking that way about your own mom."
"I promise if you go out wearing that, I won't be the only man thinking that way about you."
"Really?" she asked, walking over to me. "Well, just so you know, I'll be coming home with you tonight, no matter who else thinks dirty thoughts about me." She reached up with both hands and straightened the knot in my tie. "You never could get these things straight, you know." She smoothed my tie back down and stepped away. "There," she said with satisfaction. "Now you're as dashing as ever." She smiled up at me.
"Thanks, mom," I said.
"Oh, you're welcome, darling."
"No, not just the tie." She looked at me with a little tilt in her head and her brow furrowed. "I mean, for everything. This may sound weird, but..." I looked down trying to think of what to say. I didn't say anything for a few seconds as I tried to find the words. I had the nervous habit of holding my left hand in my right with my thumb rubbing my palm as I thought. I had been doing it for as long as I could remember and here I was doing it right now.
"It's okay, baby. Just tell me." Her voice was motherly again, soothing.
"Well...you make me feel like a man. I mean...you respect me...or at least you seem to respect me."
"Oh, baby," she sympathized. "I do respect you. I hope you know that." She touched my cheek with her palm. "You're an amazing young man and I'm so proud of you. And you look so handsome tonight. Trust me, I'm not going to be the only one causing dirty thoughts tonight." She winked at me. "I'm going to have all the young ladies jealous of me."
"Don't worry, mom. I won't even notice. I'm going to have a hard time taking my eyes off you tonight."
"I think I can handle that. It looks like we'll both have a hard time controlling ourselves, huh?"
"It looks like it," I shrugged with a smile. "Shall we?" I asked, motioning toward the door to the garage.
I opened the door for her and followed her into the garage and around to her side of the car after pressing the button to open the garage door. Opening her door, I helped her into the seat before closing the door and walking around to settle into the driver's seat of mom's car.
The ride to the restaurant was nice, but quiet. How was I supposed to talk to her? I've never been on a date with her before.
I cleared my throat. "Um, mom?"
"Yes?" She turned from looking out the side window to look at me.
"What should I call you tonight? You know, while we're out."
"Hm. I guess it may be awkward if you're flirting with me and then blurt out 'mom' somewhere in there, huh?"
"Yeah, a little," I laughed.
"Why don't you just call me by my name?"
"I don't know. I guess I could, but it just feels weird."
"Unlike drilling me on the couch?"
"Yeah, I know it sounds stupid, but..." I just shrugged.
"Tell you what. You call me whatever you want tonight and when you find something you like, you can use that whenever we go out. Kind of a fantasy name. How does that sound?"
"You mean we're going out again?"
"I can't think of any reason why not," she smiled.
"Well, until you meet someone."
"What do you mean?"
"You know," I said. "Until you meet someone and start dating again."
"Cory," she said, turning toward me in her seat a little, "What makes you think I want to start dating again?"
"I just assumed that at some point you would want a good man who will treat you the way you deserve."
"I don't have any plans to date anyone. And I think there is already a good man who will treat me right. And we're going out tonight." She was serious. I could tell by looking at her.
"Mom, I don't know that I can stop dating. I mean I want a family of my own one day, a wife and kids." I was nervous about where this was going.
"Oh, sweetie," she touched my arm. "I'm not expecting you to stop dating to be with Erin and me. I know I can't ask you to do that. I love making love to you and spending time with the two of you, but I'm much older and have already got a family. I'm not asking you to change your future for our new relationship. I want grandkids one day, too. I want you to find a nice girl to marry and start the family you want. I'm okay with that, sweetie. You're not going to hurt my feelings by falling in love with someone else."
"Really?" I was relieved and skeptical.
"Of course. Listen, Cory, neither of us can predict the future and I would never ask you to give up your dreams for me. I want you to be happy. If that includes having a family of your own, I want that for you, but I don't want you to do that for me. If you decide not to marry or not to have kids, I will love you the same. Please don't feel any pressure from me to make those kinds of decisions on my behalf. And if you ever want to stop what we have started, just let me know."
"I don't see me wanting to stop that," I said, "but I appreciate it just the same."
She smiled at me. "I'm glad you don't want to stop. That means a lot to me, but I was serious when I told you and Erin this morning that I want you to be able to talk to me about anything. I mean it, Cor. Anything."
"Wow, thanks mom," I sighed. "That's a relief to hear you say that. It just takes some pressure off me."
"Well, I never intended to pressure you at all. I'm sorry if I made you feel that way." Mom seemed a little sad.
"No, mom, don't feel that way. You didn't do anything to pressure me. I wanted it. And I still do," I smiled. "Now," I breathed with a bright smile and a squeeze on her hand, "Would you like the steak or the lobster?"
"Ooh," she giggled, returning a squeeze on my hand. "Steak or lobster? You're going to spoil me rotten!"
"I just want to treat you the way you deserve. I'm sorry I don't have more money or I would show you what you're really worth."
She dropped her head back against the head rest and smiled lightly at me. "You're sweet. Just being out on a date with the most handsome and kindest man I know is enough of a treat."
I smiled back at her lightly before turning my attention back to the road. We were just entering downtown and the sun was low enough to be blocked by the higher buildings as they passed, giving a scattered and irregular strobe effect in the corner of my left eye. I moved the visor to the side window to block it out and at the next exit I followed the ramp down and back under the overpass to our destination.
Although there was no valet parking, the recently restored neighborhood and businesses were nice enough that I didn't need to worry about mom's car getting stolen or vandalized. Parking in the private lot behind the building, in the first floor of the parking garage, I approached mom's side of the car and helped her out, again admiring her.
"You really do look amazing tonight," I said.
"Thank you," she breathed with a slight blush. I bent down to kiss her lightly on the lips as my hand touched the small of her back. When I pulled back her eyes were still closed and she sighed a little.
"Mm, that's nice."
"I had to stop myself so I wouldn't mess up your make-up."
"In time," she winked. "In the meantime, I think we should go eat."
"So have you decided?"
"Not yet." She hooked her hand in my arm as I set the alarm with the key fob and dropped it into my pocket.
We walked across the small open section of the parking lot and around to the front entrance of the locally legendary restaurant. I didn't even have to open the door. As soon as we rounded the corner, a young lady in a white shirt and black pencil skirt greeted us and held the door for us to enter. Mom entered first and I followed closely behind.
It wasn't long before we were seated and I ordered us a bottle of the house white wine. Mom didn't say a word about it, so I assumed she was all right with my choice. I didn't know much about wine, but I knew that in this kind of restaurant, anything they served would be at least decent.
Mom looked at the menu across from me and I looked at mine, containing my surprise at the cost of some of the meals. It took me a minute to determine them because they were simply an italicized whole-dollar amount near the margin for each item and they didn't have dollar signs. It was a good thing I had good credit and stayed on top of my credit card bills so I had a good balance left.
Within a few minutes the waiter returned with the bottle of wine. He opened the wine at the table and poured mom's glass first before setting it front of her and pouring mine. She picked up her glass and I did the same as soon as it landed on the table.
"To a beautiful night with a beautiful young lady," I smiled, raising my glass slightly. Mom smiled lightly in returned and raised hers for a moment before taking a sip. I followed with a sip of my own.
"Mm. This is a good choice, Cory."
"Yeah, it's not bad. But the best choice I've ever made is sitting across from me."
She blushed a little and looked down. "Thank you."
Mom and I chatted a little bit, mostly about the restaurant, looking around and pointing out some nice touches. Neither of us had ever been here and I know I had never been to one this nice before, but didn't know if mom ever had. I didn't want to ask. She really should have spent a lot more time in places like this and a lot less time getting mistreated by a fuckup.
It wasn't long before the waiter returned to our table, as I was refilling mom's glass.
"Have you decided?" he asked.
"We have," I said, looking at mom, who seemed a little surprised. "The lady will have the steak, medium rare, and lobster tail. And I'll have the same."
"Very good, sir. Will there be anything else?"
"I don't think so."
The waiter nodded and turned to leave. He was out of earshot before mom spoke.
"Cory, that's going to cost a fortune. And there's no way I'll be able to eat all that."
"I'm sure Erin won't mind a little steak and lobster, right?" I smiled at her.
She laughed a little. "No, I guess she won't."
"I don't want you to think you need to eat all that, and please don't worry about the price. I know what I'm doing and this is something I get to do for you. For the first time in my life I feel free to treat the way you have always deserved. I'm just sorry it took me so long."
Mom's eyes were tearing up. "Thank you, sweetie."
I reached across the table for her hand. She held mine with one hand while she brought the napkin from her lap to blot under her eyes to catch the tears that began to roll down her beautiful cheek.
I leaned in so I could speak more quietly. "Mom?" I whispered.
"Yes?" she leaned in.
"Do you think I'm taking advantage of you?" I was genuinely concerned.
"Oh, no, not at all. I know what I'm doing," she smiled, her eyes twinkling a little.
"Okay, I just wanted to make sure."
"I appreciate it," she said, giving my hand a squeeze and sitting back. "So, haven't thought of a name yet, huh?"
I shrugged and fiddled with the fork in front of me. "I think so, but I don't know. I mean, I think it needs to be classy and...age-appropriate." I looked at her sheepishly and she just smiled and nodded, so I continued. "I don't want it to sound made-up or like a porn star or stripper name" I whispered.
"Okay, I agree with that. So what are you thinking, then?"
"Maybe...Vanessa?" I waited for a laugh that never came.
Mom just tilted her head and looked up. "Vanessa Williams. Vanessa Redgrave. Both beautiful and classy ladies." She looked back at me. "Vanessa's good. I can live with that," she smiled.
"Good," I sighed, relieved. "Would you like a roll...Vanessa?"
Mom smiled. "Why, yes, please."
The rest of our dinner date was very nice. The steak and lobster were incredible, the credit card went through without a hitch and mom's new name began to roll off the tongue more naturally than I had imagined it would. It's still new and a little strange, but that's to be expected.
I walked mo...Vanessa back to the car, one of her hands in my arm and the other hand holding a foil swan that contained a little bit of steak and lobster. The car chirped as I unlocked it from a few feet away and then I opened her door again to help her settle into the seat. She looked at me in a way that melted me, a look somewhere between passion and adoration. I loved that look.
As I pulled out of the parking garage, Vanessa told me to turn right instead of left. I followed simply because she asked. After a few more minutes and two more turns, I found myself turning into the main entrance to the large city park. The sky was gray and there were decorative iron lights lining the sidewalk, their globes glowing white in the dark of the trees.
I saw couples and families walking down the sidewalk, arms and strollers loaded down. A man in a bright orange vest, holding flashlight cones, directed me into a parking lot. Mom never said a word. When we pulled into the parking space as directed by the second man with flashlights, I turned off the engine, giving mom a funny look.
"Come on," she chirped. "This should be fun." With that, she opened the door and practically hopped out, ignoring me.
I sighed and shook my head. As soon as I opened the door, mom's slammed shut and I heard a background of people talking and laughing and children chattering and asking questions. Closing my door, I walked around to the back of the car where mom was standing. "Vanessa, what's this about?"
"Cory," she said, bouncing a little on her toes, "Open the trunk."
I did and saw a small cooler and our camping blanket.
"You know that every summer they have movies in the park. I didn't want to say anything because I didn't know if we would get to it, but I thought it might be fun to watch one together. They're showing 'Singing in the Rain' tonight. It's one of my favorites."
My stomach sank a little. I was hoping to get home and finish out the evening with a bang, so to speak, but my fog quickly lifted when I saw her biting her lip nervously, waiting for my answer.
"I would love to watch it with you! You know, I've never seen the whole thing."
"Really?" She was almost as excited about that part as she was about watching it again, it seemed.
"Really. And I'm glad. Now my memory of this movie will always be of seeing it with you on our first date." I smiled genuinely at her and she rushed me with a hug.
"Oh, Cory, thank you so much! I can't tell you how much this means to me!" Her arms gripped tightly around my neck and shoulders and I was surprised at how much she appreciated me doing something as simple as watching a movie with her.
She let go of my neck and reached in to pick up the blanket and cooler before giving me the brightest smile I had ever seen from her. For the second time that night, my heart melted. I smiled at her and closed the trunk before setting the alarm. I took the cooler from her and she draped the folded blanket over her right forearm as she took hold of my right hand with her left. Immediately she intertwined her fingers into mine and I realized right then that we were an actual couple, if only for tonight.
We quietly made our way down the long sidewalk which curled through the trees along the perimeter of the park. As we walked we passed some people, but were more often passed by others. Our pace was slow and leisurely. The night was warm and there was a gentle warm breeze from our right. I heard music gradually getting louder as we walked along and it transitioned through a wide variety of styles and ages.
Soon enough we rounded a corner and stood on a large railed patio that was raised less than a story above a tremendous manicured lawn that held a majestic movie screen and hundreds of people scattered across the grass. There were large portable stadium lights along both edges of the grass that illuminated the crowd with bright white. Looking around the patio I saw a variety of carts from vendors selling giant pretzels, popcorn, sno-cones, and ice cream, and found the source of the music. The local station that always boasts of music from the 70s to today, had a table with some reps and their station was broadcasting from several speakers spread around the edges of the patio and even a couple of large speakers on the lawn at the foot of the stairs. From the screen along the sides were other large speakers, all wired to a large case maybe a hundred feet from the screen. I assumed this was where the projector and soundboard were.
"Wow!" mom exclaimed. I looked over and she was like a little kid. "This is so cool! I can't believe I'm here! Thank you so much, Cory! Thank you thank you!" She clapped her hands excitedly, causing the blanket to unfold a little, which didn't seem to bother her. "Let's go find a good spot!"
She pulled on my hand, leading me to the stairs and down the broad shallow steps as she scanned for a nice place to settle in. "There's one," she belted as she pulled me to the left toward a small empty patch near the tree line.
When we got to the place where she was satisfied, she let go of my hand and merrily tossed the blanket out in front of her to watch it float down mostly flat as she bent her knees and followed it. I stood beside her and watched her crawl forward to flip the corners down before dropping to her hip and looking up at me.
"Well? Are you going to join me or just stand there all night?" Her voice had a laugh to it, but her eyebrows were raised as if she was expecting an answer.
"Sure. I was just admiring the view. I can't get over how beautiful you are."
"Now stop that or you're going to make me miss the movie." She sat up and extended both hands out at me, inviting me to come sit with her.
"You're not making it any easier to want to stay, you know."
"Well, this is where I am and if you're going to be with me tonight, you're going to have to stay here, too."
"Oh, all right." I rolled my eyes and sat down on the blanket next to her as she laughed a little.
She placed her feet in my lap and said, "Would you take off my shoes so I can be more comfortable?"
"Of course." I began unbuckling her shoes and as I caressed her feet and worked her shoes off, she moaned lightly at me and kept looking me in the eye with one of her sexiest looks. Even while her shoes were toppled sideways on the blanket beside me I continued to rub her feet and calves.