Sylvia's Mother Ch. 26byD.C. Roi©
They ate lunch, cleaned up the dishes, and spent the rest of the afternoon sitting on the sofa in the living room listening to music and talking. It wasn't that they didn't want to make love. The thing was, having a chance to spend time together, just talking, was so delightful neither of them wanted to spoil the mood. Sylvia's mother asked Jason a lot of questions about his family and was surprised by how close they were and how much he obviously loved and respected his parents.
"I wish my girls felt about Milton and me the way you do about your parents," she mused.
"Brenda does, I think," Jason replied. "She really loves you a lot. And I think, maybe, Sylvia loves you, too, but she doesn't know how to show it."
"I know," Karen sighed. "I suppose the fact that their father is an alcoholic may have something to do with it, but I keep feeling as if, somehow, I've failed them. Sylvia, at least. Brenda seems to be doing pretty well, despite all her father and I have put her through." She paused and took a deep breath. "Jason, do you think Brenda might be...ah...well...um, ah, gay?" she asked.
Jason was surprised by her question. "Why do you wonder that?" he replied.
Karen shrugged. "I'm not sure, exactly," she said. "Maybe I'm wrong. I hope so. It's just that Brenda hasn't ever had a boyfriend, but she's had quite a few close girlfriends. Almost all the students at the riding academy are girls, you know?"
"I didn't know that," Jason said. "Would it bother you if she was, you know, gay?"
"I'm not sure," Karen said. "I certainly would like grandchildren someday, and I guess part of me would like to see both of my girls grow up and be happily married. On the other hand, if Brenda's happy, that's all I care about."
"My Uncle Rich is gay," Jason said. "He's my father's younger brother."
"How does your family handle it?" Karen asked.
Jason shrugged. "I'm not sure we 'handle it' at all," he said. "The fact that he's gay doesn't usually come up, at least not around our house. He's Uncle Rich and his partner is Mike. They've been together as long as I can remember. They live out on Fire Island. Uncle Rich is a stockbroker and Mike works in New York in the theater."
"And your father isn't upset by the fact that his brother is gay?" Karen asked, sounding a little surprised.
"Heck, no," Jason said. "Dad and Uncle Rich are real close. Mike, too. They came and stayed with us for a while and Mike and Uncle Rich helped Dad build a deck on our trai...mobile home. You should see it, it's really nice. Mike works building sets for Broadway plays, and he's a really good carpenter." He paused. "How do you think your...your husband will act if it turns out Brenda is a lesbian?"
"I'm not sure," Karen said. "He sometimes rants and raves about gays...when he isn't ranting and raving about lawyers. And he and Brenda have never been close. I don't think he'd be too happy."
"So what are you going to do about this?" Jason asked.
"What can I do?" Karen replied. "I'm not sure I can ask Brenda. If I'm wrong, she'd be horribly embarrassed, wouldn't she?"
"Yeah, probably," Jason said. "I guess I'd be if somebody asked me if I was gay."
Karen smiled at him. "We certainly know that's not the case, don't we, my darling?" she said, and gently stroked his face with her fingers.
Jason felt himself blushing. "Ah...yeah...I...I guess we do," he stammered.
"That music sounds so nice," Karen said. "Would you like to dance with me again, Jason?"
"Ah...sure," Jason replied.
They got up and, while the sounds of big band music filled the room, they moved slowly around the living room nestled in each other's arms.
They were still dancing when Brenda arrived home. Grinning at them, she chuckled, "It's a beautiful day and all you guys can do is stay indoors and dance to that old time music?"
"It's classic music," Jason retorted. "The kind that will be around years from now. And besides, slow dancing is fun."
"Yeah, sure," Brenda said. "Elevator music. I suppose you guys figured I was going to make dinner again?"
"Of course we don't expect you to cook for us again, honey," Karen said. "I thought that since it was just the three of us tonight, we'd go out and get some burgers, or pizza or something. I don't feel like cooking, and I don't think Jason does, either. Do you, Jason?"
"Going out and getting something sounds good to me," Jason said. "But let's do something other than burgers. I get enough of them at work."
They decided on a fast food restaurant that featured Mexican-style cooking and, when they got there and were seated, they chatted amiably while they waited for their food. Jason found it amazing how deftly Brenda handled being with them, given the fact that she knew what was going on. The topic of their activities never came up, even though there was a twinkle in Brenda's eyes as she watched them. She made sure he and her mother sat together on the same side of the booth, and sat in the back seat of the car so he could sit in front.
After the meal, they returned to the cabin and, as had become their habit, they played a few games of "Trivial Pursuit." This time Jason, who wasn't distracted, won all the games handily, a fact that seemed to bug Brenda.
"How do you know all that stuff?" she asked after he'd won his fourth game easily. "Darn, Jason, you know all about TV shows, even those that were on before you were born."
"I watch a lot of TV, and I read a lot," Jason replied. "Stuff just seems to stick in my mind, I guess. My dad always says I'm better at remembering stuff that doesn't really matter than anybody he knows."
"You ought to get on 'Jeopardy'," Brenda said. "You could be teen champion and make lots of money."
"Yes, Jason, you should try that," Karen said. "I think Brenda's right."
"I'm not so sure," Jason said. "The first time I was involved in a debate, I got stage fright so bad I could barely talk."
"I saw you debate once, though," Brenda said, "at that assembly the debate club put on. It sure didn't look as if you had stage fright to me."
"I guess I managed to get over it," Jason said, blushing.
Brenda stood up and stretched. "Well," she said, yawning. "I'm going to bed. I've lost about all the games of 'Trivial Pursuit' I want to lose for one night." She chuckled. "I like playing you better when you're upset, Jason. At least I have half a chance of winning then." Giggling, she turned and started upstairs.
Karen smiled across the table at Jason. "Why don't we put the game away and go to bed, too?" she asked.
Jason grinned back at her and said, "Sounds good to me."
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