Melissa jumped, startled, before giggling.
“Whoa!” she said smiling as she picked up the chiming tablet on the couch next to her, trying to hand it to me.
“Who is it?”
“Your son.” she said.
“Blaine get that please, I have my hands full.” I said as I was arranging the coffee and adult beverages I carried in, and pouring everybody their orders.
“I am busy too, playing the new song everybody is ignoring. Have him answer!” Blaine pointed at Ezio with his chin, while continuing playing a riff on the bass guitar.
“Why me? Not even my kid!” Ezio protested immediately.
“Oh, for heaven’s sake!” Melissa had enough and tapped on the answer button, when after the acknowledging sound Liam and Leonie’s faces appeared.
“Oh, hey Melissa! Where are my parents?” Liam looked surprised.
“Hey kiddos! I decided I needed a design studio location closer to home, so I took over their house and locked them in the basement.” she joked.
“Understandable. Can you run the tablet down to them though real quick, we have something to show them.” he joked back, as I now took the tablet from Mel.
“Nice, kids! Whatcha got?” I asked while Blaine called from the background
“You are disowned son!”
“Copy that, dad. Leo, show them.” he said now turned to Leonie, who fondled around somewhere out of view, then a picture was held up into the camera. I froze, mouth open, Mel pulled the tablet over to her, then took it from me, her mouth open now too, before she turned it around and held it up for the men to see.
“Hey kid, we can’t see anything. It is just black and white and squiggly lines and shit!” Blaine yelled at the tablet after squinting at the picture. At least he stopped strumming now.
“It’s an ultrasound, you idiot!” Ezio informed him, shaking his head.
“Ultrasound of what?” Blaine asked.
“What do you think, punk? Their lunch?” Ezio face palmed himself, as Blaine walked over and took the tablet from Melissa, on the screen now Liam and Leonie’s smiling faces.
“Another oopsie?!” he asked surprised.
“No, dad, not this time. This one was intentional.” Liam smiled patiently.
“BLAINE!” I reprimanded.
“Classy!” Ezio shook his head again, as I grabbed the tablet from Blaine.
“Congratulations! From all of us. You just really surprised us, we didn’t realize you were trying …” I explained, trying to make up for Blaine’s crudeness.
“Thanks mom – and everybody.” Leonie said, beaming.
We made some more smalltalk before the Skype video chat was ended.
“Wow.” I said.
“I second that. And on purpose. Did you know they wanted another one?” Blaine was still shocked, as he got up and put the tablet on a shelf, then poured himself another drink.
“I don’t blame them. They have the financial stability and ..”
“Oh, knock it off, Mafioso!” Blaine barked at Ezio.
“Why would I? Seems like I am happier about the fact than his own father, you stronzo!”
“Of course you are, since you must be a direct descendent from Roger Rabbit, judging by your breeding habits!”
“Hey!” Melissa had enough and slapped Blaine’s leg.
“Sorry, but he got started way before you!”
This time it was me slapping his butt, hard, he complained.
“Sit down on it or you’ll get more!”
“He best sit on his face, that’s where most of the waste comes out of!” Ezio instigated, ruffling Blaine’s feathers as intended.
“Ugh!” Melissa moaned, got up and pulled me up off the couch with her and behind her into the kitchen, giving me a quick hug on the way.
“Congrats, grandma!” she grinned, then pulled me along.
“Thanks!” I said, stumbling after her into my kitchen where she closed the door behind us.
“Please tell me you have some Moscato hidden in here somewhere!” she moaned annoyed. Guess we both were not in the mood for the usual Blaine vs. Ezio rumble.
“Do husbands annoy their wives? Of course I do! Get the glasses, I have two whole bottles.”
“Screw glasses, I say we each get a bottle and save the dishes.”
We were still giggling as we popped open bottle number one, pouring into glasses like civilized people when the doorbell rang right as we cheered to each other for the first sip.
I rolled my eyes. Finally I had some bestie time with my girl Mel and someone had to bother us.
“You need to get that?” she asked after the sip.
“Nope. Hubby can. I don’t keep him to just sit on his butt and look cute.” I grinned.
“He does though – with that haircut! Nice job, Vik!” Mel clapped her hands and wiggled her eyebrows approvingly, winking at me.
“As much as I’d love to take credit for it, that was all his idea. He didn’t even tell me he was doing it. Just left shaggy as usual one day, and came back a total hunk. But I swear, I thought he was eye candy before, but now… Had I suspected THAT kinda potential, he’d have gotten a cut YEARS ago! I swear I still can barely stop looking at him, among other things…” I giggled, blushing.
“Hey, no details, please! I am BEGGING you, girl! By the way, our bathroom at home sends its regards and misses the two of you dearly – not Ezio and I as we prefer the two of you where we can see you – likewise our maid – but it does. Feels unloved now, pun intended. Plus we are still trying to use up all that Lysol we stocked up on in you guys’ honor.” Melissa laughed, making me blush. There had been times where passion had gotten the best of Blaine and me, mostly Blaine though, and we may or may not have defiled their personal space a few times. With everything going on over the past years, such instances of naughty conduct in unusual locations had become the exception now
Except, there were the occasional heat of the moment transgressions … I blushed when my mind wandered, but was shaken from my memories when the door opened and Vivian entered, followed by Blaine and Ezio, who all now crowded the kitchen.
Why? I whined to myself secretly.
Vivian looked terrible and came straight to me, hugging me off the chair I had been sitting on. Now standing, I hugged her back.
Lacking a better idea, I asked the really idiotic question
“Are you okay?” No, I could see she wasn’t. She was shaking her head against my shoulder.
“Let me guess? You and Silas are having another fight again. So, what did I win, huh?” Blaine asked, slightly annoyed.
He had never been a fan of Vivian’s and Silas’ rollercoaster relationship and truly abhorred the repercussions usually involving our daughter ending up crying at our doorstep again and again over the past almost two decades now.
Wow, that long already?
Time really was of no consequence when you are a vampire, as Caleb liked to say.
Vivian and Silas had children, twins, now 16 years old and he felt that as parents they should keep it together more.
Vivian pulled away from me now, looking at him, realizing our neighbors were also still here and staring at her. She shrugged before she said
“Oh what the hell, you two would hear about it anyway, so here goes: Silas and I are separating. I think this time it’s final, you guys.” Vivian did her best to fight back tears.
“Again?” Blaine rolled his eyes.
Vivian looked straight at him, shaking her head.
“No daddy, this time for real. And for good. At least as far a I can see. I do not think this can be fixed.” she swallowed hard.
Then she preceded to tell us the story. Evidently their daughter Zoey was to blame, Vivian seemed to have a tough time with her, while Silas was wrapped tightly around her finger. I got it, I had noticed that there was something off about that girl and hence kept my distance. The boy, Leon, was a sweetheart, but overly attached to his sister. Oddly, even Blaine agreed. Guess she did not have EVERY man fooled. (Read more about Zoey’s character here)
Ezio and Mel soon left to give us privacy for our family affairs. Vivian asked to stay with us until she found a new place. Tomorrow she had an appointment with a lawyer.
Blaine and I were certain that same night Silas would show up, but he didn’t. Not then, and not any of the following days.
About two weeks in, Vivian came into the living room, where Blaine and I sat watching TV. She shrugged apologetically. We both knew what that meant. She had been to view another apartment. Evidently another no-go.
“I am so sorry guys, I am really trying to find a place, but they are all so … not it.”
“No rush kid, stay as long as you need to. You are our daughter and I can see that you are hurting. We both are here for you and this will always be your home too. Even though your mother and I were actually going to get a new dog, but you’ll do in a pinch.” Blaine winked trying to make light of a sad situation.
Another painful occurrence worth mentioning. Several weeks ago both dogs, Vader and Coco suddenly acted strange and then laid down and died minutes apart. Those two had been the last descendants of our very first dog together, Spunky, whom we got as a puppy back when we first moved into this house when Blaine and I were still newlyweds and I was pregnant with Vivian. It was painful. But we both were dog people and knew we would have another eventually.
But even more painful was seeing our little girl hurting. Technically, of course she was a grown woman and not a girl at all, with a grown son, Finn, from a relationship before Silas, who was already married and then the two teens she and Silas had together.
But she was still our child and as tough as Vivian may always seem, Blaine and I knew that it was all just an act. She was very vulnerable and despite her putting up a good show, she was not fooling us. And still no sign, no word, no nothing from Silas. Nor either of her children with Silas. Finn had come by as soon as he found out about it and offered Vivian to move in with him and Alexa and their two kids, but Vivian naturally declined.
Would this really be the end?
Would they really end up divorced?
As positive as I tried to stay, it sure did not look good anymore …