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The Good Doctor
--- Chapter 33 ---
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The Good Doctor 33

“Rose, where do you buy your clothes?” The woman must be going through old trunks and pulling out her stuff from the 1930’s. She slid into the other side of the booth while giving me a dirty look.

She glared at me. “Saks! Why, what’s wrong with this?” She started to fumble in her purse for a cigarette.

“You can’t smoke in here.”

“I thought that this was the smoking section.”

“No they don’t have one anymore. They got tired of hauling out the bodies. You really oughta quit ya know.”

“You can’t fucking smoke anywhere anymore! Jesus, Eric, you used to be able to relax in a restaurant with a cigarette before eating. You used to be able to smoke everywhere!”

“Adolphe Menjou’s dead, Rose! The whole silver cigarette case and dry Martini group has gone on to their reward.” I raised my eyebrows. “I think those folks at that table have Nicorette gum, maybe I could get you a piece.”

“I’d rather die! Why did you invite me to lunch? You are paying aren’t you? I mean it’d be just like you to invite me to lunch and expect me to pay. And how the hell do you know about Adolphe Menjou?” God what an irritating woman!

“Yes, yes, I’m paying. Besides, when did I ever stick you with a check?

She had whipped out a compact and was checking her makeup. “I don’t remember but it just seems like it’d be a very Eric thing to do.”

“Never, Rose, besides you’re a good customer and a good friend and I became painfully aware of Adolphe during Janet’s old movie phase. It was the longest year of my life.”

“Oh my god, Eric, good customer, good friend! How unctuous! True but unctuous. You must be in deep shit. What’d you do? It can’t be too bad you’re still free and you don’t look damaged………at least not more than usual. You can’t be in trouble with Pete, that luscious stud is oddly blind to your faults and if it were your mother you wouldn’t be walking around. Your father? Jase?”

“Jase.”

Rose’s face froze. “Not possible! He adores you! What’d you do?”

“It’s not just me, Rose. It’s Pete and me, us together, two dads. Kathy Ryan told Jase that it wasn’t right that he has two dads. That you’re supposed to have a mom and a dad.”

Rose looked at me blankly. “So?”

“So? Whadya mean so?”

“I mean, who gives a fuck what Kathy Ryan thinks?”

“Well, Rose, I’m sure that Jase does. Those are the kids that he goes to school with. They’re important to him. Pete thinks we should talk to the parents.”

“Did Jase say that the other kids were saying the same thing?”

“No but you can assume that they are.”

Rose crooked a finger at a waitress who was smart enough to come right over. She said, “Hi, Hon, we’ll both have a burger and fries and a couple of cups of hot black coffee.”

“Rose, I don’t want……”

“Shut up, Eric! Thanks Hon, rush it will ya?”

“Rose! I wanted a ham sandwich with chips.” She waved it away with her red lacquered nails.

“Just eat the burger and shut up. Okay so you don’t really know what the other kids think? Well, of course you don’t.” Rose snapped her purse shut and settle back against the booth. “Unfortunately, Eric, little girls start learning at a very early age what it takes to get the attention that they feel they’re entitled to. It may just be that Kathy’s got the prepubescent hots for Jase and that one way to get him to notice her is to make his life hell.

I was dubious. “She coulda just said hello.”

She smiled. “Oh if only it were that simple. Anyway kids today aren’t as nutty about the whole gay thing as they used to be and besides both you and Pete are well known and he’s certainly admired.” The bitch! “And once you had that commitment ceremony there can’t be anyone in this town that doesn’t know and no one seems to care. At least no one has ever said anything to me.”

“Well do you think that Pete and I should talk to the parents? Would it do any good?”

“Let Pete do the talking.”

“Thanks, Rose!”

She sighed. “I think that that particular type of confrontation could be a mistake. For one thing I don’t believe, except perhaps in a trivial irritation of the moment type of way, that the parents of these kids believe that this matters. I simply don’t believe that they’re out there poisoning their kids minds and you run the risk of making too big a deal out of this. I would let Jase handle it. If he can’t, then act. Besides, didn’t you go to school with Brad Ryan?”

“I went to school with em both. Brad was your typical jock, playing football and screwing. He went to work selling Chevy’s when he graduated from high school.”

“Has he ever said anything?”

“No. We always got along fine.”

Rose smiled. “Gee……..why doesn’t that surprise me?”

“What’s that suppose to mean, Rose?”

She looked past me. “Thank god, our burgers are coming.”

-----------------------------

Pete walked in through the garage door and slid his briefcase into the closet. I was sitting at the kitchen table sipping a beer and Jase was in the family room watching the tube. My mother was on him in an instant.

“Ohhhhh, Pete! You’re finally home!” She turned her head to me. “He works! He’s been saving lives all day.” Needless to say, the implication was that I had been fucking off all day and probably, in some way, making the world worse. It didn’t matter; at least the microscope was turned on someone else.

Pete’s beautiful blue eyes got that “I’m trapped” look but she hustled him over to the table and got him to sit down before he had a chance to make the “I gotta take a shower” excuse. It’s amazing that a big strong handsome talented respected guy like Pete becomes a six year old in the right hands.

“Eric, get Pete a beer.” He tried to say that he’d get his own beer but she had already slid a plate in front of him. “Just a little something. Eric! The beer!”

Geez ma I can’t fly! No, I didn’t say that I just got the beer.

“Pete, this is Bruschetta. You’ll love it. It’s got anchovies.” She raised her eyebrows to indicate he was in for a treat.

Pete’s beautiful blue eyes looked up with something akin to panic. “Anchovies?”

She patted his shoulder. “Sweetheart, you’ll love them.”

He glanced at me his mouth opened slightly and then he shut it. I figured this was time for encouragement. I called for Jase.

“Jase! Comere, Son. Mom you got one of those for Jase?

Pete started to offer us his but I held up my hand and smiled. “She’s got lots.”

Jase came barreling into the kitchen and I pulled him up onto my lap. “Grandma’s got Bruschetta for ya but this time she put anchovies on em.”

Jase threw his arms into the air and yelled, “Yeah, anchovies!”

I smiled at Pete and said, “He loves em.” Actually it was toasted Italian bread that had been rubbed with garlic and doused with olive oil and then chopped olives and tomato’s put on top along with anchovies. The anchovies were and adlib on the part of mom. Everyone in our family loves em except for Pete. Pete ate them once ten years ago and didn’t like em and hasn’t tried them since.

While Jase was scarffing down his, Pete was holding his and looking at it like it was plutonium.

While mom had her head buried in the refrigerator I said to him, “Take a bite. If you hate it I’ll eat it but I don’t think that you’re gonna hate it. You like sardines.”

He looked at me with a furrowed brow and whispered. “Eric they’re furry.”

“Not these, Pete, these are imported from Italy. They’ve been packed in salt and then she de-bones em.” I lifted my bare foot under the table and lightly touched his packed crotch. The Bruschetta almost flew out of his hands. I smiled. “Come on big guy, sometimes you gotta try new things.”

Jase twisted in my lap so that he could look up at me. “Doesn’t Pete like anchovies?” He turned to his other dad. “They’re good, Pete.” Crunch crunch crunch.

I raised an eyebrow at him. “You’ll help someone give birth but you won’t try an anchovy?”

I glanced up and whispered, “Quick, here she comes!” He quickly took a huge bite of the Bruschetta. I smiled. “Oh……..no I guess she’s not.”

Pete made a face at me with his mouth full and swallowed hard but then smiled. “That is good!” He twisted around and called to my mom. “Helen, the bruschetta’s great!”

Which brought her usual response, “What, you think that I’d give you something bad?” And he always falls for it.

“Oh…….no, Helen, it’s………I just didn’t expect the anchovies………..that I’d like em.”

I looked down at my little cruncher, Jase and smoothed his hair back away from his forehead. A futile effort but it’s one more reason to touch him. I bend my head down and kiss him on the cheek and speak softly in his ear. “How’s my little boy?”

“I’m good, Dad!”

I whisper a question to him. “When is grandma going home?”

He gives a little boy shrug and shakes his head. “I dunno.”

I look at Pete crunching away happily and return my foot to his crotch but this time he just smiles and pushes against my foot and I feel something tubular and firm.
I smile at him. “Good day, Hon?”

He smiled through a mouthful. “Nobody died, that’s a good day………….usually.”

Mom walked over to the table and said, “Okay………..all you gotta do is make the pasta.” She shifted her weight. “Eric, are you listening?”

I bend my head and inhale the smell of Jase’s hair. He smells so good! “I got it, Ma! What? You think lasagna type pasta?” I’m pulling her chain but she never sees it that way.

“Eric, are you insane? Angel hair pasta!” She shakes her head. I’m definitely a hopeless case. She calls for help.

“Pete,” she’s pleading, “don’t let him put my sauce on lasagna!” Don’t worry ma he already knows that he’s gotta watch me.

Jase has finished his snack and twists in my arms. “Dad, is there time for me to watch television before dinner.”

“You betcha, Kiddo.” I let him slip from my lap and he tools off into the family room. At the same time Pete has finessed Mom all the way to the garage door. She pulls his head down and kisses him goodbye.

As he closes the door on my mother I walk into his arms and bury my face in his chest. He tilts my head up and kisses me, lightly at first and then big time super passionate tongue on tongue crotches grinding into crotches.

When we break the kiss I say. “I invited Karen and Brad Ryan to come over for dinner tomorrow night.”

I had asked my mom to whip a little something up for us cause we were gonna have some people over and she really threw herself into it. The kitchen table was pretty much covered with food, some Italian, some normal everyday stuff. She fussed with it forever and then grabbed Jase and took him home with her so that we could have an adult evening.

Pete pretty much latched on the Karen Ryan and was schmoozing her and pouring wine into her. I reached into the fridge and grabbed four beers and a large bowl of jumbo shrimp a handful of napkins and hauled Brad into the family room.

“There’s a ball game on, Brad.” I flopped down on the sofa kicked off my shoes and put my feet up on the coffee table. “Make yourself comfortable.”

Brad toed off his loafers and said, “Cool TV!”

“Yeah, it used to be Pete’s. When we got together we moved it over. Have some shrimp my mother made em.”

Brad took a huge bite of shrimp. “Holy fuck these are good!”

In the kitchen Karen’s head swiveled around and she yelled, “Brad would you watch your language?” She turned back to Pete and we could just hear her say, “He’s like some kinda animal.”

Brad smiled at me through a mouthful of shrimp and half whispered, “The woman can hear me say fuck from two blocks away unless I ask her for it in bed at night and then she’s deaf.” He took another bite of shrimp. “What’d your mom do to these?”

I chugged some beer and shrugged. “I dunno, tastes like garlic, maybe some oregano. It’s an Italian thing she does it all the time.”

“You get these all the time?”

“Yeah……..she cooks for us a lot. It’s kinda what she likes to do. Ahhh, so how are the kids?”

Neither one of us stopped watching the television. Brad rolled the cold can of beer over his forehead. “Like an invading army! Five girls! What the fuck were we thinking?” Brad suddenly looked around the room. “Hey, I been here before. That’s right you guys had that wedding thing ceremony like.”

“Yeah,” I slid a little further down on the sofa, “I passed out.”

Brad laughed. “That’s right! I remember! I figured you were wasted. I woulda been.”

I sat up and turned towards Brad on the sofa. “So you don’t have any problem with Pete and me being gay and being Jase’s dads and all that shit?”

Brad looked at me with a sincere look on his face and then glanced quickly into the kitchen at his wife. “Fuck no man!” He lowered his voice and took a bite of shrimp. “If I could take a fuckin pill and be gay I’d do it right now. Man you got no idea what my life is like!”

“Well, why would little Kathy have told Jase that he shouldn’t have two dads, that he should have a mom and dad?”

Brad sucked on his beer, belched quietly and said. “Who fucking knows? You oughta hear the shit they say to me.” He shook his head slowly and looked at me. “I’m tellin ya buddy…..they had a fuckin pill I’d be out lookin for a boyfriend tomorrow.”

----------------------

I took my shower and then toweled myself off as I walked into our bedroom. Pete was lying naked on the bed watching me.

I knee walked across the bed and he held out his arms and held my waist as I bent to kiss him. When I broke the kiss I stared into his clear blue eyes. “So I don’t think that we have to worry about Kathy Ryan any more.”

He smiled at me. “You’re a regular Miss Marple.”

I bend over and nibble on his nipple. “I think I’ve got a better butt and I know that I’m hung better.” I settle into his arms and bury my face in his neck. I lay my face on his shoulder and whisper, “I’m so lucky to have you.”

He turns his head and says, “Lucky?”

“Yeah. After talking to Brad it made me think. Sometimes you can think things are going the way you want and then at some point you realize that maybe it’s more than you can handle.” I touched his face with my fingers and traced the line of his lips. “But…………every day that we’re together I just love you more.”

He started to speak but I gently put my fingers on his lips to stop him. “You surprise me every day with how smart you are and kind and loving.”

His eyes began to tear up and he started to speak. “Eric………..”

I stopped him again and then slid my hand between his legs and started to play with his butt. Finally I said, “Remember the lesson of the anchovies. Ya gotta be ready to try new things.”

He started to laugh and then suddenly rolled me over on my back and slid between my legs. He held my head in his hands while he kissed me. His knees were spreading my legs and he whispered, “I got something right here that I want ya to try.”

 

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