The Good Doctor, Part II, Chapter 7
My mother was making stuffed calamari - she was pulling their heads, tentacles, and guts away from their bodies; and it made this disgusting little sound when she did. It gave me the creeps, and I sighed.
The sigh drew her attention like the fluttering of an injured seal in the ocean does with sharks. She looked up at me, inhaled deeply and said, “You could have been a little friendlier to Morrie. I’ll never understand why you get like that around him. He only wants what’s best for you. He’s on your side, Eric!” Morrie is my mom’s lawyer, and I have no logical reason for clamming up when I’m around him, except that somehow, he makes me feel guilty - of something. He came out and got all the information about the accident … and to probably collude with my mother about … well, something. God only knows what they’re planning.
We were sitting at the kitchen table and, next to me, Jase swallowed the huge bite of Ciabatta bread dipped in balsamic vinegar that he’d been working on and said, “When are you gonna get a new car, Dad?” Since the accident, I was driving a rental that even I wasn’t too thrilled about.
I sat down, stole a piece of his bread and dipped it into the balsamic vinegar. “I dunno, Jase, maybe tonight. I gotta see how Pete feels about going shopping.”
“I’m goin with you, right?”
“Yep. I’m thinking we can trade you for leather upholstery.”
My mother said, “Eric!” Jase totally ignored it, tore off another piece of the Ciabatta and dipped it into the sweet vinegar.
“Dad, can we get a red car?” Jase loves red, which you can tell by the color of pretty much half of his briefs.
I said, "What, you didn't like the gray?"
"Mary Elizabeth says that red cars are the nicest." Oh, God!
Even without looking up, I knew my mother was staring at Jase. This whole business of Jase interacting with the rest of the female population is going to be a trial - just like it was when I did it.
She walked over to the table, put her hands on her hips, and said to me, "Don't get too fancy with a car! People resent it if you're driving something too nice - something they can't afford. The thing is you'll never know, cause people don't say, but suddenly somebody calls in an anonymous complaint to the zoning board, then you got real problems." That seemed like an awfully ‘specific’ for instance.
I looked up at her, smiled, and lifted a questioning eyebrow.
She scowled at me and waved her dishrag in my face. "It happens, Eric - believe me!"
I looked at Jase and said, "Is Mary Elizabeth Italian?" Like there's any chance of that! Actually, I was just asking that to irritate my mother; and believe me, it does.
"I don't think so, Dad.”
My mother made a little sound in her throat, came back and put another piece of bread on Jase's plate. This was totally unnecessary, because he was nowhere near done with what he already had, but I knew it was just an excuse for her to make a comment.
"Her family is Irish. There's nothing wrong with that, Eric." Like I had actually said there was.
She brushed Jase's hair out of his eyes and said, "Not everyone can be Italian, Jason. I'm sure they're wonderful people. Is their house nice and clean?"
A shadow of ‘How did I get into this?’ crossed over Jase's face before he swallowed another bite of bread, and said softly, "I dunno, Grandma, I guess so."
"Does her mother give you soft drinks?" Sure, Mom, you know, the poison ones.
Jase said cautiously, "She gave me a glass of Seven Up ... it was okay."
"Was the glass nice and clean or not?"
Jase said, "It was in a plastic cup. A red one."
My mother glanced at me quickly with an ‘I thought as much’ look and said, "Oh well ... it was probably clean. Did she rinse it out before she poured the soda into it? You know, sometime little bits of plastic get caught in those things when they’re manufactured, then they can get caught in your throat."
She looked at me. "I never used those unless it was a picnic; and I always rinsed them out first."
I shook my head at her and grinned. "Ma, give him a break, he lived through it."
"Eric, I'm just looking out for him. You never know what's going on out there."
I reached over, grabbed Jase's arm, and pulled him up onto my lap. He was licking balsamic vinegar off of his fingers, and I’m pretty sure he unconscientiously wiped his wet fingers on my pants. I kissed the top of his head and said, "Why don't you pick out some car buying clothes for me while I get a shower?" He nodded quickly, slipped off my lap, and took off for my bedroom. This solved several problems - but the main one was still staring at me.
My mother’s attention turned back to the stuffing for the squid she was working on. Her big chef’s knife was going over the tentacles of the squid chopping them into small pieces. She said without looking up, “Did your cousin Vinny talk to you?”
“Which one?” I got like ten cousin Vinnys.
“Fat Vinny.” That really only helped a little; but it didn’t much matter, because I hadn’t talked to any of them recently, and I was pretty sure who she meant, anyway.
I popped a piece of Jase’s bread into my mouth and talked around it. “He get arrested again?”
“They didn’t actually charge him, Eric! It was all a mistake.” Yeah, right. Vinny owned a scrap metal company, which probably makes it sound like way more than it is, because basically, it’s just him and his beat-up old truck roaming around picking up aluminum cans and anything else he can lay his hands on. And it isn’t as if Vinny is particular about who actually owns what he’s trying to pick up either. A couple of months ago, the Sheriff had a feeling that Vinny was trying to pull the copper wire out of a guy’s house who was out of town. Mainly, he got that feeling because the guy’s neighbor reported him, after snapping a few pictures of Vinny - butt crack and all - doing it. Honestly, with relatives like Vinny, it’s a wonder I’ve got any functioning DNA at all. But somehow, and to the whole family’s amazement, Vinny managed to wiggle out of it.
“Anyway, Eric, Vinny’s mother-in-law has been bugging him to ask you if you got a job that maybe her friend Maria Tenuta could do.”
She looked over at me. “You remember her? She was here when you and Pete had your commitment ceremony.”
I must have given her a blank look, because she added. “Really tall, pear shaped … the woman with the little head. You remember her!”
I was searching my memory, then finally … “With the weird hair and the big lips?” Honestly, the woman looks like she just stepped off the screen of a Disney animation; but she’s very nice, and she has a great sense of humor.
“Yeah, that one. Well apparently, she’s a wiz at bookkeeping and computers, and I figured that since you had that problem with Mr. Stenori, that maybe you could use one.” Although we are computerized, it is as they say - crap in … crap out - and somehow, Mr. Stenori had actually gone six months without ever bothering to pay his bill.
“Ma, the problem with that is I don’t want Vinny thinking that somehow he’s got a backdoor into my business. Cousin or not, he’d loot the place.”
She sighed, tossed a handful of parsley into her chopping mix and said, “No … no, I know. Don’t worry; his mother-in-law hates his guts, and so does Maria.” She shook her head slowly. “I dunno what it is with some of our relatives. I think it all started with your great uncle Milo, your grandmother always said he was never right - then he married that woman from the carnival…” She shuttered. “That whole branch of the family is pazzo.” Crazy.
I said, “Well, I always liked Maria … you really think she can do it?”
She nodded. “She’s smart. When you look like that and survive, you gotta be smart. And her husband left her pretty well off, so she’s not doing it for the money. At her age, she just wants to be around people again, you know, and work. When you get older, that’s important. And she’s a lovely person.” I really couldn’t imagine it … why would someone want to work, if they didn’t have to? If I had my way, I’d spend the whole day at home watching TV.
When I walked back to my bedroom, Jase had my clothes laid out on the bed. I looked at the bed, then at him and said, “Khaki?” Basically, in my head, there are only two types of clothes - the clothes I wear to work, which are basically gym clothes, and jeans. I guess I knew I had a pair of chinos, but I couldn’t have put my hands on them without actually thinking about it.
“I do like the v-neck.” Jase had also put out a black v-neck sweater to go with the pale tan chinos along with underwear, which I considered optional.
He nodded. “It’ll make you look serious. Maybe you’ll get a better deal on the car.” That’s my kid … always thinking.
“Let’s forget the underwear.” If I get the right salesman, that’ll help, too.
I had just gotten out of the shower, dried off, slipped on the chinos, sans underwear, and pulled the black sweater over my head. Looking in the bathroom mirror, I ran my fingers thru my hair, and thought about how different it felt to be going commando in chinos as opposed to jeans … softer, sexier. I looked down at my crotch, where things were showing a bit, and brushed my cock thru my pants lightly with the back of my thumb.
I heard a strange little strangled sound behind me, and when I looked up in the mirror again, Pete was standing in the doorway still wearing his suit coat, but with his shirt open and his tie loose. He was staring at my khaki covered ass.
He hoarsely whispered, “Chinos?”
I nodded at him in the mirror. “Yeah. I don’t think I even knew I had em. It was Jase’s idea. I think they’re from J. Crew. He says I’ll get a better deal with these on. They look okay?”
He slid in behind me and ran his hot hands up under the front of the sweater while he pushed his crotch against my ass. He kissed the side of my neck, bit me a little, and murmured, “I don’t think I’ve ever seen you in khakis.” His hands dropped down to the front of my pants, and I felt the front button popping open.
I pushed his hands away and said, “What are you doing? My mother is still here. And the second I start having fun - it’s like she can sense it - she’d be in here in a flash. Besides, we gotta buy me a car tonight.” I can’t believe I’m actually in the position of having to talk Pete out of sex!
Pete moved a bit to the side and kissed the back of my neck while he ran his left hand down my back, until his fingers were pushing down into my butt crack.
Normally, this is one of my favorite moves; but this time, instead of reaching for the lube, I jerked away from him and hissed, “You’re giving me a fucking hardon, and we gotta go out there and eat!”
I looked down at my crotch. Without underwear, my hard dick was pretty obvious. “Oh shit. I can’t go out there like this. Go grab my underwear off the bed, will ya?”
A few minutes later, and with my dick still firmish - but now encased in my Calvin Klein’s - I slid into my chair in the kitchen. Jase was already sitting there shoveling salad into his mouth. He glanced at the khaki pants, looked up at me and smiled.
My mother put out big serving bowls of food and said, “You’re finally wearing those? I bought those for you two years ago.” So that’s where they came from. “So what kind of car are you gonna get?”
Jase made a little throat clearing sound, so I sighed and said, “A red one, I guess.”
Pete’s head kinda snapped up. “A red one?”
I said, “Yeah. I been thinking maybe it should be something brighter.” I could have just said that Jase wanted a red one, but didn’t. I’m pretty sure that’s an Italian thing - never ratting anyone out - even on little things.
Pete leaned forward intently. “How about a Volvo?” He had this weirdly intense look in his eyes.
My mother and I both said at the same time, “A Volvo?”
“Eric, I’ve always wanted a Volvo! This last time I was gonna get one, but my dad talked me into the BMW. The thing is, Doctor Fenimar, you know from the clinic, has got one for sale. It’s like brand new, maybe ten thousand miles on it, but he’s gotta sell it - it’s going cheap, and it’s red.” He sighed. “My grandfather always drove Volvos. To tell you the truth, I think he only trusted people who drove Volvos.”
I was about to say okay, because … well, I don’t really care all that much about cars as long as they work, when my mother jumped in.
“How cheap, and how come he needs to sell it?”
Pete said, “I thought he said twenty grand. That’s really cheap for that car with those miles. I’d buy it myself, except my BMW doesn’t have many miles on it either.” He looked at me. “They’re very safe, Eric, very reliable.” He sighed. “His wife is making him sell it, cause she wants a Mercedes.” He shook his head in what seemed like disgust.
I looked at my mother, who shrugged and said, “That is a good price.” I can’t imagine how she would know that.
I glanced at Pete and there was something burning in his eyes; and it looked confusingly like sex. He was staring into my eyes and almost looked like he wanted to growl. Then suddenly, I felt his stocking clad toes rub against mine under the table, and it sent an electric shock thru me. I found myself blurting out, “Okay. Can we look at it after dinner?”
After dinner, Pete called his doctor friend, who told us we could see it at the clinic, if we got there before seven o’clock. So, just at six o’clock, the three of us were in Pete’s car headed to the clinic.
“So, how is it your grandfather got so hung up on Volvos? I mean, why not Cadillacs or Chevys?”
Pete sighed. “Well, the thing is my grandfather was a really good cardiologist, and he made a lot of money. He made money being a doctor; but beyond that, he was also a good businessman; and he invested his money in lots of stuff that also made money. So from that point of view, he could have bought anything he wanted, but somehow he was raised by his dad to not flaunt his money. He was always telling me that you shouldn’t put on airs - as he put it. And if you were lucky enough to have made a lotta money, you should not rub it in people’s faces. Besides, he was pretty cheap about a lotta things, so maybe it was just that he didn’t wanna spend the money for like a Mercedes.”
He glanced over at me, and in the dark I could just barely make out his eyes, but somehow I knew they were staring at my crotch.
“Anyway, somehow those chinos made me think of it.” He touched his thumb to his temple and inhaled. “You look really good in those.”
On this turn of events, I glanced quickly at Jase, who was lashed into the back seat. He had his head back against the seat and staring dreamily at the passing street lamps - little boy unconscious.
I leaned over and whispered to Pete, “Chinos make you hot?”
Pete swallowed hard and muttered, “And Volvos.” He glanced back quickly to see what condition Jace was in, then said, softly and quickly, “My first time was in a Volvo … a red one, and he was wearing chinos!”