Day 4 features an EXCLUSIVE scene from the characters of Faith by Brei Betzold.
“Come on Princess” I told my smiling, gurgling daughter “let’s go fix mama some breakfast.” I scooped her up out of her crib, quickly changed her diaper, and hobbled with one crutch into the kitchen. I was ready to be finished with all this physical therapy, aids to help me walk, pain.
I put Quinn in her high chair tossed some puffs down for her to munch on and pulled out what I needed to make my wife breakfast for mother’s day. I would have loved to bring her breakfast in bed, but carrying a tray of food was out of the question this year. I pulled out what I needed to make her omelets and a fruit salad, I couldn’t cook much but this I could manage or I hoped I could. I propped my crutch beside me on the counter and put all my weight on my good leg then started chopping veggies for the omelets, and fruits for the salad. While talking to Quinn, I was hoping to keep her happy long enough to finish breakfast. I wanted Mags to be able to sleep in, I just hoped our daughter cooperated with that plan.
I had just began cracking eggs into a bowl when the doorbell rang “who’s at the door princess?” I cooed. I grabbed my crutch and hobbled to the door cursing whoever was there, it was mother’s day and we were supposed to have been left alone until we went to Devi’s later for dinner. Seth and I both made sure that everyone understood that we had plans with our wives and kids until then. I finally made it to the door, pain shooting down my leg, ready to yell at whoever was standing there with holding down my doorbell. Quinn started crying and I heard Mags calling out to us, there went my plans on letting her sleep in.
“What?” I barked pulling the door open.
A woman I didn’t know looked up at me, she blinked then began checking me out “what do you want?” I asked again, not in the mood to play nice.
“I’m looking for my daughter” she murmured still eyeing me like I was a popsicle on a hot August afternoon.
“I don’t know who you’re looking for lady” I said and started closing the door.
“Mom” Mags said quietly behind me and I stopped looking back at my wife, she was staring at the woman standing out the door, and didn’t look happy.
“Margaret” she said smiling widely.
Mags adjusted Quinn on her hip and stared “what are you doing here?”
“I wanted to see you and my granddaughter.”
“Uh huh, why now?”
“Margaret” she whined “aren’t you going to let me in.”
I looked back at my wife and she shrugged, I moved out of the door nearly tripping when she pushed it open knocking into my crutch. I quickly put a hand against the wall to steady myself as I watched, who I guess was my mother in law come in pulling a giant suitcase behind her.
I looked over at my wife her lips where in a hardline watching the woman look around our house like she was looking casing the joint.
“Well Margaret you did well for yourself” she said walking past Mags.
“I’m sorry” Mags mouthed and then turned following her mother. I shut the door and hobbled into the living room where the woman was looking around, eyes glittering with something I didn’t trust.
“Mom what are you doing here?”
She waved Mags off “I told you I wanted to meet my grandbaby.”
“And I don’t believe you.”
I watched as the two women glared at one another, I walked over held my hands out for Quinn, Mags handed her over with a strained smile. I left the women going back into the kitchen and back to work on breakfast, I needed a few minutes to process what the hell was going on. I heard Mags raised voice coming from the living room I put Quinn back in her high chair, she started fussing again, so I pulled out one of her sippy cups she was learning to use filled it with some breast milk out of the fridge and put it on her tray.
“Ok Princess, let’s fix mommy breakfast” I took a deep breath and went back to work on cracking eggs. Trying to ignore the fight going on in my living room, I knew my wife well enough to know that she didn’t want me involved at this point.
I poured the egg mixture into the pan, tossing in some veggies and cheese keeping an eye on the pan. I didn’t want another kitchen fire, the first one Mags had started when we first moved back home had cost me enough in kitchen renovations.
Mags walked in a few minutes later, while I was sliding the first one on to a plate “thank you for this” she murmured leaning up and kissing my cheek.
I turned towards her “happy first mother’s day Mags” then I kissed her gently on the lips, trying to get it PG with our daughter watching.
I pulled back and she smiled at me then sighed “I’m sorry about that.”
I shrugged “don’t worry about it, so what’s going on?”
“Her latest boyfriend kicked her out, so she came here.”
“Ok” I said getting a bad feeling.
“She wants to stay and help out.”
“Help with what?”
She scowled “her grandbaby.”
“We don’t need help.”
“I know Drake.”
“Margaret” the woman called stomping into the kitchen “that room is too small, I’m just going to take the master bedroom ok.”
My eyes went wide and I stared down at Mags “No mom, that’s Drake and my room, you can use the guest room or you can go somewhere else.”
“But my stuff won’t fit in that small room.”
“Mother you are not staying here for long, do you understand that?”
She sniffed “you’d leave me without a place to live?”
“Yes” Mags barked “I would, you are not staying here.”
I turned around grabbing more of the egg mixture and started the second omelet, not wanting to get involved. This was between mother and daughter, I knew Mags didn’t have a good relationship with her mother, I just didn’t understand how bad it was.
Her mom screamed then stomped off “god that woman drives me insane.”
“Uhm here” I said passing her the first omelet “want to tell me what’s going on?”
“She needs someplace to live, and she’s not living here, I’ll kill her Drake, like shove a pillow over her face and hold it there until she’s stops moving kill her.”
“Ok Mags, go eat, we’ll work it out.”
She snorted “you don’t understand but you will soon.”
I finished the second omelet about the same time Mags mom came back she eyed me up and down, and I was really wishing I had a shirt on right about now. “I’m Carrie” she simpered and ran a blood red nail down my arm.
I thrust the plate at her “Drake you’re daughter’s husband.”
“Mmm” she purred eyeing my chest “rich and handsome, Mags get knocked up on purpose so you’d take care of her, smart girl.”
“Lady I don’t really give a fuck who you are, but you talk about my wife or daughter like that again I will throw you out on your ass” I told her, I was pissed now.
“Margaret you did really well” she said before walking past me grabbing my ass, I jumped and moved away nearly falling again.
I reached out grabbing the rest of the eggs and tossed into the pan and fixed myself some breakfast, I ate it standing at the kitchen counter. The entire time Mags mother was ranting about her ex, and how she thought she’d enjoy living in Dallas. All I knew was that this lady was not going to be staying here, I didn’t care whose mother she was.
After breakfast Mags took Quinn to get her ready for the day while I quickly cleaned up the kitchen, then I went back to our room to get ready myself. I also wanted to get Mags gifts, but when I walked into our bedroom I stopped and stared. There was a suitcase sitting on our bed that looked like it exploded, there were clothes everywhere.
“Mags” I called.
“Can you come here?”
I heard her huff then say something to Quinn but a moment later she was standing beside me staring as well.
“I am going to kill her” Mags said shoving the baby at me, I quickly grabbed her and watched my wife stomp off.
“Well Princess this isn’t exactly how I’d seen the day going” I kissed my daughters fuzzy head and walked in the room to change, and get Mags presents.
I put Quinn in the swing he had set up in my closet, it hung from a pole that we had set into the wall, so I could reach her. Things like this were spread throughout the house to make it easier on me when I was taking care of her, since I wasn’t able to easily reach down and pick her up off the floor. I quickly stripped down then pulled on a worn pair of jeans, and a My Misery Muse t-shirt, then grabbed the packages shoving them under my arm before picking Quinn up. I found Mags and her mother once again fighting in the living room, her mom in tears and Mags clenching and unclenching her fingers.
“Mags” I said quietly.
She looked over at me, and I could tell with the fire in her eyes she was pissed.
“She’s staying tonight, then leaves tomorrow.”
I nodded “if that’s what you want.” I was trying to be supportive, but when it came to family I didn’t have a whole lot of experience other than being pulled out when my parents wanted to impress people. I didn’t know what to do, other than support my wife with whatever she wanted to do, but that woman was not living here. I had only known her a short time, and I could see why they had a strained relationship. I was trying to figure out why Mags had ever thought she could be anything like this woman, they were complete opposites.
I let the packages fall on the couch then sat down letting the crutch that was my constant companion fall to the floor. I was going to have a hell of a time getting it later, but I needed one arm for Quinn and the other to help me sit down without falling.
“Ooo Tiffany’s” Carrie cooed looking over at Mags’ Mother’s day presents from Quinn and me. “Tiffany’s is good but not as good as Cartier.”
“Mom when in your life have you ever gotten anything from either?” Mags asked rolling her eyes.
She shrugged “never but it’s always good info to have” she said eyeing the blue boxes.
Mags looked over and me “what are those?”
She sighed “Drake you didn’t have to do this.”
“Yes I did, now open them woman.”
She walked over while glaring at me and picked up the first blue box “what is it?”
“Open it and you’ll know, now won’t you” I looked down at Quinn who had grabbed one of the boxes and was chewing on it “your mom is a pain in the ass.” Quinn looked up at me with a drool smile and I laughed.
“Shut up” Mags said but I could hear the laugh she was holding back.
I watched as she carefully untied the ribbon opening the box, then pulling out the velvet jewelry box inside she opened it and her eyes welled up “Drake this is amazing.”
I nodded “that’s from Quinn, she saw it and thought you needed it for your bracelet.” I said gesturing to the charm bracelet Quinn and I had gotten Mags for Christmas, we had been adding to it as events happened. Like our engagement and marriage, and now a yellow ducky that was similar to the one Mags had tattooed on her for Quinn a few weeks ago, for her first mother’s day.
“Thank you Quinn” Mags said wiping her eyes then leaning down kissing her on the cheek.
Carrie scoffed “he goes shopping at tiffany’s and you get a stupid duck charm, so he’s rich and cheap, just like a man.”
I glared over at the woman ready to kick her the fuck out of my ass but Mags was in her face before I could say anything.
“If you’re going to act like this, get the fuck out of my house” Mags said staring down at a wide eyed Carrie.
“Sorry” she murmured before breaking into tears “I don’t know why you hate me” she sobbed.
Mags turned and came back to where we were ignoring the crying woman and picking up the next package.
She eyed the envelope, then opened it and gasped “Drake?”
“It’s our honeymoon, since we couldn’t go on one when we got married, we go this summer.”
“You’re taking me to Europe.”
“Five countries, six weeks Devi is going to watch Quinn for us.”
“But what about your leg?”
“Already cleared it, we’ll have to take it slow, but we can do it.”
“Oh my god I love you” she screamed then kissed me,
“I’m glad you approve” I murmured then kissed her again.
“Definitely approve” she whispered kissing me again.
I took the box from Quinn and handed it over to Mags, Quinn started crying so I reached down grabbing a toy and handing her that, she stopped instantly and began chewing on her toy instead.
Mags opened this one and smiled “it’s beautiful” she said fingering the necklace then unlatching the locket to look inside.
“I saw it and thought of you.”
“I love it” she said staring down at the simple white gold necklace with an intricate locket, inside I had a picture of Mags, Quinn and me put in.
“Thank you Drake.”
I smiled up at her “you’re welcome baby.”
We spent the rest of our time curled up watching movies, before we had to go over to my sister’s place for the group BBQ. I enjoyed times like this when I had both of my girls in my arms, what I didn’t enjoy was Mags mother’s constant digs. For a woman who claimed to come here to see her grandchild for the first time since she was born, she hadn’t even glanced at the baby, let alone show a general interest in her. She did though have an interest in my net worth, and who my friends were, it became apparent that Mags never told her who her best friend really was.
“I love My Misery Muse” Carrie said eyeing me once again.
“That’s nice” I replied.
“I would so take Seth from that bitch wife of his, I mean really did he have to marry her just because he knocked her up.”
I began to see red, but Mags grabbed my hand and shook her head “mom I’m sure you don’t know the whole story.”
She waved her off “of course I do, I read all about it, coming after Seth for money, I mean really who would do that.”
“Mags” I growled.
“And that kid, he doesn’t look anything like Seth, I mean Seth is hot and that boy looks like he was hit with an ugly stick, a face only a mother could love I guess is what they say.”
“Mom” Mags shouted feeling me tense under her hand “shut up.”
She sighed “fine, but it’s such a waste.”
I leaned down so I could whisper in Mags ear “I want her gone.”
She sighed and nodded “what do you want to do about the BBQ later?”
“I don’t want her anywhere near my family.”
“Our family” Mags corrected glaring at me.
“I’m sorry” I whispered running a hand through my hair “our family.”
“I don’t either, but I don’t trust her to leave her alone here.”
I pulled out my cell and texted my sister that Carrie was here, wanting to know her take on the situation. When she responded I laughed loudly.
“What?” Mags asked eyeing my phone.
“Ah what did she say?”
“That we should tie her up, cover her in honey and leave her for the fire ants. I take it she doesn’t like your mom?”
Mags snickered “what do you think?”
“I think my sister is scary.”
She nodded “tell Devi I’m sorry we won’t make it.”
“Oh Devi already said if you bring that woman to her house she was breaking out the kitchen knives and lemon juice.”
Mags eyed me “your sister is scary.”
“It’s the hormones.”
“It’s his fault.”
“True” she said the snuggled into me.
“So what are we doing tonight?” Carrie asked.
“This” I said glaring at the woman.
“Oh” she said pouting.
We ordered in food, and spent the evening curled up watching movies, it was a good night for us, and it was rare for us to be able to spend time like this since we were both busy all the time. It would have been a perfect night if not for my Mother in law running her mouth or hitting on me in front of my wife. When Quinn finally passed out for the night Mags and I took that as our queue to go to bed as well, neither wanting to spend any more time with Carrie.
For the first time since we were married Mags and I went to bed to tense and angry to have sex. I rolled over and looked at my wife who laid there staring at the ceiling gritting her teeth.
“Mags I love you, but she has to go, I cannot have that woman in our home.”
She nodded “I know.”
“I’m sorry” I murmured and kissed her lightly.
“Me too” then she rolled over, I pulled her close to me but she pulled away. A few moments later I felt her shudder and knew she was crying, I pulled her to me once again and wrapped my arms around her as she cried.
“This is why I fought so hard” she murmured “I never want to be her.”
I kissed the back of her neck “baby you’ll never be her, you’re nothing like her.”
She nodded “I know that now.”
I stayed wrapped around her as we fell asleep, holding each other close.
We were woken early the next morning by Quinn, Mags rolled out of bed and went to get her while I stared up at the ceiling. I loved my wife, but that woman had been here for 24 hours and was already affecting my relationship. I didn’t want to be an ass, but I wouldn’t stand by and let her hurt my family, regardless of who she was.
“Here can you watch Quinn?” Mags asked walking back in the room.
I looked in her eyes and saw determination there “sure, but do you want me to talk to her?”
She shook her head “no, I have to do this.”
I nodded taking the baby “love you”
“I love you too Drake” she said leaning down and kissing me then Quinn, I watched as she stood steeling herself for what she was about to do.
She spun around and stormed out the door shutting it behind her, I pulled Quinn so she was sitting on my chest and began playing with her feet. I listened as they screamed at one another for a while, then a door slammed, I heard stuff being thrown around, there was more screaming then our front door slammed shut. I let out a breath, and I could feel the tension leave my body, I continued to play and tickle Quinn waiting for Mags to return. I knew she needed a little bit of time by herself to calm down so I gave it to her.
She walked in the room eventually, eyes red, but she looked like the world was removed from her shoulders.
I nodded and reached for her pulling her down on the bed for us “I’m sorry your mom wrecked your first Mother’s day.”
She smiled and kissed me “she couldn’t ruin it Drake, I spent the day with two of my favorite people.”
I smiled and kissed her back “love you Mags.”
Mags is a single mother, running her own business trying to make ends meet. Drake is an A&R guy for a local indie record company who has been working nonstop for a year. When both finally take a vacation with family and friends, they are forced to finally admit, at least to themselves, that they have feelings for each other.
When they go home, they find it even more difficult to put the past in the past and maintain a relationship strong enough to face the challenges ahead. Follow along as they try to make a relationship work while fighting demons of their own, through circumstances not of their making, and with family and friends trying to help.
About the Author
Stay at home mom to one very interesting little boy. I have been writing since 7th grade when my English teacher turned me onto poetry and never stopped. Thank you Mrs. Williams. In high school I had yet another English teacher inspire me to start writing short stories where I found my first true love, turning words into something so simple yet complex that it can move other people to love it or hate it, but in the end to feel emotions about something I created.
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Book 1 – My Misery Muse – Christine’s 4 STAR Review can be found here
Book 2 – Faith – Kim’s 5 STAR review can be found here