“Hey Liam … look at this one. Isn’t that just amazing?!” Tara held up a magazine, Liam barely looked up from the TV.
“Yeah, that’s cool.” he muttered, continuing on as before.
“You didn’t even look!” Tara protested.
“OK, what was it?” she laid the magazine face down into her lap.
“Something that would look amazing on you.” he smirked, still focused at the TV.
“Really? You think so?”
“Sure.” he said, hoping this would satisfy her.
She now held up the page, he turned to look at it and thought he didn’t see right.
“Is that …? Why the ..?! What the FUCK?!”
“An engagement ring! Yes. So what?” she proclaimed, gently petting the page in the magazine, then looking at her hand.
“Well, congrats. Who’s the lucky guy?” his words were dripping with sarcasm.
“You, silly! I love you, you love me, might as well make it real, right?” she shrugged.
“We’re 15. That’s fucked up! You’re seriously getting up the in the coockoo region!” he shook his head.
“You’re 15. I am 16. In the Middle Ages, that was a normal age to get married.”
“I’d say you missed your time by a few hundred years.”
“Why not get married? Are you still pining after Michelle? You know she has a new boyfriend. He play LaCrosse! Saw her with him in the bleachers, they were REALLY getting into it.”
“FUCKING Fantastic.” his mood had dropped even lower. Sore subject. Still.
“So you’re still in love with her?” her question was direct.
“NO! Now drop it.” he was really getting angry now.
“Then why is her picture still up on your wall?”
“Oh my FUCKING GAWD!” he yelled, jumped up and stomped out of the living room.
Tara followed him wordlessly into his room, where he ripped down the framed photo of him and Michelle, dumping it into a drawer.
“Happy?!” he barked at Tara, then plopped down at his desk, rubbing his temples as this drama was giving him a headache, then began scrolling through his phone.
“It should be us up there.” she pulled a framed picture from her large messenger bag and hung it up. “Perfect.” she smiled, sitting down on his bed, admiring the new décor in her boyfriend’s room.
“Yeah, great. Good thing you came prepared.” Liam replied drily.
She was really getting on his nerves now.
She looked at him, got up, then quickly grabbed his phone from him.
“WTH? Gimme my phone.” he reached for it, she pulled her hand away and out of his reach.
“No. Let’s see what you have been up to!” she started scrolling through his messages. Liam’s blood began to boil.
“Give it back!”
He shoved her onto the bed, while winding his phone out of her hands.
“OWW!” she complained.
“Never do that again!” he warned, as he put his phone into his pocket. Why did she have to be so aggravating tonight? He sat at his desk and stared out the window.
When he heard faint sniffling sounds from the bed, his eyebrows – still drawn close together with anger – relaxed. He turned around and when he saw her sad expression, eyes welling up, he realized he should not have been so rough with her.
He closed his eyes when he heard her speak.
“I am sorry, Liam. I overreacted. Please. I’ll be good, promise!” she gave him puppy eyes and he felt guilty for manhandling her so he walked over to her, then let her pull him onto the bed with her by the hand he was using to stroke her cheek.
“It’s that chick from the bowling alley, right?” she whispered, as she laid up against him.
“What chick?” Liam asked, getting mildly annoyed again.
“That pretty one. I heard the boys talking about her … and you.”
“We just talked.” he shrugged, downplaying it, gently petting her hair.
“You are a bad liar, Liam Cameron. What is it about her you like better? Blonde hair? I can dye mine. Her clothes? I can wear something else. Sex? I can do whatever you want, anything, anytime.” she sat up, snuggling into his arms, Liam shook his head.
Blaine was just about to walk in, heard her last words, and immediately turned on his heel outside Liam’s door and walked back to the kitchen where he had come from.
“Did you ask her about food?” I inquired. He was back way too quick.
“Cos she is proposing sexual favors to our son and I am not going to cockblock the kid.”
“BLAINE! For heaven’s sake! I’ll go.” That Blaine. And I am not going to let them do THAT!
“You are.” Blaine wrapped his arms around my waist.
“I don’t want them doing the naughty just a wall away from us!”
“Why not? We have with him a wall away. Many a times.”
“Crude!” I shook my head.
“Maybe, but true, though.” he grinned and kissed me.
Days later, a Saturday, I was straightening up the house, Liam’s door was cracked as he had his girlfriend over again. I heard them talking. Good, means they were not kissing. Or worse. I resumed in other rooms.
“Liam, you still have not asked me to the dance.” Tara complained.
“No, you didn’t! I bet you are waiting to ask that other chick first!”
“What other chick?” he sounded annoyed again.
“The one from the bowling alley.”
“Not THAT again.” he rolled his eyes.
“Liam … you have been so distant of late. Is that because of her?”
“Hello, school, mid-terms. I am not a nerd like you, who knows all books backwards and forwards.”
“Then ask. I can help you, tutor you.” Tara offered.
“Every time you do, we end up doing a lot of other things, except learning.”
“Well, you’re just so dang hot. Do you think I am hot too?” she inquired.
“Do you think I am pretty?”
“OMG – yes sure.” he really responded more on auto-pilot now.
“Then ask me to the dance.”
“What if I don’t want to go to the dance? Costs money, and all to just stand around drinking non-alc beverages doing nothing interesting while being watched by adults. I can have that at home.”
“We could sneak away…”
“We can do that now.”
“OK. What if I said I was pregnant.” she said, watching him closely.
“DO WHAT?” he turned and looked at her like she had grown another head.
“I am pregnant by you.”
“No, you’re not. I am very sure of that.” he exclaimed.
“What if the condom broke.”
“Except it didn’t.”
“You don’t know that. But I do. I am pregnant.”
I had made my way back around and was passing by again when the p-word caught my attention. Pregant? Oh please, no! I stood closer to the door … and closer … and then jumped with a startled, muffled scream.
“Blaine!” he had grabbed my waist to scared me.
“Busted!” he grinned, as the door now opened fully and Liam was right in front of me. It was blatantly obvious that I had been eavesdropping.
“Mom! Dad! WTH?”
“Your mother had an itchy ear and thought scraping it along the walls could help.” Blaine outed me, grinning.
“Yah, I bet. Seriously mother, privacy, please?”
“I just heard something that should not be taken lightly.”
“Fine, announcement – my girlfriend is not – I repeat NOT – pregnant! Announcement over! Everybody resume their own shit now.”
“What if I am?” she interjected.
“Then not by me! Why don’t you leave anyway? You are getting way too clingy and I am so sick and tired of your shit, Tara. You are worse than those two, and they are major helicopter parents!”
Liam grabbed his keys and ran out the door, leaving us with a crying girlfriend, probably soon ex-girlfriend – who ran after him once the inital shock had worn off.
“That went well. I give this relationship maybe another week.” Blaine predicted drily.
“Blaine, that is cruel.”
“Why? I am not dating her. If I did, she’d have been history weeks ago.” he smirked, shrugging.
“Poor girl, though.”
“She is pretty clingy, I wouldn’t put up with that either. I just can’t see them work out.” Blaine said plainly.
“You just want him to date that other girl, don’t ya.” I winked at him.
“Maybe. He needs his own Vik, and I think that one has potential.” he replied, grinning back at me.
“Thanks a lot. I like her, but think she is a bit … arrogant. Kinda high and mighty.”
“Screw you, Cameron!”
We used the time without a teen in the house for some personal entertainment a la Blaine. Yes, I am blaming him for such things now.
At some time around 3 AM Liam finally came back home. We were watching the 100th re-run of an action movie, when he joined us.
“Hey son. How goes it?”
“Don’t ask. Tara’s been blowing up my phone. I really think she has a couple screws loose. She’s going all ‘Fatal Attraction’ on me.” he handed Blaine the phone, his text messages pulled up. I read over Blaine’s shoulder.
I have to admit, some of that really made us think she might have some mental issues. But still, the things she sent to my son were strong tobacco. If Blaine was right and Liam broke up with her, I did not even want to imagine what she would do.
“Pimp her out to one of your buddies. Maybe Corbin likes her. Let him deal with her. She’d be happy, he’d get some and you are off free.” Blaine crudely suggested.
“Blaine!” I reprimanded.
“Great plan dad. Except I like Corbin and would never wish her onto any of my bros!” Liam smirked.
Two weeks had gone by since. Tara had been by the house a dozen more times, but Liam had been dodging her. Few times, she even sat out in the front yard doing her homework, waiting for Liam, who circumvented the misery by climbing the fence to the back yard and entering that way. One of us, usually Blaine, would eventually go out and find a away to persuade her to go home. It was getting annoying. And my compassion started wearing thin. She had even bugged him to turn her, which he refused. She kept talking about engagements and weddings. Really odd for a 16 year old girl. She was getting on Blaine and my nerves, I can only image how Liam must have felt.
One day Liam came home with Leonie again.
That boy was pulling all levels of the flirt register, but she just was not having it.
“Umm Liam, you’ll need both hands on the desk if I am to help you with this.”
“No, I don’t.” he flashed his most charming smile.
“You do, because if one of them goes back where I just slapped it away from one more time, I am going to break it, and go home. Is that sinking in?”
“Oooh, so rough .. I like rough…”
“I am not joking.” she went to his bed and reaching for her coat.
“No, no, wait, I was just kidding. Just teasing a bit.”
“Hint: don’t go for a career as a Comedian. By the way, what do you want to be when the time comes?”
“I don’t know. I’ll worry about that eventually.”
“Right, like from the unemployment line?”
“We’re 15! OMG, chill!”
“And if you want to get into certain colleges, now is the time to get your shit together … get the right grades in the right subjects, find the right after school stuff … and start figuring out where you wanna go with all that.”
“Maybe I don’t want to go to college.”
“Great plan, Liam. Great plan.”
“OK, fine, what are your plans?”
“Ha, how much time do you have?” she explained in great detail very clear ideas on where she wanted to be one day.
“So basically you want to sit in an office all day, shoveling through paper? Should talk to my mom, that’s what she does.”
“I just might. She works at Auditore Financials, right? Perfect place. Do you know if they offer internships?”
“Don’t know, don’t care. I can ask her though. Or the owner, did I mention he is a friend of our family?” Liam showboated.
“Would you mind? That would be awesome! OK, fine, let’s get back to this here. Where is your homework from yesterday for this?”