“We’re almost ready,” his mother said in a singsong voice. “Everybody’s here who is supposed to be, and we’re right on time. Kyle, can you seat Mother at the dining room table please?” She called as she passed by after taking the tray out of the huge stainless steel refrigerator.
Propped in the pantry doorway, Kyle didn’t immediately respond, even after his mom paused and looked at him with narrowed eyes.
“I know you heard me, now I need you to put the words into action,” she said.
“Yes ma’am,” Kyle muttered but he still didn’t move. He was hung over and still in a state of shock about Rye and Lacey, which made it unsettling to move. He’d had the whole night and a tortuous two hours during church service to consider the concept, he was still mad as hell. Rye was his best friend, but he was also the same man who’d had so much pussy his dick should have its own area code.
He questioned how Lacey could look past Rye’s history with so many women. Hell, he’d seen Rye in action too many times to count and she had too. In fact he and Rye often went out together and did what they needed to do with plenty of willing females. It was amazing to watch unfold. An attractive woman would catch Rye’s eye, he’d flash that lopsided smile and bam, the lady opened her legs, mouth or any damn other orifice that Rye wanted for as long as he wanted. Then he walked away before doing it all over again with someone else. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. Now Lacey, his sister, the last person he expected to fall under Rye’s spell had been added to the long list of conquered women. The mothafucker.
“Kyle Bishop. What is wrong with you? Move it!” His mother shrilled. Kyle, ignoring her rave, decided to enlist the troops for the cause. There was no way he was going to let his sister be used. They were the only ones in the spacious kitchen, but he pulled his mother into the pantry, pan of bruschetta and all, and closed the door.
“Son, have you lost your mind?” Lena stared at her oldest child like he had grown three heads. Didn’t he know they were only ten minutes from show time? Her Sunday brunches were famous for being beautiful and filling while harmonious. Not once had they started behind schedule. People were waiting and she was not going to break her streak. If her child had flipped, she’d have to get him some psychiatric help, but much later, after lunch.
“Whatever is going on in your head had better be explained quickly.”
“Did you know about Lacey and Rye?”
Lena paused, but kept her expression neutral. Yes she knew, and was livid about it, but she couldn’t deal with that little issue right now. Once again her middle child had thrown her for a loop with her latest act of defiance. Of course it hurt that Lacey hadn’t shared the news with her own mother first hand, but that was to be expected. That child knew how to keep he mouth closed until the last possible moment about news that could shake someone to the core. ‘I'm not going to Spelman. I'm not getting married. I'm not going into real estate. I'm going to be a cook, chef,’ whatever, Lena was always the last to know. When was Lacey going to learn that different wasn’t always better?
And her dear husband had been just as devious in the way he’d made the announcement. Just as dawn was breaking, he’d made fierce love to her, had really given it to her good and just as her trembling subsided he broke the news about Lacey and Rye. Of course she’d hit the ceiling—in fact had lost her religion for a few minutes as she ranted and raved about her child carrying on with a white boy. Never mind that Rye was loved by them all and practically a member of the family. Because she wasn’t given the chance to intervene, her baby was going to be subjected to a life of ridicule and misery, and she simply would not stand for it.
She immediately reached for her cell phone where Lacey’s number was programmed. When she realized the phone was nowhere to be found, she marched stark naked to her home office, pulled out her old-fashioned rolodex and reached for the house phone to call Lacey and to give her a piece of her mind. Then she realized the handset was gone. She raced to every room in the house where an outlet extension was supposed to be to find not a single one. That rotten snake of a husband, knowing her so well, had removed all of the phones from the house. Not to be outdone, she took a quick shower and dressed with the intent of driving to Lacey’s house. When she went to grab her keys from the crystal bowl in the hallway, they were gone. As were all the keys to every vehicle that she and her husband owned. Even the spare sets in the safe had been confiscated.
All the while her husband sat at the breakfast table reading the paper without saying a word as she ran around the house like a crazy person. When she realized she couldn’t call anybody, couldn’t go anywhere, she got ready for church and sat on the living room sofa. There she waited for John to take her to the early service they always attended on second Sundays so that she could come back and prepare dinner. Not a word was spoken until she reached her regular pew with a pasted on a smile for the other parishioners. For John she had a snarl. On the way back home, the only words spoken came from him when he said “leave it alone, Lena.”
After church, she’d donned an apron and started laying out her feast, forced to put her child’s betrayal on the backburner while she entertained a more than a dozen people. She could do no less, because it was expected of her, and she would deliver. Even if at this moment Kyle had her trapped in the pantry.
“I heard about the happy couple this morning,” Lena confirmed. “How long have you known about it?”
“Just found out last night. Even when he told me I didn’t believe that bastard until I saw it with my own eyes. I wanted to tear his arm out of the socket for touching her. Do you know how many women his hands have been on?”
Remembering John’s warning, Lena decided to play it safe for the time being. She had people to feed. “Actually I don’t want to know, and I don’t have time for this right now. Open the door.”
Kyle frowned at her calm words. “You’re okay with them being together?”
Lena pursed her lips in frustration at her otherwise smart child. “Kyle Bishop, I do not have time for this. Now kindly open the door, see to your grandmother like I told you. Keep it together until all of our guests have left. Do you understand me?”
Instead of answering, Kyle scowled and pulled open the door. Lena closed her eyes and said the prayer she’d been too angry to voice during service this morning and made her way to the dining room with a dazzling smile.
She’d already decided she would punish her husband and well for keeping her in the dark about Lacey and Rye. It would be at least a month until John even got a peak at her woman bits. If she could hold out until then.