Note from SweetPoyzin: Deep breaths, people.
“Harper has agreed to meet you. She says if you are really interested in getting to know her, you must come to her birthday party with a scooter.”
“I think she is testing how much you really want to be in her life.”
Harper’s birthday was in less than a week. She’d be a teen. Nearly impossible for me to fathom that fact.
“Alright. I’ll do her one better and I will get her a car. I know that your step-daughter’s birthday is coming up, too. Talk to Peter and let him know that I will get Kylie a car too if he is alright with that. I’ve heard from your mother–er…my source–that the two girls might as well be twins so I wouldn’t want to give one a car and not the other.”
“Who the hell are you!?”
“People change, Penny. I missed out on 16-years of my daughter’s life. I’m lucky that I got a second chance. My new wife is wonderful. A lot like you, actually. You’d love her. And we have a great son. But this new life really throws in my face how much I’ve missed with Harper. I mean…if you had the chance to do it all over again, would you make changes?
“How could anyone know that answer, Xander, unless you’ve crossed that bridge? Come on, now we’re getting stupidly philosophical. Let me kick your ass at pool.”
“Pregnancy looks good on you, Penny. Do you know what it is yet?”
“A girl. Emma Elizabeth. I’m due in just a couple months.”
We joked around just like we did back in the day. It was easier now that time has smoothed over some of my wounds. It was comfortable being with him and not in the least as awkward as I thought it would be.
“Alright, I’ll see you on Saturday. Harper will be happy to see you.”
We left the bar and headed home.
“…coma…pronounced DOA…may never regain consciousness…fetal death…”
…I don’t own that plant…this is not my bedroom…
“…some brain activity…do not know the extent of the damage…”
…there is a sink in my bedroom…this is not my bedroom…
“…shock…adverse effect on health and recovery…suicide…depression…do not reveal details…”
…that is my sister…
“You’re awake!? Don’t move. I’ll get the doctor.”
Finally. Something I recognize.
“Welcome back, Mrs. Sutton. How’s my best patient today?”
“I’m Dr. Pagano. I wasn’t sure I’d get to introduce myself personally since you gave us quite a scare there. You’ve been my patient here at Whispering Pines for 18 months.”