November 21st, 2016
Hadley had been clean eleven and a half months. Furthermore, she’d stopped drinking beyond the occasional glass of red with dinner, or sharing a bottle of Krug with Simon on special occasions. She’d gained a healthy five pounds of lean muscle, and Bill had told her if she keeps her win-streak up she’d make partner in a year or two. Another two months and Adam would complete her family and she could be whole again. Well, that is if Simon ever came back from the bathroom. She and Simon had reservations in thirty minutes at L’Espalier, the swankiest restaurant in Boston, and Simon was busy mucking around the bathroom.
“Simon, what the hell. We’re going to be late!”
Something about a stomach ache. Since when does it take five minutes to piss and take a god damn pill? She’d bought a new dress, and even had her nails, hair, and makeup done. This was the first time, in a long time, she’d bothered to dress up. She heard the bathroom door open. A couple seconds later Simon walked into the room, smiling. Feigning indignation, Hadley asked “Are you going to make it a habit to keep me waiting? On my birthday, no less?”
Chuckling, Simon replied “My apologies, madam. One thing just led to another!”
“Oh, really? Please, do tell.” said Hadley, maintaining a straight face.
“Well first, there was the Ibuprofen. I just couldn’t break that child lock. Not for the life of me. So then, naturally I had to find a small reflex hammer. I mean, a large hammer wouldn’t do, I needed the pills in-tact. “
An abrupt pounding made Simon stiffen. Hadley’s face, previously contorted in laughter, suddenly grew concerned. “Who could that be? Were you expecting someone, Simon? Another…lover, perhaps?” At this their tension released and they both burst out laughing, Simon clutching his side as he opened the door.
Their laughter faded quickly upon seeing Tom’s sullen expression.
Warily, Simon asked, “Tom, what are you doing here? Did something happen?”
Hadley noted that Tom’s face, while distraught, was still attractive. He had piercing hazel eyes, and a full head of dark brown hair, like his brother. He also shared his wide, and well-defined Jawline with Simon.
Looking down, and then to the left, Tom sighed.
“What’s wrong?” asked Hadley softly. Tom winced, looking up to meet Hadley’s eyes. But he still wasn’t making eye contact. He was looking through her. What’s going on? Hadley’s hands began to shake in fear.
Mournfully, in his soft tenor, Tom said “There was an accident. My wife…” Hadley rushed forward and pulled Tom into her arms, as Simon fell back against the left door-hinge.
“I’m so sorry Tom, is Gia okay? What…what happened?” asked Hadley, pulling him closer.
Stricken, Simon asked “Tom, is Adam with you?” As tears ran down Tom’s cheek, he looked to Simon and shook his head once. Simon started to slide down the wall, until he sat on the ground leaning against the door. Hadley paused, looking to Simon and back to Tom in confusion.
“Wait… Where is Adam… Where is my Son!” shouted Hadley, pushing away from Tom. Simon’s face was buried in his calloused hands. “He is my Son! Mine, where is my Son! Tom, tell me!” Tom’s head hung low, his eyes wide, tears trickling. Hadley started to hit Tom’s broad chest with her fists. “Tell me!” She screamed, tears falling.
Shamefully, Tom whispered, “Gia was driving him home from his doctor’s appointment.” As he started to speak, Hadley stopped hitting him and stepped away, bouncing from foot to foot as if she were about to box. “She stopped at a red light, and when it turned green, she went. But another car ran the red. He broadsided Gia’s car. Gia and the other driver are both in intensive care. He was drinking. Adam…” Tom choked, struggling to continue “Adam didn’t make it.” No.
Lunging forward, Hadley attacked Tom, screaming “He is my Son!” Tom tried to grab her arms as she scratched at his face. “You were supposed to protect him, keep him safe!” Tom got a hold of both of her arms, wrapping his own around Hadley, restraining her as she struggled. “How could you let this happen!” Hadley bit Tom’s shoulder and he shouted in pain, maintaining his powerful grip around her shoulders.
“I’m so sorry. This wasn’t how it was supposed to go.” Tom shouted back, trying to shake free of Hadley’s maw. Hadley loosened her bite to spit in Tom’s face. Surprised, Tom let go of Hadley and she lunged at Tom, but Simon caught her around the waist, her blue dress tearing as she struggled towards Tom. Simon pulled her in, turned her around and hugged her, hard. Defeated, Hadley fell limp, arms hanging listlessly at her sides.
“He was my…son.” She sobbed in Simon’s arms. He was ours.
Next Chapter: https://bluebeard-art.com/chapter-ten/