Thursday, June 25, 2015

#144: Lana and Declan's Day at the Pool

Lana had finally saved enough money to get herself out of her rented trailer and into a decent house,

 with a small but serviceable kitchen,

a dining/living area,

a bedroom/bath suite for Lana, a bedroom and second bath for her son, and a small terrace.


Kelly had convinced Derek that he should get Lana to take Declan to the Willow Creek Swim Club, to try to repair their relationship.

"Do I HAVE to go???" Declan whined.

"No," Kelly said calmly, "you don't HAVE to go, but I think you SHOULD go.  Because she's your mom."


Once at the swim club, Declan headed immediately for the StarCruiser jungle gym (there was one other kid already playing there).

"I'm going to stay until your mother arrives," Kelly told him.

"Don't worry about it--she'll probably be a no-show," Declan said dismissively.  "I'll just go back to your house when it's lunchtime."

Kelly found Lana in the bathroom.

"I'll be just next door if you need anything," Kelly said, somewhat uneasy.

"And you can always just bring Declan back to my house if things ... umm ... don't go well."

"I'm sure I can deal with my own kid," Lana said, with a slight edge in her voice.

As she was leaving the swim club, Kelly did not have high hopes for a reconciliation between Declan and his mother.

Declan had moved to the monkey bars.

"So, how're you doing?" Lana asked her son, whom she hadn't seen in weeks.

Declan waited a while before answering.

"What do YOU care?"

"I'm going to make lunch, Declan," Lana said.  "Come over to the picnic table in 20 minutes."

30 minutes later, Declan shuffled over.

"Go get yourself some milk from the vending machine," Lana told him.  "Do you have money?"

"Yes," he replied sullenly.  "Because Kelly ALWAYS makes sure I have money!"

 He got his drink,

 and sat down at the picnic table across from his mother.

Declan was very uncomfortable having to face the woman who'd dumped him on Derek and Kelly's doorstep.

Out of the corner of his eye, he spied his schoolmate, Erin Garvey, and called her over.  "Hey, Erin!" he yelled.  "Come have a hot dog!"

"Cool!" she said, taking one and sitting down.

"Hi," Lana said to the girl, trying to make the best of this interruption.  "I'm Lana Moriarty--Declan's mom."

 Ignoring Lana, Erin turned to Declan.  "I thought that OTHER blonde lady was your mom," she said.

Declan didn't feel the need to say anything, but was smugly happy at this (unintended) insult to his mother.


After Erin left, Lana told Declan her news.

"So, I bought a house in Oasis Springs," she said.  "It's small, but you'd have your own bedroom.  And your own bathroom."

Declan thought for a moment.  "No," he said flatly.  "I like it here."

"But this isn't your home, Declan," Lana said.  "You can't stay here forever."

"YES I CAN!" he yelled.  "Kelly says I CAN stay here forever!  And she's home all the time!  And she doesn't ignore me!  Or leave me alone!

"And I don't want to live with YOU in the FUCKING DESERT!!!"

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

#143: Lou's New Friend

Late the next afternoon Regina, Kelly and Lou (all wearing the new swimsuits they had bought at Zoe's Boutique) went to the Willow Creek Swim Club .

"So, Lou, did anything happen between you and Peter last night after we girls got back from the Rattlesnake Bar?" Regina asked.

"No, he was already asleep," Lou answered.

She continued.  "I saw him briefly this morning.  He said he was going out of town to an art festival for a few days."

Because of Lou's dark sunglasses, Regina couldn't see her friend's eyes, so she couldn't tell whether Lou was upset by this development.


If her situation with Peter was troubling her, Lou didn't show it, except to throw herself into her work even more than usual.

Having analyzed her patient's sample, Lou needed to log her results, but there was someone she didn't recognize on the computer.

"Excuse me," she said, short-tempered (as usual), "could you let me know when you're done???  Because I need this computer."

"Of COURSE you may have this computer," he said, good-naturedly.

"Who are you?" Lou inquired, imperiously.

"I'm Edwin Clinton," he replied.  "The new Medical Technologist."


Lana had caught her latest perp--a teenage boy--at the Solar Flare Lounge.

"What were you doing there???" she berated him.  "You're not even old enough to drink!!!"


After tossing the juvenile delinquent into a cell,

she received a new case assignment, and was working on her next case map.  Her phone rang.  'What now?' she thought.  'I'm busy!'

The caller was Cristobal Abasolo, who was Rafael's chauffeur, and who had driven Lana to and from Rafael and Zoe's house several times.

"Hello, Cristobal," she said, "is anything wrong?  Have you seen that strange man hanging around the playground again?"


After her shift ended, Lana stopped by Zoe's Boutique.

"Your store looks GREAT!" Lana exulted.

This was Lana's first visit to Zoe's Boutique.  (Lana was not much of a clotheshorse.)

"It's coming together," Zoe told her friend.  "We made some mistakes at first, but we're getting the hang of it now."

"So how's your police job going?" Zoe asked.

"Really well," Lana replied.  "I think I might be up for another promotion soon."

"You and I should really catch up--want to have dinner Sunday night?" Zoe suggested.  "Rafael and I don't open the store on Sundays."

"I can't," Lana said, looking a little sheepish.  "Cristobal asked me out to dinner for Sunday."

"Cristobal Abasolo?" Zoe asked, surprised.  "Rafael's chauffeur???"

"Yeah--that's not going to be any kind of problem, is it?" Lana worried.

"Of course not!" Zoe exclaimed, excitedly.  "Oooh--what are you going to wear?"

"That's why I'm here," Lana moaned.  "I guess I'm finally going to have a buy a nice dress."

"Well let's find you something, then!" Zoe said gleefully.


Dude went next door to Bill and Regina's house that evening.  He found both of them tending the garden.

"Hi, guys."

"Hi, yourself," Bill responded.  "What's up?"

"Umm, my cousin is coming for a visit--a SHORT visit--and I wondered if she could stay with you."

"Sure!" Regina chirped, delighted at the prospect of another houseguest.

"WAIT a minute!" Bill said sternly.  "Which side of your family is your cousin from???"

Dude laughed.  "Don't worry--she's on Papa's side!  And she has ALWAYS thought that my mother was nuts."

"What's the occasion for her visit?" Regina asked.

"Remember how Mama was so upset that I hadn't given Alice an engagement ring?" Dude explained.  "So Mama's solution is to have Ophelia fly over here from Greece to hand-deliver a very old and valuable family heirloom ring.  So that I can give it to Alice."


Lou was once again sharing the analysis room with the new guy, Edwin Clinton.

"Hey, Lou, I'm new in town," he said, "and I don't know anybody here.  Want to go out for drinks with me after work?"

Lou sighed, but didn't look up.  "Hey, I'm sure you're a 'great guy' and all, but I'm not looking for a boyfriend.  Or even just to get laid."

"Well, then you're in luck," Edwin grinned.  "I'm gay."