Abraham Carson is single and not particularly loving it. However, since he's currently living with his recently widowed sister, helping with her four year old twins, he hasn't had a lot of time to do anything about it. He's met a woman, Helene Marcos, and finds himself greatly attracted. Only problem—she has a boyfriend. Inattentive, sometimes infuriating as he may be, that puts Helene off limits.
Once he got home from his jog, Abe showered and started a pot of coffee. It was only about 6:00, so he made pancakes. At 6:32, the twins bounded down the stairs. He heard his sister groaning from her bedroom. She'd been subjected to the Drago Missile Launch, too. She hobbled downstairs a few minutes later, dressed in comfortable, but professional, clothing.
"I have to teach them to tell time. And I need to lock my door. And put Eddie on a diet. Damn!"
"Yes, he landed on the goods this morning. They woke me at four fifty-two."
"I'm so sorry. I've tried putting them to bed later, it doesn't help."
"Put them both in military boarding school."
"Oh, ha ha."
"Or you can teach them how to tell time and lock your door."
"They'd just knock until I opened it."
He set coffee in front of her, with just the right amount of cream and sugar.
"If you weren't my brother, I would marry you."
"Thank you. Big shoes to fill, though."
Tina sniffled, wiping her eyes.
"No tears." He set another piece of bubble wrap in front of her.
Giggling, she ate her pancakes and popped the bubble wrap. "All life's troubles can be solved with a roll of bubble wrap."
"Except that pesky, and decidedly uncomfortable—itch." He adjusted his nuts and she knew exactly what he was talking about.
"It's been six months, sis."
"I know. But I can't even think about that. Not for awhile, yet. I just can't."
"Doesn't mean marriage. Find someone fun. Chet...."
"Is a child."
"He's a grown man and a really good one. His mama raised him right."
"Yes, she did. If I do half as well as their mom and ours, I won't feel like a complete failure."
"You're a great mom. Your kids are wonderfully well behaved. Don't you ever think they aren't."
"Are they going to hate me when they grow up?"
"For awhile, when they're teenagers. But hell, so did we. And look at us now. Warping the tender minds of a new generation."
"When are you going to have tender minds of your own to warp?"
"Need a woman for that." He started loading the dishwasher.
"Helene is nice," she teased.
"Helene has a man," he snapped.
"It may not be serious."
"She's planning the office Christmas party for him."
"Maybe he's a really pushy boss. Women don't like pushy."
"Don't, okay? It's not meant to be."
"You don't know that."
"I can read the signs, Tina. And one of them is this big." He held his arms all the way out. "And it says, Stay Outta My Pussy in big red letters."
"What's a pussy, Mommy?" Emmett asked from the doorway.
"It's another name for a cat." She flashed an angry glare at her brother.
"Why do you have to stay out of it?" Violet asked her uncle.
"Because it's rude to violate a pussy. Go get dressed," Abe replied.
"What's violate?" Emmett asked.
"Never mind. Go." He snapped his fingers loudly, pointing up the stairs.
Two towheaded children ran up the steps to their room.
"You'll have to teach me that trick."
"Spend six weeks in Marine boot camp."
"Thanks, I'll pass."
He winked at her. "No, you wouldn't."
© 2016 Dellani Oakes