How does that feel, Mr. Lennon?” asked Doctor Fenton. John turned his arm experimentally and made a fist, then flexed his fingers.
“It feels pretty damned good, actually,” he replied. “Aches a bit, like, but not bad. Feels a little...heavy.”
“The muscles have atrophied a bit, but a few exercises should put you right in a week or so. I’ll give you a rehabilitation instruction sheet before you leave,” the doctor told him. “Stop by the front desk on your way out and make another appointment for a week from today.”
Mary was in the waiting room and when John came out, she smiled and got to her feet.”Ready to go home, baby?” she asked, linking her arm in his.
“I am,” he replied, “And I’ll even drive us.”
John got behind the wheel of his car with a happy sigh. “Feels as though I haven’t driven properly in a year,” he said. He started the engine and pulled out into the street. “C’mere, love.”
Mary moved over to sit near him, and he put his arm around her.”Ah, yeah,” he said softly. “That’s what I was missin’.” He took an unfamiliar turn and Mary looked at him, puzzled.
“Where are we going?” she asked.
“Oh,” he replied, “Just a place I know.”
Mary settled against him and watched the scenery become more and more verdant. At last John pulled off the main road and took the car down an unpaved road running alongside a small river.
“This is nice,” Mary told him, “Are we almost there?”
“Just about,” John said, turning down yet another unpaved road.
“How on earth did you ever find this place?” asked Mary.
“Paulie showed me,” he replied. “He used t’ come here a lot, an’ once all four of us came out here so he could take some pictures of us without havin’ t’ worry about bein’ disturbed.”
“Why are we going there?” Mary wanted to know. She thought that she was beginning to have some idea.
“Oh, just a little ride, like,” he said casually. “We’ll see what happens. Here we are, we’ve arrived.” He pulled the car off the little road and got out of the car, then went around to open Mary’s door for her. He took her hand and she got out and stood beside him.
“Remind ye of any other place ye’ve seen?” he asked.
“It looks sort of like that place near your house on Menlove Avenue,” she said. “Your thinking place.”
“That’s just what I thought,” he said, nodding. “Beautiful, innit?”
“Remember what we did when we were there together for the first time?” he prompted.
“Yes. Too bad every time we’ve been there since, we’ve been accompanied by children.”
“Let’s do it here,” he suggested.
Before Mary could reply, he took her into his arms and covered her mouth with his own. She melted against him; it felt so wonderful to be held in both his arms again after his weeks in the shoulder cast. Any objections she might have had to his making love to her out in the open were forgotten when he lifted her in his arms and carried her to a mossy spot beneath a huge old oak and laid her down on the ground. Mary wrapped her arms about his neck and pulled him down for another kiss, eagerly searching his mouth with her tongue as he answered the kiss with rising passion, his hands deftly adjusting their clothing to allow himself free access to her lush, willing body.
“Mary,” he whispered, “I need ye, gurrl.”
Mary looked up into his face, the face she had loved for so many years, and the fierce burning in his eyes made her feel weak and dizzy. He slipped into her quickly, taking her breath away with the always powerful, shocking pleasure of his initial penetration. He closed his eyes briefly with a low, gutteral moan, then began seeking his rhythm, watching her face, his hands running over her skin as though of their own accord, seeming to know their way with no prompting. He took his time; they had already made love that morning at home, so there was no real desperation at first. He lifted her blouse and lowered his head to tease her nipples with his warm, talented tongue, and Mary shivered beneath him and let out a tiny moan.
“More,” she whispered, “Faster, love, deeper.”
“Demandin’ wench, aren’t ye,” he murmured. “All right, ye asked for it.” He withdrew and got to his feet, pulling her up with him. He pushed her against the tree as he had on their honeymoon and lifted her, holding her legs, pressing her against the smooth bark, slipping back inside of her easily. Mary held on to him and he began to move again, ramming himself deeply into her body with long, sure, even strokes. Mary felt as though she would lose her mind; in a very few minutes she had gotten to the point where she became sure she could not bear any more, the feeling had grown so intense.
John’s breathing had become harsh and erratic, signaling his imminent release. “Are ye ready for me, gurrl?” he growled. His eyes were dark and desperate.
Mary whispered that she was, and he doubled his speed, hammering relentlessly into her. She held on and let conscious thought slip away, riding the rapidly rising swell up and over the edge, crying out his name as she came. He pushed deep into her, filling her, releasing everything he had to give with a deep, satisfied groan. They slid to the ground, wrapped together and kissing languidly as the throbbing pleasure they both felt slowly receded and finally ended.
“Jesus, Mary, ye make me feel like I’m in me twenties again,” he told her as he got himself the obligatory cigarette.
“You mean you’re not?” she asked, nestling against him with a happy sigh. “You could have fooled me.”
They sat together beneath the tree for quite a while before finally getting up and returning to the car, not wanting to leave what they had shared behind, each of them committing the place and the feeling to memory.
On the way home, Mary watched his face as he drove. Beautiful was a perfect word to describe him. She knew his face and his body as well as she knew her own, knew his scent and the nuances of his facial expressions, his best qualities and his faults, and together all these things made him irresistibly desirable and infinitely precious to her. He was terrible in his wrath, magnificent in his passion, achingly sweet in his moments of wistfulness. He was everything she had ever wanted, everything she needed, everything she had ever dared imagine and more. He was her heart’s desire and the fulfillment of all her wishes, hopes, and dreams. He was her love, and she was forever his, irretrievably lost in the magic and the wonder of the man.
George had invited Jasmine to have dinner with him and his parents that evening. He was anxiously waiting for her to arrive, pacing in the living room and looking out the window.
“Ye don’t hafta watch out th’ window, son,” said John in an amused tone. “She’ll hafta buzz at th’ gate t’ get in; ye’ll hear her when she gets here.”
“I know, I just really want you guys to like her, Dad,” George told him, “I’m really getting serious about her.”
“How much do ye know about this gurrl?” asked John, lighting a cigarette. “Ye haven’t known her very long.”
The buzzer sounded, and John buzzed Jasmine through the gate. She parked and got out of the car, and he let out a long, low whistle.
“She’s a looker, I’ll give ‘er that,” he said.
“She’s a lot more’n that, Dad,” George said with a smile. “She’s dead sexy.”
“Is she? I’ll take yer word for it,” John replied, getting up from the piano and going into the kitchen. “I’ll tell yer mum yer gurrl’s here.”
George opened the door and took Jasmine into his arms, kissing her like a starving man.
“Mmmm,” she purred, “Are your parents home, or are we alone?” She rubbed herself against him suggestively.
“They’re here, ya wanton wench,” he said under his breath. “They’re in the kitchen. Let’s go in and you can meet ‘em. We’ll go to my room afterwards.”
“Is that allowed?” she asked.
“Dunno,” he replied. “I’ve never done it, but I think it’d be all right. My dad knows how it is...my mum might not be comfortable with it, but he’ll fix it for me, I think.”
“Your dad sounds like a wonderful man,” Jasmine told him, caressing his erection through his jeans.
John came into the room and stopped short when he saw what Jasmine was doing. “Hello,” he said uncertainly. “Am I interruptin’ anythin’?”
“Um, Dad, I wanna get somethin’ out in Bobby’s van. I’ll just take Jasmine with me...tell Mum we’ll be back in a few, willya?” said George, opening the door again.
“Sure, I understand,” replied John with a wink. “I’ll distract yer mum, just be quick about it. Dinner’s nearly ready.”
“Thanks,” George said, pulling Jasmine outside with him.
John? Where are George and Jasmine?” asked Mary when he went back into the kitchen. “You said she was here.”
“Oh, yeah, well, she wanted to have him look at ‘er car, she was havin’ a bit o’ trouble with it,” John said. He hated to lie to Mary, but he couldn’t very well tell her that their son was having a quickie with his girlfriend in the back of Bobby’s van.
“Oh. Well, all right, I hope it won’t take long,” she said. “Help me get the plates on the table, honey, won’t you?”
“In a minute,” he told her. He put his arms around her and kissed her gently, then again with more force. He was feeling decidedly excited. Thinking about what was going on outside had him remembering what he and Mary had done that morning by the river, and he found himself wanting her again. He kissed her again, deeply and thoroughly. When he released her at last, she was flushed and breathing hard.
“What got into you?” she asked. “My goodness, love, you’re like a teenager, sometimes! Not that I’m complaining, but I don’t want them to catch us. What would she think?”
“I doubt she’d mind,” he replied drily.
“What does that mean?” Mary asked, looking at him curiously.
“Nothin’, only that she knows we’re married, so why should it bother her?”
A noise at the door made John look up. “Look, here they are,” he said, stepping away from Mary. “Jasmine, this is George’s mum, Mary, me wife of nearly twenty-eight years.” He put an arm around her shoulders and gave her a brief hug, then let her go and went to get the plates.
“How do you do, Jasmine,” said Mary. “George tells us you met while he was on tour in America.”
“That’s right,” said the girl. “I went on the second half of the tour with him and I’ve been seeing him ever since. You have a wonderful son, Mrs. Lennon.”
“Thank you, but please, call me Mary,” she replied. “Won’t you sit down, Jasmine? Here, beside George.”
They sat at the table and held hands under it while Mary put dinner on the table.
After dinner, George took his father aside while the women were washing the dishes.
“Would it be all right if Jasmine went up to my room with me?” he asked. “I know I’ve never asked before, but she wants to stay the night. If it’s not okay with you and Mum, we’ll go back to her place, and I’ll be home in the mornin’.”
“I’m not sure how she’d react, actually,” John said thoughtfully. “As ye said, it’s never come up, but I’ll have a talk with her about it. Yer twenty-one, I don’t see how it would be a problem.”
The buzzer signaled someone opening the gate, and John looked outside. “It’s Stevie an’ Emmy,” he said. “I guess they’ll be in for the night. I’ll go talk t’ yer mum now.”
Mary was a little hesitant but when John reminded her that their son was twenty-one, she reluctantly agreed.
“I’d feel better if I thought she loved him,” Mary said. “There’s just something about her I don’t quite trust. I can’t put my finger on it, but there’s something about her that I just don’t like.”
“Ah, it’s probably just because ye feel like she’s takin’ yer little boy from ye, love,” John told her. “Same as I felt when it was th’ gurrls.”
“Maybe,” Mary replied, “But I’m going to keep my eye on that girl just the same.”
John woke in the middle of the night as was his habit and went out to the living room to see if there was anything on television. Finding nothing, he selected a movie and stuck it into the VCR. When it was about half over, he nodded off on the couch.
The movie had ended when John woke to the sensation of Mary taking him into her mouth. It was dark in the room, and he let out a moan and put his hands in her hair, encouraging her to move faster. He was a moment away from finishing when the light came on to reveal George framed in the doorway, a look of shocked disbelief on his face. John looked down and saw, to his horror, that it was Jasmine on her knees in front of him. He jumped to his feet with a hoarse cry and Jasmine ran to George.
“He made me do it!” she sobbed. “He said that if I didn’t--do that for him, he would tell you that I tried to seduce him!”
George stood staring at his father, his arms going around Jasmine protectively. “How could ya do this to me, Dad?” he asked. “If I hadn’t seen it myself, I never would’ve believed that you--that you would--” He fought for control, finally grabbing Jasmine by the arm and pulling her toward the door.
“George, I’m tellin’ ye, I din’t know it was her!” cried John, tucking himself back into his jeans and fastening them.
Mary came running in, her face white. “What’s wrong?” she cried. “What’s happening?”
“Ask your husband,” said George, furious. “Ask ‘im what he was doin’ down here with Jasmine while we were sleepin’.”
“I’m tellin’ ye th’ fuckin’ truth,” John told him firmly. “I wasn’t doin’ anythin’ wrong! I thought it was yer mother!”
“You know what, Dad? I think you just can’t control yourself. I know how that is, I got it from you, but I like to think that if I had a wife, I wouldn’t hurt her.”
“Just wait a minute!” John shouted. “I told you, I din’t--”
“Save it. Dad,” growled George. “Fuck you!” He pressed the button to open the gate and yanked Jasmine out of the house and down the steps.
The car sped out of the driveway with George at the wheel, leaving John staring after it.
“John, what happened here?” asked Mary. “All the shouting woke me. What was George talking about? Were you doing something you shouldn’t with that girl?”
John looked injured at that. “No, ‘course not. I mean, I was, but I didn’t know it was her touchin’ me. Th’ lights were out, an’ I was asleep here on th’ settee. I woke up with what I thought was you workin’ at me, then th’ lights came on an’ I saw it was her. She told George I’d made her do it, an’ he believed her, she carried on so,” he explained. “Honestly, Mary, d’ye believe for a second that I’d ever risk losin’ ye for a tumble with a fuckin’ chippie like her?”
Mary looked into her husband’s face. There was no sign of deceit in his eyes. “I believe you, John,” she told him. “I told you there was something about that girl I didn’t like, and I know what it is, now. She doesn’t care anything about our son. I think she was just using him to get to you.”
She went to John and he took her gratefully into his arms, thanking God that she had believed him.
“What’re we gonna do,Mary?” he asked softly. “He fuckin’ believes her. He seriously believes that I was--Jesus, love, I can’t even fuckin’ say it.”
“He’ll come around,” Mary assured him. “A girl like that will betray herself sooner or later. Come on, darling, it’ll be light soon. Let’s go back to bed.”
John followed her, wondering what he could say to his son to get him to believe the truth.
Daddy, guess what?” asked Emily a few days later.
“I haven’t a clue,” he responded. “Should I be sitting down? Is it summat important?”
“No, don’t be silly. I wanted to tell you that Stephen got a new job. No more office boy at the law concern...he got a computer programming position! He’ll be making a lot more money, and he’ll be getting to do what he really loves.”
“Well, that’s good news,” said her father. “I’m happy for him.Oh, by th’ way, th’ builders’ll be startin’ on yer flat tomorrow. Wanna take a look at th’ plans with me?” He got the blueprints and unrolled them on the table in front of her.
“I have it all figgered out so that th’ two o’ ye’ll have plenty o’ room,” he told her. “This’ll be yer kitchen here, then a bath here, an’ this is yer sittin’ room. Yer bedroom’s right here, beside th’ kitchen. Whattaye think?”
“It’s lovely,” she said, “But you’d better add another room or two.”
“Ye want a computer room? Cos I was figgerin’ ye’d keep yer computer gear here, on this wall in th’ sittin’ room. There’s an openin’ in th’ wall here between this room an’ th’ kitchen, so ye c’n see through when Stephen’s at the computer an’ yer in th’ kitchen,” he explained.
“That’s nice, I like that idea,” replied Emily, “But we’ll need a nursery, Daddy.”
“Yerwhat? What for? Not already!” John exclaimed. “Emmy, ye need time t’ be alone together first. Julia an’ Bobby were together for years before they had Robby. Ye don’t mean t’ tell me that yer plannin’ on gettin’ preggers this soon in yer marriage. Please tell me yer not.”
“I’ve been to the doctor this morning, Daddy,” Emily told him. “I’m expecting a baby in eight months.”
John was astonished. “But I thought ye were on th’ Pill,” he said. “Yer mum told me ye were.”
“I was, but evidently it’s not a hundred percent foolproof,” Emily replied. “I got pregnant in spite of it, and it’s too late to worry about it now. Besides,” she pointed out, “You an Mummy adopted Julia before you were even married.”
“Does yer mother know?”
“No,I wanted to tell you first. You should have seen your face, Daddy!” Emily laughed. “I’ll tell her as soon as she gets back from the market. I think she’ll be happy for me, though. Aren’t you happy for me, Daddy?”
“Emmy, ‘course I am. I just think ye might’ve waited a bit...I s’pose it couldn’t be helped. C’mere, baby, an’ sit on me lap. Ye know I’ll be behind ye no matter what ye ever do.”
Emily sat on his knee and put her arms around his neck, laying her cheek against his shoulder.
“Thank you, Daddy,” she whispered. “I know the timing’s not perfect, but it will be all right. We did want to have children, just not so soon. I hope Stephen won’t be too upset.”
George came by the house that evening to pick up some of his things. “I’m movin’ in with Jasmine,” he told his parents. “I’ll not stay in the same house with him any longer,” he added, looking pointedly at his father.
“Son, I keep tellin’ ye, I was asleep when she started on me,” he said wearily. “It wasn’t me who did anythin’ wrong. It was all her doin’. George, th’ gurrl’s no good, she’s gonna break yer fuckin’ heart.”
“I don’t wanna hear it,” George replied, stalking off to his room.
“Yeah? Well, ye c’n not wanna hear it all ye like, me lad, it’s still th’ fuckin’ truth!” called John after him. “Don’t come runnin’ t’ me for sympathy when she finally shows her true colors an’ ye see ‘er for what she is!” He turned to Mary. “She’s gonna hurt him bad,” he said sadly.
While George was collecting his things, Jasmine was where he’d left her, at Ringo’s house with Jason.
“‘Scuse me, Jazz,” said Jason, “But I’ve gotta date tonight, an’ I really need to get ready. You’ll be okay here on your own, won’t ya?”
“Sure,” she said, “Go on ahead. I’ll see if anything’s on TV.”
Ringo came into the room a few minutes later. “Oh, hi,” he said. “Where’re George and Jason?”
“Jason’s in the shower and George is over at his house getting some of his things to take over to my flat,” she replied. “Where’s your wife?”
“She’s gone to pick Lee up at her dance class,” he replied. “Should be back any time now, I guess. Is there anythin’ I can get ya?” he asked.
“Just one thing,” she said, getting to her feet. She went to him and put her arms around his neck. She kissed him, but he drew back and pushed her gently away.
“Here, now, girl, I can’t be doin’ that,” he said. “First of all, I’m a married man, and on top o’ that, you’re young enough to be my daughter, not to mention that you’re me best friend’s son’s girl.”
“He’s not here,” said Jasmine, reaching for the drummer again. “Besides, he’s just a boy; I need a man...like you.”
“Or like my father?” asked George, who had come in unnoticed and was leaning in the doorway, arms folded, watching. He pushed away from the doorframe with his shoulder and turned to leave. “I can’t believe you did this,” he said as he walked away. “It was you all along, just like my dad said.”
“George, I can explain!” cried Jasmine, running after him.
“Forget it, Jazz, I’m done with ya,” replied George. “I’m goin’ home. I gotta apologize to my dad. Find yourself another idiot who’ll believe what ya say. That’s not me anymore.”
“You came in my car! How am I supposed to get home?” she asked.
“I’ll take my stuff outta your car. Just get outta my sight. It makes me sick to look at ya.”
He piled his things in the driveway and watched her drive away, then went back to the house.
“Uncle Ritch,” he said, “Could you take me home? I’ve gotta talk to Dad. The same thing happened with him, and I believed her when she told me it was him who came on to her. I’ll tell ya all about it on the way over there.”
Who’s at the gate, dear?” asked Mary.
“It’s Ritchie...he’s got someone with him,” replied John. “Can’t tell who it is. I’ll buzz ‘im in.”
Mary looked out the window. “It’s our George,” she said. “What on earth is going on?”
Ringo helped George unload his things in the driveway.
“Thanks, Uncle Ritch,” said George. “I appreciate it.”
“No problem, lad. Go talk to your dad, don’t keep ‘im waitin’. He must’ve been beside himself over this. I’ll see ya later.”
Ringo got back into his car and beeped his horn; John opened the gate for him and closed it behind him, then went outside to where George was standing beside his things.
“Forget summat, son?” he asked, “Why’d ye bring all this stuff back? An’ where’d yer Uncle Ritchie go?”
George turned to his father and looked at him with eyes full of pain. When he saw the look on his son’s face, John didn’t need to ask any other questions.
“Dad,” said George. His throat worked, his light brown eyes filled with tears. “I’m sorry I didn’t believe you.”
“Whist, lad, no need t’ say anythin’. I see it in yer eyes. C’mere,” John said gently.
His son fell into his arms and John hugged him fiercely. When he released him at last, George picked up his guitars and John took the suitcases.
“I’m sorry I doubted ya, Dad,” said George as they carried his things back into the house. “I got back there just in time to see her puttin’ the moves on Uncle Ritch.”
“Did ye?” asked John. “Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later. Better that ye found out now, instead o’ down th’ road when ye were in even deeper. Ye’ll get over her, son. She’s not worth yer tears. Let’s go put this stuff away. I’ve got a piece I’ve been workin’ on that I want yer opinion about, if ye’ve got th’ time.”
What was that all about?” asked Mary when George went off to his room with his clothes.
“Ol’ Jasmine was tryin’ t’ get Ritch inta bed when he got back over there,” John told her. “He saw th’ whole thing. He’s hurt pretty badly, but he’ll be all right. He’ll write a couple songs about it, maybe get drunk over ‘er a few times, an’ that’ll be that, I’m sure.
“My poor baby,” she said. “Is there anything I can do?”
“Feed him and love him,” replied John, “An’ don’t mention th’ gurrl. Just let him work through it on his own an’ get it outta his system.”
“I knew that girl was trash,” said Mary firmly. “Why do men fall for girls like her, John?”
“Good advertisin’,” he explained. “Advertise a product right, an’ every man’ll want one. A gurrl like her knows how t’ sell herself, it’s as easy as that. Th’ lad just needs t’ learn t’ read th’ fine print, know what sort o’ woman he needs for th’ long haul. Someone who’ll love him no matter what sort o’ an idjit he might be. Someone like his mum, f’rinstance. A good, reliable, serviceable model that’ll furnish him with years o’ happiness an’ satisfaction.”
“How romantic,” Mary said. “I’m overwhelmed. You make me sound like a station wagon.”
“Not you, me gurrl,” he told her, taking her into his arms. “Yer no station wagon, yer a fuckin’ Ferrari.” He kissed her deeply, his hands creeping under her blouse to caress her, and when he finally let her go, she was flushed and breathing hard, her eyes shining feverishly.
“I’ll be sure to run the next one by ya first,” George said from the doorway. “Seems you know how to pick ‘em, Dad. Got anythin’ to eat, Mum?”
“Yes, I’ll get you fixed right up,” she said, smoothing her hair, blushing at the thought that he’d seen what had happened.
“Ye’ve gotta stop lurkin’ like that, lad,” said John with a smile. “Ye might see summat ye don’t wanna know about.”
“I don’t know how I ever coulda thought that you’d--well, you know. You only care about Mum, that’s always been obvious. I’m really sorry, Dad. I just really wanted to believe in her, ya know?”
“Yeah, I understand,” said John. “Just remember not t’ go for all th’ flash an’ glitter next time. Hold out for a real quality woman. When ye find th’ right one, she’ll make anythin’ ye felt for that fuckin’ bitch Jasmine look like less than nothin’. When I met yer mother, I knew she was summat special. C’mon inta th’ sittin’ room an’ I’ll tell ye all about it.”
“I’ll call you when your dinner’s ready, honey,” called Mary after them.
“How long do you suppose it will take before he gets over her, John?” she asked. “I hate to see that look in his eyes. I hate to see him hurting over something I can’t love away like a skinned knee or a broken toy.”
“Just give him time,” replied John. “Another gurrl will come along any day now, an’ that Jasmine’ll be nobbut a distant memory. Maybe th’ next one’ll be th’ one he’s meant t’ be with, maybe not, but he’ll know her when he finds her. Just like I did,” he declared, “when I met his mother.”
He turned towards her and gathered her close, burying his face in her hair. “When he finds someone like th’ gurrl I found, he’s gonna forget his own fuckin’ name,” he whispered. “He’s gonna grab onta that gurrl an’ never let her go.” He trailed kisses from her ear to her neck, then took her mouth with a sigh, his tongue describing hot, lazy circles against hers, his hands moving over her skin, slowly at first, gradually picking up speed as his urgency mounted. When at last he entered her, Mary was more than ready for him, her hunger equal to his own. He moved within her easily, with a strong, regular rhythm, driving her upwards with slow, sensuous grace. After a while, he found it difficult to keep his excitement in check.
“I need ye, gurrl,” he whispered, his breath hot in her ear. She shivered and gripped him tightly, pushing up against him to signal her readiness.
“I’m ready, love,” she told him fervently. “Don’t hold back.”
He doubled his speed and gave her all he had, pounding into her relentlessly, a deep growl escaping his throat as he threw his head back and let himself go completely. Mary cried out as the feeling escalated beyond what she could bear in silence, clutching him tightly, everything inside of her seeming to turn to swirling, raging water. She held him and let the wave of pleasure carry her away from reality, giving as good as she got, driving him up and over the edge with her, her body greedily draining from him all he had to offer, yet wanting more. When at last the gentle throbbing ebbed away and left them panting and tangled together, spent and satisfied, she whispered that she loved him. He kissed her tenderly and lay beside her, holding her securely in his strong, warm arms, taking her with him into a deep and peaceful sleep.
Four months later, Stephen came running into the house late at night. Everyone was asleep except John, who was sitting in the living room watching a movie on television. Stephen’s face was white and he was shaking.”
What th’ fuck’s the matter, son?” asked John, jumping to his feet.
“It’s Emily,” he said in a quiet voice. “Dad, she’s bleeding badly--I think she’s losing the baby. I think we have to get her to the hospital.”
“I’ll call an ambulance,” said John. “You stay with her, and I’ll wake Mary and open th’ gate for them.”
Stephen ran back to the flat attached to the side of the garage. Emily was lying in bed, still and white, her hands protectively covering her belly.
“Stephen,” she whispered, her eyes wide and dark with fright, “It hurts so much--I’m so scared! Is Daddy coming?” Her voice escalated with the pain. “Stephen, I want Mummy and Daddy!”
“Try to stay calm, Em,” he said gently. “Your father’s calling an ambulance and waking your mother. I’m sure they’ll be here in just a minute.”
John and Mary hurried in, their faces pale and frightened looking.
“Baby,” whispered Mary, sitting on the bed beside Emily. She smoothed her hair back and leaned to kiss her. “Stay calm, baby,” she said gently. “I know how you’re feeling. I almost lost your brother, but it turned out all right.”
John knelt beside his daughter’s bed and laid his hand gently on her belly. “Hang on, Emmy,” he told her. “I c’n hear th’ ambulance; they’ll be here in a minute. I love ye, baby. Yer mum an’ me’ll be right with ye...I’ll make sure they let Stevie ride in th’ ambulance with ye, an’ yer mum an’ me’ll be in th’ car right behind ye. Don’t be scared, love.” His voice trembled.
The ambulance came almost to the open door of the apartment, and Emily was loaded onto a gurney and taken out. John went with her and insisted that Stephen be allowed to ride in the ambulance with her. They sped off with the siren blaring and the lights flashing. John came back to find Mary staring at the pool of blood on the bed.
“Oh, John, so much blood,” she whispered. “We have to get to the hospital. We have to be with her.”
“Let’s go,” he replied, averting his eyes to avoid looking at the bed. “George is up and he’s gonna lock up after we’re gone.”
They pulled into the lot at the hospital just as the ambulance pulled away. They ran into the building.
“Where’s Emily Lennon--I mean Emily Bradbury?” asked John, grabbing an orderly by the arm. “Is Nurse Peggy here?”
“Mrs. Bradbury is in the emergency room, and yes, Peggy’s here. Go down that hall, third door on the right. I’ll send Peggy down the minute I can locate her, sir,” said the orderly.
“Good man,” John told him, steering Mary towards the room in question.
Stephen was pacing; there was a curtain drawn around the bed, and the doctor was behind it examining Emily.
“What’re they sayin’, Stevie?” asked John.
“They haven’t told me anything yet,” he replied. “I’m worried sick. Maybe you can get them to tell you something, Dad. You’re a bit more...forceful than I am.”
“That’s putting it mildly,” said Dr. Sullivan, opening the curtain. She extended her hand to John and nodded to Mary.
“So, what’s happenin’?” asked John, looking past the doctor towards Emily. His daughter looked very small and still in the bed.
“It’s hard to tell at this point,” replied Dr. Sullivan. “You got her in here quickly, and that’s in her favor, but I’m having a hard time getting the bleeding to stop. I’ve taken a blood sample to check her hormone levels. I should have the results back from the lab within the hour, and I’ll be able to tell you more once I get that information. I’m going to do an ultrasound now.”
“What’ll that tell ye?” John asked.
Dr. Sullivan leaned closer and spoke softly to him. Stephen was beside Emily, trying to comfort her.
“It will let me know whether there is still a fetal heartbeat,” she told John and Mary.
“Ye mean ye think th’ child might be--”
“In cases like this, that sometimes happens,” the doctor told him. “Has she felt any movement that you’re aware of?”
“She hasn’t mentioned it,” Mary said. “I was thinking it should happen any day now.”
“You’re right,” Dr. Sullivan replied. “But in cases of spontaneous abortion--miscarriage-- the fetus might have died days, or even weeks earlier.”
John winced, thinking of his daughter and how she would feel if it was discovered that she had been carrying a dead child in her body. He shook the thought off and turned to the doctor again.
“Get to it, then,” he told her. “Th’ sooner we know what’s up, the better.”
Dr. Sullivan gave Emily a sedative and closed the curtain around her again. The girl was terrified; she wanted her husband and parents with her and did not like not being able to see them. Dr. Sullivan raised Emily’s gown and applied a lubricant to her belly. She switched on the ultrasound machine and the monitor, turning the screen towards herself. She ran the sensor over the young woman’s abdomen, watching the screen carefully for any sign of movement. After a few moments, she switched the equipment off. She turned when Peggy came into the room and handed her a slip of paper.
“What’s that? Is it th’ results o’ th’ blood test?” asked John. His pulse was hammering as he saw Dr. Sullivan’s face become more solemn still. Her eyes met his and his heart sank. She gave her head a slight shake, her face sympathetic.
“Her HCG levels are very low,” she said quietly, “And I couldn’t find a heartbeat. I’m afraid it’s very bad news, Mr. and Mrs. Lennon.”
“What’s HCG?” asked John.
“Human Chorionic Gonadotropin,” replied the doctor. “It’s a hormone, and if the levels fall like this, it generally means we’re dealing with a baby who is no longer alive.”
Mary caught her breath and put her face against John’s shoulder.
“How’re we gonna tell Emmy summat like that?” he whispered.
“Well,” Dr. Sullivan told him, “She’s young, strong, and healthy, and she has a loving and supportive family. There’s no reason she can’t have another baby...besides, this is often nature’s way of eliminating an imperfect fetus. Chances are pretty good that there was something very wrong with the baby, that it simply wasn’t able to survive because of some major problem.”
“What are you all whispering about?” asked Stephen, coming over to stand beside John. “Emily’s getting really scared because she can’t hear what you’re all saying, and her mother’s crying.”
Mary went to Emily and sat on the edge of her bed, taking her hand and speaking quietly to her as Doctor Sullivan explained the situation to Stephen.
Emily began to sob hysterically and John hurried to kneel by her bedside, his worried eyes searching her face. He felt helpless, and he hated that.
“Don’t cry, love,” he said gently. “Ye’ll be all right, an’ ye c’n try again soon. Ye’ll have another baby.” He touched her cheek and tried to smile at her. “Ye’ll have a dozen babies, if that’s what ye want,” he added.
Emily drew her knees up and sobbed brokenly. “It hurts, Daddy,” she moaned. “Daddy, it hurts so much!”
John got to his feet. “Dr. Sullivan,” he said desperately, “C’n ye give her summat for th’ pain, and t’ calm her?” He hated that there was nothing he could do to ease neither his daughter’s physical pain nor her mental anguish. “She’s beside herself!” he cried. “Can’t ye do anythin’ t’ help her?”
“Calm yourself, Mr. Lennon,” she said firmly. “I’m doing everything I can. Peggy,” she added to the nurse, “Get me 10ccs of Valium for Mrs. Bradbury, if you would.”
Two hours later, it was all over and Emily was sleeping in a private room, her husband and parents sitting quietly beside her bed. John had his arm around his wife, his cheek resting against her hair. Stephen sat on John’s left. The boy looked miserable.
“Don’t let ‘er see ye lookin’ like that, son,” John told Stephen. “Call an’ order some flowers for her, whydon’tcher. She likes yellow roses...call an’ tell Kelly’s t’ send a few dozen over here, an’ tell ‘em t’ charge it t’ me account.” He handed Stephen his cell phone and the boy went outside to make the call.
“Why didn’t you just make the call yourself?” she asked.
“It’ll be good for th’ lad,” he replied. “Get him into th’ fresh air for a minute or two, an’ get his mind runnin’ on another track, like.”
George came into the room and took the seat Stephen had vacated. “Julia and Bobby will be here as soon as they can,” he told his parents. “They’re waiting for Liz to come and watch the children.”
“Did ye see Stevie outside?” asked John.
“Yeah, he’ll be right along, he said to tell ya,” replied George. “I guess she’s pretty upset,” he added, indicating his sleeping sister.
“She’s in bloody pieces,” John said, “But they gave her summat t’ help ‘er sleep. We’ve just been waitin’ for her to wake up. Listen, I’m gonna step outside meself, have a smoke. Come get me if she wakes in th’ next few minutes, willya, son?”
Emily recovered slowly; everyone spoke quietly around her and gave her extra love and attention to help ease her through her mourning, but she rarely smiled anymore.
“Emmy,” John said one afternoon, “C’n I talk with ye a bit? C’mon downstairs with me.”
He sat on the sofa in the studio, and Emily sat beside him. She was listless and silent.
“Yer gonna hafta start thinkin’ about goin’ on with yer life, Emmy,” said her father, putting an arm around her and pulling her close.
“I can’t, Daddy,” she whispered. “I just can’t. Don’t you understand--it’s like part of me has died as well. Everyone keeps telling me that I can always have another baby, but it just wouldn’t be the same. The baby was a girl, did they tell you?”
“Yeah,” he replied quietly. “They told me. I’m sorry, baby. I know it must’ve been hard for you. I know how ye must feel--”
“Daddy,” she interrupted. She pulled away and sat up to face him. “You don’t know how I feel. How could you? You’re a man.” She looked down at her shoes and John saw a tear slip down her cheek and fall to land on her wrist. “You didn’t really know her. I did. I carried her inside of me for five months. She was more real to me than she was to the rest of you,” Emily added. “Including Stephen. She was part of me, and I’ll think of her every day for the rest of my life.” Her face crumpled and she threw herself into her father’s arms, sobbing as though her heart would break. John held her close and cried with her until her sobs trailed off into weary sniffles. Finally, she was resting quietly in his arms. His shirt was wet with her tears and his own.
“I remember when you were a baby,” he said quietly. “When we were told that ye had leukemia, we were sure that we would lose ye. Ye were so sick, it seemed like nothin’ we could ever do was gonna be able t’ help. I remember that feelin’...th’ hopelessness of it all. Then they told us that they might be able t’ save ye with the transplant, an’ I felt a bit better, cos there was summat I could do for ye. I wish there was summat I could do for ye Emmy. I’d give anythin’ t’ be able t’ fix this for ye, but me hands’re tied.”
“Just hold me, Daddy,” she sighed, putting her arms around his neck and her head on his chest. “Hold me and love me.”
“Ye know I’ll love ye forever, Emmy. I’ve been in love with ye since th’ night ye were born inta me own hands. Ye know what ye mean t’ me, gurrl...what ye’ll always mean t’ me.”
She nodded silently and he held her a little closer.
“Is there anything I can bring you, Mother?” asked Stephen.
“No,” she replied. “I can’t believe you would let me languish in this place, Stephen. My own son.”
“Mother, you tried to kill my father-in-law,” Stephen said quietly. “For God’s sake, you tried to kill John Lennon!”
“That’s right,” she replied. “It was for God’s sake. He was directing my hands.”
“Well, He missed. Dad is completely recovered.”
“You call him Dad?” she asked, shocked. “Stephen, that man is not your father.”
“He’s the closest I’ve ever had to one,” Stephen told her. “Mother, he’s really a good man. I wish you had seen fit to give him a chance. He treats me well, and he really loves his family.”
“The Bible says that even Satan himself is capable of transforming himself into an angel of light,” Mrs. Bradbury reminded him. “So it comes as no surprise to me that he has you fooled. I don’t blame you, son. I know he’s got you under his influence. You can get away, though. Leave there and go back to the church, Stephen. It’s not too late.”
“Emily and I lost a baby,” he said, changing the subject. “It would have been a girl.”
“God is punishing you,” his mother insisted. “You got exactly what you deserve.”
“I don’t find anything wrong with you, Emily,” Dr. Sullivan told her. “Perhaps there’s a problem with your husband. There’s a clinic where he can be tested; here’s their card. Make an appointment and let me know what they find out.”
“Triplets? God’s eyelashes, Emmy, when I said ye’d have a dozen babies if ye wanted ‘em, I didn’t mean all at once-- how th’ hell did that happen?” cried John when his daughter told him the news.
“We went to the fertility clinic,” Emily explained. “Stephen had low sperm motility, so they did something called in-vitro fertilization and all three of the embryos took--isn’t that lucky?”
“It’s lucky that we’re rich,” John replied. “This all sounds bloody expensive t’ me. Why is this th’ first I’ve heard of it?”
“Well, Daddy, Stephen wasn’t sure it was safe to mention his...problem in front of you. He thought you might tease him about it,” explained Emily. She sat on her father’s lap and put her arms around his neck. “You won’t though, will you?”
John snorted. “Damn fuckin’ right I will,” he said.”If I had t’ pay God knows how much for all this scientific baby makin’ technology, I think I’ve earned th’ right t’ a little fun.”
“Well, just don’t be too mean to him, then, please. He’s the father of three of your grandchildren,” Emily told him.
“Where is he, anyroad?” asked John. “I haven’t seen him all day, an’ he’s usually about on a Saturday.”
“He went to the hospital to visit his mother,” she replied. “I don’t know why he keeps going, but he does. All she does is tell him how evil you are and that he should go back to that insane church.”
“How long’re they gonna keep her in there, any word on that?” he asked. He placed his hand on Emily’s belly and addressed his next comment to it. “Hello in there, it’s yer granddad,” he said.
“No, I think the plan is pretty much to just keep her in there, since she was found unfit to stand trial,” Emily said. “I just wish Stephen would stop going. She’s so creepy and he’s always depressed for hours after he comes home from one of those visits.”
The buzzer sounded twice, signaling that someone had come through the gate with a key. Emily got up and looked out the window.
“He’s back,” she told her father. “Now, you be nice, Daddy.”
Stephen came in and went into the kitchen to get a drink of water, then came back and sat on the couch beside Emily.
“How was your visit?” she asked.
Stephen gave her a brief hug and a kiss, then sighed wearily. “Same as usual,” he replied. “She wants me to get away from your father’s evil influence and go back to the church. I think you might be right, Em. I really shouldn’t bother going out there every week. The only purpose it serves is to upset us both.”
John decided to leave the remarks he’d been working on concerning Stephen’s fertility problems alone for the moment. The boy really did seem upset.
“She’s right,” he affirmed. “If yer upset every time ye come home from there, it’s probably no good for ye. There’s no change in her condition at all, lad?”
“No, she just keeps telling me that my only chance of survival when the ship comes is to have escaped your influence and rejoined the church. I think she’s forgotten that I never was a member of that weird religion of hers in the first place. She’s in her own little world, Dad, and in her reality, you represent the Devil.” Stephen sighed again and pulled Emily close. “How do you feel, babe?” he asked. “Did you tell Dad the news? I’m guessing no, since he hasn’t mentioned it.”
“Oh, I told him,” she said. “He’s just being nice because I asked him not to say anything--well, anything like what he would normally say.”
“Ye came through when it counted anyroad, Stevie,” John said with a smile, “Even if ye did need a cup an’ a magazine t’ do it.”
Stephen blushed furiously. “I thought you said he was being nice,” he said to Emily. To John, he said, “And it was a video.”
John raised his eyebrows and said, “Was it? Ooooh, nice.”
“Trust me, honey, he is being nice,” Emily told her husband. “I expected a lot worse. He’s letting you off easy.”
“Tell me summat, Emmy,” said John in a thoughtful tone, “How d’ye plan t’ nurse three babies?”
“I’ll have to use a bottle for one, but it will be a different one every time,” she explained. “You can help me, Daddy. It’s been a long time since you’ve done that. George and I were both breastfed, so was Robby, and little Mary. Julia was the only one of us who ever had a bottle. Do you think you can remember how to manage it?”
“Like ridin’ a bike, love. I’m sure I’ll manage just fine, and I can show young Stevie as well,” John said confidently. “Think ye’ll be able t’ tell who is who?”
“That will be easy,” Stephen said. “They all came from seperate eggs, so they won’t be identical.”
“Ah,” said John, “Yer right; I never thought o’ that. Ye could get a mix, then, any combination o’ boys an’ gurrls.”
“We’ve decided to tell the doctor we don’t want to know the sexes of our children,” said Emily. “We’d rather be surprised.”
Stephen and Emily headed back to their flat, and John called after them.
“Triplets, Stevie--good job! Maybe ye should consider becomin’ one o’ them sperm donors; make a career outta it, like!”
Six months later, there was a buzz at the gate. Mary looked out the window.
“Who is it, love?” asked John, looking up from his newspaper.
“It’s a nun,” she replied. “Must be a charity drive. Shall I buzz her in?”
“Sure, go ahead, I’ll write ‘er a check.”
John went to fetch his checkbook. While he was rummaging through the kitchen trying to locate it, Mary let out a loud, panicked scream. John dropped the things he was holding and ran back to the living room.
Mary was on the floor, and the nun was on top of her. There was a flash of steel, and the nun was bringing what looked like a crucifix with a blade extending from it down towards Mary’s throat. With a bellow of wordless rage, John sprang forward and caught the woman’s wrist just before the blade reached his wife’s neck. He twisted the nun’s wrist and both the crucifix and the knife clattered to the floor. He dragged her to her feet and turned her around. To his shock and horror, he found himself looking into the insane eyes of Stephen’s mother.
Elizabeth Bradbury literally growled at John and spat in his face. “Get thee behind me, Satan!” she shrieked. “Get your filthy hands off me!”
“Shurrup, ye fuckin’ batty auld cow,” he muttered, giving her a shake.
Mary was on her feet now, her eyes wide with terror.
“Call th’ police, Mary,” John ordered. “I’ve got th’ fuckin’ bitch.”
Mrs. Bradbury brought her knee up into John’s groin and he groaned in pain and doubled over, his hands going instinctively to the area the woman had injured. The bogus nun made a dive for her knife and Mary kicked it away. It flew under the couch and when the woman scrambled after it, Mary grabbed her arm and twisted it up behind her back, pinning Mrs. Bradbury’s other arm against her side.
“Try anything,” Mary said quietly, her voice trembling, “And I’ll break your bloody arm, I swear I will.”
John dragged himself to his feet and called the police. His face was white and etched with pain. “Better send a padded van,” he told them. “This woman is a fuckin’ lunatic.” John turned the phone off and faced Elizabeth Bradbury again.
“What th’ fuck is wrong with you?” he asked. “Don’t ye see that I’m nobbut a man? I’m not th’ fuckin’ devil, I’ve got no ‘powers o’ evil’, as yer always sayin’. If I was more than just a man, d’ye think ye’d be able t’ drop me by shovin’ yer knee inta me fuckin’ nuts?” He addressed his wife. “I’ll take yer place there, love,” he said. “She won’t be able to do anythin’ t’ me if I’m standin’ behind ‘er. Give ‘er here an’ go cut a length o’ th’ clothesline down. I’ll truss th’ bloody bitch up like a Christmas turkey.”
When Mary returned with the rope, Stephen was behind her, his eyes wide with panic.
“Mother!”he exclaimed. “How the fuck did you get here?”
“Profanity, Stephen?” said his mother sadly. “You’re learning to speak that way to your own mother from this man?”
“Sometimes,” Stephen told her, “the situation warrants it. I didn’t learn it from him, though. I knew all those words long before I ever became part of his family. If you really want to know the truth, what I’ve learned from him has less to do with hate and evil than the things I learned from you. I’ve learned about love and caring from him and from his wife, who has been a better mother to me than you ever were.”
John finished tying Stephen’s mother’s hands securely behind her back and forced her to her knees, binding her ankles to her hands so that she could do nothing but lie helpless upon the floor. The sirens could be heard approaching and John pulled Mary close to his side, placing his other arm around Stephen’s shoulders.
“Sorry this had t’ happen, lad,” he said.
“It’s not your fault, Dad,” Stephen replied. “It’s all hers.”
“He’s not your father!” screamed Stephen’s mother. “Jesus is your father!”
“It’s not, really,” John said to Stephen. “She just lost her mind somewhere along th’ way. She’s not responsible for ‘er actions. She just needs t’ be put in a more secure hospital, that’s all...keep anythin’ like this from happenin’ again.” He buzzed the police in through the gate and asked, “Where’s Emmy?”
“She’s taking a nap,” replied Stephen. “She’s so tired, carrying all those babies. I’m pretty glad she missed all this, though.”
The police came in and collected Stephen’s mother and her knife. John and Mary explained what had happened, and Stephen sat on the piano bench, hearing most of it for the first time.
“Don’t worry, Mr. Lennon. We’ll keep a tight leash on her from here on in. She’s a cagey one. She knocked a nun visitin’ over to the hospital over the head and took her clothes, then walked out easy as you please. She’s headed for a high security institution now. She’ll not escape from where she’s headed.”
After they’d gone, John sat on the sofa, one hand covering his still aching groin.
“I’ll get you an ice pack, baby,” said Mary. “You just stay there. Maybe you should lie back.”
“Yerokay,” John agreed, leaning back and closing his eyes. “Fuckin’ bitch,” he muttered. Remembering Stephen, he added, “Sorry son, but me bleedin’ nuts still fuckin’ ache summat fierce.”
“That’s perfectly fine, Dad,” Stephen told him. “I agree completely. She is a fucking bitch.”
Emily went into labor three weeks later as the family was watching a movie on television in John and Mary’s living room. Bobby, Stephen, John and Mary went in the van with Emily and George followed behind with Julia and the children. Liz was to meet them at the hospital and pick the children up from there, taking them back to her home. John sat beside Emily’s bed with Robby and little Mary on his lap. Mary sat on the edge of the bed and held her hand, whispering reassurances to her. Stephen paced restlessly, and Julia was talking to George, explaining what it was like to give birth.
“It sounds bloody awful, Jule,” he told her with a shudder.
Julia smiled. “It’s not so bad,” she said. “It hurts like nothing you’d ever imagine, but after the baby is out and you can hold it in your arms, it’s so worth it you nearly forget the pain. Look at it this way; if it was so terrible, would there be so many people walking around?”
“I see your point,” he said. “Still, I’m that glad to be a man whenever I think about it.”
The doctor came in and closed the curtain around Emily so that she could examine her.
Liz arrived and took Robby and baby Mary with her.
“Ta, Liz,” John said. “We’ll call ye when it’s over an’ let ye know when we’ll be pickin’ ‘em up.”
Doctor Sullivan opened the curtain and spoke to John, Mary, and Stephen. “The first baby is in the breech position,” she told them. “I’m going to try turning it. If I can’t do it, I may have to take them by Caesarean section.”
“That’s surgery,” said John. “Isn’t it dangerous?”
“Any surgery poses some risks,” she admitted, “But it may be necessary. Let’s cross that bridge when and if we come to it. Right now, I’m going to try it another way.”
Fifteen minutes later, Dr Sullivan emerged from behind the curtain and smiled at them.
“We’re having a baby within the hour,” she said. “I got the first one turned and it’s on the way. She’s doing fine.”
“Mummy!” cried Emily, “I need you! Where’s Stephen?”
Mary resumed her seat on the edge of Emily’s bed, stroking her hair back, reminding her to breathe properly.
“Is it bad, babe?” asked Stephen, sitting on the other side of the bed.
“Pretty bad,” said Emily, “But I think it’s gonna get a lot worse really fast. I feel something happening. Daddy, get Dr. Sullivan back in here! Please hurry!”
“All right, Emily. Now hold on, I’ll let you push in a minute. I’ve almost got it,” said Dr. Sullivan. “All right, honey,” she said a moment later. “Give it all you’ve got, let’s push this baby out and get things really moving.”
Emily bore down, her voice escalating to a scream. John stood behind her, supporting her shoulders. Mary and Stephen encouraged her to push harder, and she gave it everything she had.
“Daddy, push me up!”
John lifted Emily’s shoulders up and held her as she tried to push the baby out. The muscles under his hands were tense and his daughter was trembling uncontrollably.
“Push, Emmy! Ye c’n do it,” he whispered into her ear.
Emily’s scream increased in volume and Dr. Sullivan called out that the baby was a girl.
“Yer on a roll, gurrl! Get on th’ next one!” John shouted encouragingly.
“Why don’t you have this fucking baby!” Emily shrieked, and then the doctor was yelling that this child was a boy.
“I’m sorry, Daddy, I didn’t mean it,” said Emily, then the last baby was coming, and she began to scream again. She was holding Stephen’s hand so hard that his fingers ached.
“Another little boy!” called Dr. Sullivan, “And that’s the last one.”
“Check again, Doc!” laughed John, “Maybe there are a few extra!”
“If there are, Daddy, you are having them!” replied Emily, a weary smile on her face. The nurses brought the three babies over, one wrapped in a pink blanket, the other two in blue. Emily caught her breath when the babies were placed into her arms. “Oh, Mummy and Daddy, look at them. Stephen, look! They’re beautiful!”
“They’re bloody perfect,” whispered John.
“Would you like to hold one, Stephen?” asked Emily softly.
“I’m kinda scared,” he admitted.
“Better get over that, son,” said John, extracting a baby from Emily’s arms and handing him to Stephen. “With this crew, ye’ll need t’ be able t’ juggle ‘em. Besides, ye held Mary when she was new like this. Remember?”
Stephen looked up into John’s face, his eyes shining. “I don’t remember ever feeling anything like this before,” he said softly.
“I hear ye, son,” John told him. “Here,” he said to Emily, “How about givin’ me one for meself.”
Emily let him take her other son, and John kissed the top of the baby’s head and held him close.
“Hello,” he said. “It’s granddad here; I’ve been speakin’ t’ ye all along, this is what I look like.” He smiled into the baby’s unfocused eyes. “Welcome t’ yer family,” he whispered.
More Stories Coming Soon!
Angel Godiva was actually was given that nickname by John Lennon, whom she met in L.A. in 1974 on her 21st birthday. She had yards of hair back then. She lives in Northern Connecticut with her second husband, and has been a Beatles fan since 1964, when she was 11. The high point of her life was meeting and getting to know John (though she never saw him again after he returned to NYC). She also writes poetry, and is currently working with an editor friend on her first novel.
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