|Subject: Chapter 238 - Part 1 (16 and above)
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Date Posted: Wednesday, April 19, 06:58:41am
In reply to:
's message, "Dreams in the Dark (chapters 221--?)" on Monday, February 13, 07:24:07am
Extra warning: There's some mild bad language here. I'll rate it 16 and above, just to be safe.
Dreams in the Dark (238/?)
by Katherine Gilbert
The night, for all its promise, was not proving to be particularly friendly. This was not only true for the pair who currently mourned in their hotel but also for a kind mother who worried for her son; Elena's eyes moved into the boy, as he dutifully helped her clean the living room. But there was only so long that she could allow him to suffer alone.
She was watching him closely now, had been for at least an hour--their guests long gone. She had even sent Chuck away to bed, claiming that he seemed quite tired, hoping to get a chance to speak with Adam alone--her typical habit of seeing everything neatly put away before bedtime helping her now; as she always said, the work just piled up further, otherwise. With four children and a husband, it was impossible to just let things go. If you did, you had a mountain of dirt to live in--and nowhere else to go.
Still, these habits were helping her further currently, giving her a chance to be alone with her son. It had been too long since they had tried to speak about the whole situation which plagued him, her original intention of allowing him to settle his doubts alone obviously ineffective. Now, as he brought yet another couple of plates to her at the sink, his look was such a mixture of anger and pain that it made her hurt almost physically to see him; her sigh was quiet. There was no way she could let this go on.
It wasn't easy to start, however, had been months that she had let the subject slide, hoping that her son was coming to terms with the truth of his origins in his own way--but that clearly wasn't the case. She stopped him with her voice, her hands wiping off a dish through the suds, as he was about to escape through the door. "Would you like to tell me what you're thinking?" The only way to get him to talk would be the most straightforward one possible.
The request stopped him dead, his shoulders drooping, as he stood there in silence. If he had hoped to get away quietly, to live with his own thoughts tonight, it was clear that wish had just died. Whatever the softness of her voice, he was stuck. He knew her too well to think it was anything but a tender demand.
He didn't blame his mother for this, had rarely ever felt anything but love for her; even in his most childish moments of rage or need, that had always been true. But still his anger railed--its target the man who had, terribly, been involved in his conception; his shoulders tensed again at the thought. It was impossible to think about it and not want to scream.
He couldn't do this now, of course, wouldn't dream of knowingly waking his younger siblings; he was too long-established in his role as big brother to want to do that, whatever his occasional annoyance with their chatter. Still, he *would* have to answer, would be forced to talk it out by this woman who knew him far too well; his sigh went deep. He could only dream that there was some way to keep it to himself.
There wasn't, of course, his hand braced on the doorframe, as she finished the last few dishes behind him, wiping them off to place in the rack to dry. Still, his first words weren't exactly polite, his anger hard to control--which was *exactly* the reason why he hadn't discussed it with her before. "Why did you let him do that to you, Mother?" He stood there for a second, simmering quietly. "Why would you ever dream of letting that man touch you?"
Lord. Her head dropped at the question, at the quiet accusation in his voice; even the proper name he gave her was worrying, distancing. Still, this needed to be faced, couldn't be put off any longer; she wiped off her hands, moving to him, touching his shoulder softly, before pointing toward his bedroom. "Go." This just wasn't a conversation they could have here.
He followed her order, understanding this point as well--not wishing for one of his siblings to overhear; they were far too young to understand. The truth of his conception had hit him hard enough at the age of 16. Now 17, he didn't want to imagine how any of his--mostly single-digit-aged--siblings would take it yet.
A few moments later, they were in his room, the door closed to prevent any accidental listeners. According to their usual pattern for such serious conversations, he was sitting on his bed, this time staring moodily at the floor, while she watched him, propping herself back against a wall. It took her a moment to try to answer his accusation--the attempt not much of one, once it came. "What will make you happy, Adam? Do you want to know my exact emotions? Do you want me to say that it was all his fault?" Her eyes gazed into him deeply, once he focused on her again. "Just what are hoping to discover?"
It took him a second to ponder this, his look falling away--and what he discovered was that he wasn't certain himself. She had already told him the very basics. He knew that she had somehow wanted the man, had been young enough to follow through on those instincts without much deeper thought; it was a hard concept for a young man to have of a mother he loved, but he had already been told the truth. Still, this didn't satisfy him, the simple facts not enough--his gaze digging into her. "*Why* did you want him?" The look grew slightly more fierce. "Just what in the Hell makes him so damn desirable, anyway?"
This was the mystery he just couldn't wrap his mind around, the one he could imagine no good answer to. But his mother's eyes reprimanded him for his language, before she would answer, making his gaze drop, his word a soft grunt. "Sorry." It wasn't like he wanted to offend her--but it was damn difficult not to be annoyed.
She saw this, knew how conflicted and hurt he must be--didn't push him any further, settling on his question. But it was a hard one to answer--especially to her son. Her every original desire for the actor would sound like girl talk, indecipherable to him; she would have laughed, had the situation been less painful. And he was in no mood to have to listen to any gushing females now.
She understood this fact, tried to find any way to explain it--finally settling on the most basic truths. "He's intelligent." Fiercely so--his gaze almost disconcerting in how deeply it could probe a person. "He can be quite kind, too--genuinely so," she added, as he looked up to her, annoyed. She had to plunge right into the part he wanted to hear the least. "But I suppose what makes women want him the most, myself included, in those days, is his passion." Adam looked sickened, turning away--but the words went on. "If he chooses you, and you agree, he does everything in his power to share all of that with you." For awhile.
This last part went unspoken, but it might as well have been screamed, Adam certainly hearing it--gaze blazing back to her, willfully misinterpreting her words. "So, he's Machiavellian and manipulative and lustful." The look nearly contained some hate. "Why would any woman want to be around that for long?"
Lord. Elena had to close her eyes for a moment, overwhelmed in sadness at his misunderstanding of the man. While she didn't really blame the boy for his anger, or his suspicion, it was still a difficult moment; her sigh was long, as she found his eyes once more. If only any of this could be explained.
This wasn't really possible, of course, no child on earth wanting to hear about the sexiness--and sexual prowess--of their parents in any sort of depth. It took her a second, but she did move over to the bed, sitting beside him. This was going to be a very long conversation, if she hoped to make him see.
There were quite a few minutes of silence, before she went on, uncertain how to explain. Finally, the quiet words emerged. "I know you don't want to understand." There was a shrug. "I can't say I blame you, given how you discovered the truth." Her look came back to him, very deep now. "But the fact is that he draws women to him the same way that you do--with his passion and intelligence. He's a lot like you, really." His head turned away, the rage clearly rising, as her voice grew softer. "But I suppose that's hard for you to see."
It was, certainly--the night only becoming more infuriating, Adam's hands clenching hard into the bed. To think of himself in terms of that man was an insult--whatever good intentions his mother might have; his fists tightened further. The very thought made him want to hit something--not her, certainly, probably not himself, but something, and hard; he took a very deep breath, bracing himself, as he let the angry sensation go as much as possible, loosening his fingers from the mattress. But the thought that this reaction might be the very mirror of the bastard who had helped create him did nothing for his mood.
She could see this, feared for him, uncertain what else to say. She let him calm for another few, long moments--sensing so much of his father in him, for better and worse--before she tried to speak. She could only hope her words wouldn't enrage him too much--as unlikely as that now seemed.
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