Tony is afraid to lose his virginity to some stranger, so he asks Angelo to "show him the ropes." Angelo reluctantly agrees. Gaining in confidence, Tony makes a pass at Drake. Angelo feels used, hurt, and angry, after discovering Tony's desire for his father. Janet seeks some advice from her former brother-in-law, Johnny.
This book was previously published.
Sandy sat across the table from Tom, puffing on a cigarette.
He wrinkled his nose in distaste. “Are you ever going to give that up?”
“What do you care?” she demanded angrily. “You want out of this marriage. If I get cancer, you won’t have to watch me die.”
“What an ugly thing to say,” Tom muttered. “But then...I’ve seen a side of you that...”
She sighed. “Ya…ya...ya. Whatever, Tom.”
The waitress came over, and they ordered coffee. She left.
They couldn’t meet in town. Too many eyes were on them, and now it wasn’t only the people in the town who were watching. Lately, a few reporters from the United States were spotted hanging around, asking questions about the Newton family. Although they hadn’t directly approached her yet, Sam’s mother called her yesterday to tell her she had been asked to give an interview. How these reporters found out who she was and how she was connected to all this, she’d never know.
But Sandy needed to talk to Tom. So she suggested they meet in a neutral place, forty miles out of town. They met at a highway diner, ironically called The Last Stop. It was half-empty, and no one knew them there.
She wasn’t prepared for how hostile she was feeling…or how wounded Tom looked.
The coffee came. They were alone.
Tom stared into his cup, then sighed. “Why was this necessary?”
“The meeting? I wanted to tell you that I’m going out to L.A. I wasn’t going to tell you, but I decided that you deserved to know.”
He nodded. “Can I ask why?”
“To save our son from that life, that’s why. Don’t you care anymore, or now because he knows you’re not really his father...do you...?”
“How dare you suggest I don’t care?” His blue eyes were brilliant with anger. “I love Tony, and I hope one day he’ll forgive me for lying to him all this time. I hope he remembers the good times we had and that he was always my son...always.” He swallowed and looked away, tears in his eyes. “This could have all been avoided if you had told him years ago. He would have known that I was his stepfather, but...it might have been better. Now he’s confused and bitter, and I would be too.” He fell silent, blinking back the tears.
“Are you finished with your speech?” Sandy murmured, raising the coffee cup to her lips.
He played with his own cup, turning it this way and that.
“Have you started divorce proceedings?” There was a lump in her throat.
“No,” he breathed.
“Can’t we...” She paused. “Maybe when I come back from L.A. with Tony, we can all sit down as a family and work this all out.”
He met her eyes. “But we’re not a family anymore, remember, and what makes you think Tony will come back with you?”
She didn’t reply.
“You’re in love with someone else, Sandy. You’ve always been, and I was just too much of a fool to see it.” His voice cracked with emotion.
“I’m not still in love with—”
“You are. You never stopped loving him, and if he had come after you, you would have left me in a minute and gone with him. But he doesn’t want you, Sandy, he never has.” Tom gave his wife a cruel smile.
Sandy felt like he had turned a knife in her heart. She returned a bitter smile of her own. “I have his son. Drake could never give him that.”
“Drake?” Tom raised an eyebrow. “Are you insane? What are you talking about, Drake?”
“Johnny is in love with his brother. That’s why our marriage failed, and that’s why I don’t want Tony with him. He will corrupt him, destroy his morals...everything I’ve taught him.”
“In love with...have you lost your mind?” Tom laughed. “You truly are mad.”
“You don’t have to believe me.” She withdrew another cigarette from her package and lit it. “I know it sounds insane. It sounds insane because it is insane, but I don’t really care if you believe it or not. I just want you to know that I am going to go to L.A. and bring back our son. I want you to check on the house when I’m gone, so we don’t get anything vandalized or stolen. If you do want to sell the house later on...” She stopped.
“We can discuss all that later.” His voice was hard. “Maybe you’ll want to...” he stopped.
He couldn’t believe that his marriage was coming to an end. He also couldn’t believe his son was gone, and that he missed him so much it hurt. All the years spent with this woman were a lie. She had held him in her arms, made passionate love to him, whispered his name in the dark, and all that time she was still in love with her ex-husband, the father of her child.
He stood up. He couldn’t bear to look at her right now. He loved her still. “I’ll watch the house. I’ll move back in while you’re gone. When are you leaving?”
“I wanted to go at Christmas, but I booked too late.” She crushed out her cigarette. “I’m going in mid-January instead. I don’t know for how long. I’m hoping to go and come back right away with Tony.”
“Okay, do what you want. Call and remind me a few days in advance when you’re leaving. I’ve got to go now. I have a patient coming in this evening.”