Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Any Mother Would Totally Understand

It wasn't long after Charlotte's departure, that most of ladies at the table followed suit. That left only Adair Butler there with Dixie. Immediately Dixie reverted to her 'Motherzila of the Bride' persona. "What was that all about? Imagine Charlotte Beauregard lecturing me. Of all people - everyone has skeletons. Of course my only embarrassing moment was after I had way too many glasses of champagne. I was not responsible for my actions."  Dixie took a sip of her tea. "Everyone knew I had just learned my only daughter got married behind my back." She looked at Adair. "Any mother would totally understand."

Adair had had enough of Dixie. Before Adair said anything ugly, she excused herself. From Dixie's smug countenance, one would see that she assumed that Adair agreed with her. Either that or she acted as if Adair didn't know any better. Dixie followed a few minutes later. On her way out, Dixie noticed that both Blanch and Caroline were polite but not engaging.

Down at the courthouse, Mike and the Sheriff were at Tula's hearing. No surprise, Tula was dramatic as ever. However the Judge had little pity on her. Her attorney argued his best, but the Judge took little pity. He agreed to release her on bail with the stipulation that she would wear an ankle monitor. When Tula protested, the Judge looked over his reading glasses, "Miss Wells, I wouldn't push it if I were you. There is always the women's prison in the next county. I am sure they have room and I would think orange looks good on you."

Finally, reality hit Tula and she realized that she best stop while she was ahead. The Judge dismissed them and called the next case. Leaving the courtroom, her attorney told Tula, "I need to go arrange your bail." He paused as they walked down the courthouse hall. "This will have to be quite creative. Lucky for you, I know a bail bondsman who owes me a favor." He looked at Tula, "But our first stop is the Sheriff's Station so they can take care of the ankle monitor."

"Are you sure that you can't handle that? Of all people, you know I am not going anywhere."

"Of course I can," said her attorney sarcastically.

Tula was thrilled, "I knew you would take care of me."

"How do you like orange?"


"It's your choice Tula."

Reluctantly, Tula accompanied her attorney out of the courthouse to the Sheriff's Station.

Mike and the Sheriff returned to the Station. "You think an ankle bracelet will keep Tula at home?" asked Mike.

"Not a God damn chance," the Sheriff laughed.

Mike shook his head.

Later in the day, Cordelia called Colleen to check on her.

"Cordelia, you were right. Haynes was as sweet and understanding as you said he would be."

"I told you."

"However, Belva was not. She informed me that she told Wells I had died in an accident."

"I called Belva. After, we had a little talk, I think she understands," Cordelia paused. "Oh, she is not thrilled but she understands that, just because the two of you are not on the best terms, Wells should be able to make his own decisions."

"Thank you so much."

"Oh, honey, this family is like herding wet cats, but someone has to do it." Cordelia said matter-of-factly.

They spoke for a few more minutes and then rang off.

That evening, Bob and Parker were having supper with Haynes. When they walked into the house, Parker gave his father a big hug before he even said hello. "How is Colleen? We have been thinking about her but were not sure whether to approach her or not." 

"She would appreciate any support she can get. She's a tenacious woman.  It won't be pretty, but we will get through this."

Bob laughed, as he poured 3 glasses of wine, "All I've got to say is that she is one of the strongest women I have ever met." He took a sip. "Not to mention the best dressed ever."

Haynes laughed, "Well there is that."

"I just remember the afternoon you saw her for the first time." Parker said with a big smile, "You were totally smitten."

"I was." Haynes accepted a glass of wine from Bob and continued, "I still am."

After a glass or 2 of wine, the men moved into the dining room for supper. Haynes had prepared quail and asparagus. There were even hot biscuits. Parker picked up a biscuit. "Now, I'm really concerned about you." He looked over at Haynes. "I was impressed with your new cooking skills but biscuits! Dad, as much as I pride myself as a skilled cook, I have never been able to make decent biscuits."

Bob added, "Damn, these are good," as he buttered one.

Haynes laughed, "I'm not about to take credit for the biscuits, you can thank Hattie"

Bob looked over at Parker, "Now, we have the family secret."

"I'm impressed you thought of getting biscuits from Hattie. I would never have considered that."

"Hey, I know my culinary limits."

They chatted over dinner about the recent weddings, sports, business, etc - anything but Colleen. As soon as dinner was over and the dishes were done, Haynes announced, "Let's go out on the patio. This weather is ideal. Scotch, either of you?"

Both accepted his offer. As soon as the drinks were poured, they walked out onto the patio. It was a beautiful southern night. They sat on the plush sofas and chairs Blanch had used to decorate the terrace.

"Okay Dad, I've had enough to drink. What are your plans with Colleen?"

"As far as I am concerned nothing has changed. I fell in love with the beguiling Colleen, not her past. Of course, it is not something I ever considered - getting to know a transsexual, much less fall in love with one." He laughed quietly and shook his head. "I don't care what people say. Well, I care when they hurt Colleen's feelings. And, unfortunately, I feel like the gathering storm will be pretty rough."

"Jeez, Dad. Remember I put you through more. You and Mama caught Hell when I came out."

Haynes laughed, "Well, let's just say we learned who our friends were."

"Hey, you would have never known me. And, that would truly been a loss," Bob could not help but offer.

Parker suggested that the 4 of them go out Friday night. Bob agreed, "We haven't been to Dot's lately."

Haynes said he and Colleen would meet the 2 of them there Friday evening around 6:30. It wasn't long before Parker and Bob had to leave. Haynes thanked them for their support. Parker's comment was, "Dad, did you think we would do anything else."

Bob gave Haynes a hug, "God, I only hope Parker grows up to be someone like you." 

Parker, shook his head, "Now I know it is time to go home."

Haynes watched the tail lights as they went down the driveway, slowly vanishing into the night. At least he knew he had Parker and Bob's support.

When Mike got home that evening, there was a u-haul truck pulled up next to the house, unloading dozens of plants. Each pot was wrapped in brown paper, so he couldn't tell exactly what they were. He was walking towards the truck when he heard Bunny. "Sweetie, they are here. I am so excited. Come look."

Mike followed her into a garden on the side of the house. "Harrison, loved this garden, but he couldn't bare to work in it after Mary died. So I decided to make it my next project," Bunny said with that innocent excitement Mike was so used to. As they walked through the gates, Mike was surprised to see an additional several dozen plant pots sitting there."

"Aren't they gorgeous? I'm so excited."

"Flowers? This will look nice with something that blooms? It looks like it was a flower garden before."

"Oh no, it was a boxwood garden. And, the ones I bought are 'lush, green, rare boxwood like plants'. Just wait, it will be gorgeous."

Mike and Bunny had to step aside so the men could bring more plants into the garden. "Honey, just one question, where did you get all these from?"

"eBay, of course. I checked HSN first but they didn't sell them. I found a gardener who wanted to sell his entire collection. It was a deal - the price was very reasonable. I just paid for shipping." Bunny stooped down and removed the brown paper from one of the plants." She was silent.

Mike just said,"I'll agree, what you have here are 'rare boxwood like plants'. I've never seen any quite like these."

"See, I told you?"

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