Kelly is very upset about the photos. Monica and Donna have a tense conversation.
Kara frowned, "The doctor she's working for."
Bob pulled Kara’s car into the long-term parking lot, "You’re upset about it."
"I don't know what to think." Kara admitted as Bob found a suitable spot to park.
Bob didn't know what to think either. He could just imagine Gerard's reaction if he knew. He turned off the engine and sat back and faced Kara. "Look, she works for the guy. It’s probably nothing."
"True." Kara said, "But I know how vulnerable Mom is right now." She looked over at Bob, "I know she still loves Gerard. I just don't want her to make the mistake of trying to get over him with someone else."
He looked at her closely, "Kara, tell me truthfully. What do you think would be the best thing for Monica?"
Kara thought a moment. "If I was sure Gerard really still loved her I would want them to be together. I know she loves him."
"And he loves her." Bob said. "I'm sure of that."
He was surprised by Kara's answer. "Then he needs to get his ass home and talk to her. Those two kinda deserve each other. Shit, I'd like to smack them both up side the head."
Bob burst out laughing, "God, you're cute when you're angry"
Kelly was devastated. It was clear to her now that Gerard wouldn’t be coming home to repair his relationship with her mom. That must be what he wanted to talk to her about. He was going to tell her the truth. She logged off the computer and walked over to Elle.
“Come on Bug. Let’s go home.”
Elle frowned, “Mes don’t wanna.”
“Come on.” Kelly snapped. “We have to go.” She just wanted to go home and think things through. She had no idea how she would tell her Mom about the picture.
“No.” Elle whined. “Don’t wanna. Mes likes it hewa.”
Kelly fell into the small chair next to her. “Please Bug. I don’t feel good. I wanna go home.”
Elle’s attitude suddenly changed, “Yous sick?” She reached out and touched Kelly’s face. “Mes don’t want Kwee to be sick.”
Kelly tried to hide her tears, “I just need to go home.” She whispered.
“Otay.” Elle agreed standing up.
The girls left the library holding hands. Elle kept stealing glances at Kelly. She didn’t want her to be sick. That’s what her mamma always was and it made her feel very sad.
An hour before the office closed Monica’s car was returned by the mechanic Paul had suggested. Monica thanked the man and paid the invoice thinking how reasonable it seemed.
“Oh damn.” Paul said stopping in the doorway to the room where Monica was processing files. “I just saw Dean leave. That must mean your car’s been repaired.”
Monica looked up from the computer. “He just left.” She frowned, “Why, ‘oh damn’?”
Paul smiled, “You have your car back now you don’t need a ride.”
Monica grinned, “Nope. My car’s all fixed.”
Paul walked into the room, “So I was wondering if you’d like to go out to dinner tomorrow night?” As soon as he saw the look on her face he quickly added, “You know just two friends enjoying a meal together.”
Monica sighed, “Gerard should be getting home tomorrow night. I think he’ll want to talk to me about Elle.”
“Elle? You mean your youngest daughter?”
Pushing away from the computer desk Monica turned to face him. “Elle is actually Gerard’s daughter from a previous relationship. Her mother died but she had made me Elle’s legal guardian. She had assumed Gee and I would be getting married so it was the easiest way to handle things.”
“Oh, I’m sorry to hear about her death.” Paul said leaning against the desk.
It was hard for Monica to think about Liv. The memories were still too fresh. “So anyway, I’m sure he’ll want to discuss Elle.”
Paul wanted to know more but wasn’t sure how much he could ask without upsetting Monica. “He’s going to take the child and raise her?” He asked softly.
Monica didn’t respond at first. She took a deep breath, “I’m not sure what he’s going to do. I love Elle like she’s my own. I promised her mother I would care for her.” She added softly, “But she is his daughter.”
“I’m sorry. That’s a painful situation.” He pushed off the desk and stood. “Remember my offer still stands, I’m a good listener. Anytime you need someone to talk to remember me.” He leaned down and wrote on a post-it on the desk. “This is my cell number.” He smiled looking directly into Monica’s eyes, “Use it, okay?”
Monica was touched by his concern. “Thanks, Paul.”
As Gerard left the stage he suddenly felt weak. In his mind he just kept thinking, it’s over. Now I can go home. Another voice in his head taunted him.’ If you have a home. You threw it all away.’ He didn’t stop when he heard Ray call out to him. He just wanted to get back to the hotel.
“Gerard.” Ray shouted this time. “Stop.”
Slowly Gerard turned and waited for him to catch up. “Man, we need to do the encore. This is the last date. We need to thank the crew.”
“Fuck.” Gerard whispered. He knew Ray was right but that didn’t change the fact that he just didn’t want to return to the stage. Reluctantly he nodded and followed Ray.
“Sunshine, talk to me.” Luke said softly. “Tell me what’s going on.” He reached over and touched her hand. “Please.”
“She sick.” Elle said as she leaned over and hugged Kelly tightly. “Mes donts wants her to bes sick.”
Kelly just wished they would leave her alone. She needed to think. She had hoped that when she and Elle had gotten back to the apartment that Elle would take a nap. But instead Luke had been waiting for them and Elle had refused to lay down. Now her mom would be home soon and she still didn’t know what she was going to say to her.
“Bug, could you get me a soda out of the fridge?” Luke asked. He knew it would only get her out of the living room for a minute but he needed to talk to Kelly alone.
“Otay.” Elle gave Kelly one more big hug then slid off the sofa.
As soon as she was out of the room Luke spoke, “Sunshine you are scaring the fuck out of me. Talk to me please.”
Tears filled Kelly’s eyes. “I saw a recent picture of Gerard. He’s with the fucking Eliza again.” The anger in her voice shocked Luke.
“Are you sure?” He whispered.
Kelly nodded. “It was taken a few days ago. They’re holding hands.” She stopped when Elle came back into the room holding a can of soda.
Luke sat back and let the information sink in. He was so sure Gerard intended to come home and try to make things right. He’d promised he wouldn’t hurt Sunshine. Anger filled the young boy. With all his heart he wished he could do something to help her.
Elle handed Luke the soda then climbed back on the sofa next to Kelly. She didn’t speak she just snuggled up closer. She was confused and upset.
“He’s not coming back ever.” Kelly whispered.
Monica walked in and kicked off her shoes. She moved into the kitchen and was surprised to see there was no dinner. Kelly had told her this morning she would take care of the meal. She tried not to be annoyed but she was tired and hungry. “Kelly.” She called out.
Kelly appeared in the doorway.
“I thought you were going to make dinner?” She was going to say more but she saw the look on Kelly’s face. “What’s wrong? Where’s Elle?”
“Luke took her to the park.” Kelly answered.
Kelly looked down. “So I could talk to you alone.”
At once Monica crossed the room to stand before her. “Kelly tell me what’s going on?”
When she looked up her eyes were full of tears. “I was on the computer at the library today and I saw a picture of Gerard.”
Monica waited for her to continue.
“He was with Eliza.” She whispered.
Monica reached out and pulled Kelly to her. “I know, Honey.”
“You know?” Kelly pulled out of her embrace.
“He asked Alicia to warn me about the photos. He told her that Eliza had showed up in Europe after she’d heard he and I had broken up.”
“So he’s really with her?” Kelly cried.
“He told Alicia that he’s not with her.”
“But they are holding hands in the picture.”
The words caused Monica to inhale sharply. “All I know is what he told Alicia.” Monica finally said. Was Gerard lying? she wondered.
“This is all so messed up.” Kelly said angrily. “I hate him.”
Monica moved to hug her again. “No you don’t.” she whispered.
The clock had just chimed eleven times when Monica answered Donna’s call. “Hi Donna. How are you?”
Donna got right to the point. “Monica, I came by the office today to see you but you were at lunch.”
“Oh, I’m sorry I missed you.” Monica answered.
“The girl behind the desk told me where to find you.” Her tone was flat.
“That was Gilly, Paul’s daughter.” Monica explained.
“Dr. Klein. The doctor I’m working for.”
Donna sighed, “Does he take all his new employees to lunch?”
Monica was surprised to hear anger in Donna’s voice. “He was just being nice.”
“He looked like he was being very nice.” Sarcasm dripped from her words.
“You saw us?” Monica asked.
“Yeah, I saw you. Monica what are you thinking? Gerard will be home tomorrow night.”
Monica tried not to let her own anger speak but it was impossible. “I know that. However I don’t understand what that has to do with me having lunch with a friend.”
“He seems like a close friend.” Donna responded quickly.
Monica sighed, “Paul understands I’m at a bad place in my life right now.”
“A bad place?”
“Yeah, a bad place because of your son.” Monica shot back. “It’s true and you know it.”
“Gerard wants to come home and repair this.” Donna answered. “You have to know that.”
“Do I have to know that?’ Monica’s voice rose. “I don’t know anything anymore. What I do know is that your son broke up with me. What I do know is that Kelly was very hurt today when she saw photos of him with Eliza.”
Donna sighed, “Alicia told me about that. I know she told you that Gerard explained about them.”
“Yeah, he said that there might be photos of them together. However he didn’t explain that there would be photos of them holding hands.”
Donna was shocked still she said, “I’m sure it’s not what it looks like.”
“Whatever.” Monica was just too tired to argue anymore.
“Monica, today when I saw you with that doctor. Well if anyone had taken a photo it would have looked like you were a couple. I saw how he was looking at you. Please tell me you aren’t thinking about getting involved with him.”
“I work for Paul. He’s a good friend.” Monica said tiredly.
“He’ll be home tomorrow night.” Donna repeated.
Monica closed her eyes, “Yeah, I know.” It hurt to realize she dreaded his homecoming. In her heart she was afraid it would signal the true end for them. He would take Elle and move on with his life.
“Just wait.” Donna whispered.
“I’m sorry, Donna.” Monica’s voice conveyed the pain she was feeling, “But I really believe it’s too late.”
Authors Note - Hey guys....Gonna take a small break. New chapter on Monday. Love to you all - SanDee XOXO