Time to face the music.
“Your family?” he asked again. I nodded…again.
“Just so they know who you are. So that if they ask who the father is, I could say ‘you met him remember? I brought him home once.” I said softly as he pondered for a moment but nodded.
“Fine. No problem. Just say when and we’ll go.” he shrugged. I smiled as I turned around and faced opposite of him.
“When.” I smiled…
“You have dinner with your family once a week?” he scoffed as I smiled but nodded.
“It’s like a tradition.” I shrugged. “Why? Don’t you?” I asked and he shook his head.
“No. I mean only like on holidays.” he replied.
“That’s it?” I laughed.
“Well you don’t know my parents, that’s a lot.” he replied and I giggled to myself. His hat hanging on as we drove on the freeway. My family lived in Nevada for some strange reason. But it wasn’t by the strip as you would assume. I moved to California when I was 18 to go to photography school, I was never more pleased with myself. My mom had this bright idea to explore her ‘desert’ side so she moved a couple months after I left Chris in Vegas. Go fucking figure…
“So how we gonna do this?” he said completely enthralled.
“Just…act like we’ve been dating for a couple months. But PLEASE don’t mention I picked you up at Club Rio in Vegas.” I sighed.
“I thought I picked you up.” he smirked as I blushed and looked back at the mountains across the way.
“So…we’ve been dating for a couple months…who are you?” he narrowed his eyes as I smiled.
“Wow…let’s see. I’m a camera girl in the mall…that’s how I pay the bills. But in real life I am a photographer, and writing a book about the desert…one day. I have 4 brothers. The oldest one is Adrian, then Carlos, then Liam, Miguel, and then me. I’m the baby. But mess with me, I can take care of myself.” I smiled as I pulled off the freeway and onto the road that led me to my parent’s house. I had nervous bitch written all over my face…
“Okay, so Tio Robert is my favorite uncle who’s married to Tia Rosalina. She makes all tamales and likes compliments. But you have to talk to her on the left side, because she is STONE deaf on the right side. What else….oh yeah, never say Jesus Christ in front of my mother. My sister in law Anna and my brother Adrian have a daughter who’s middle name is named after me. Any questions?” I asked finalizing the rules to Chris.
“Yeah…what’s your last name?” he smiled.
“Williams. Yours?” I smiled.
“Right. Chris Blose.” I said out loud.
“Lynai Williams.” he said back to me as I laughed and he took my hand.
“Nice to meet you.” he whispered as I half smiled back.
“You too.” I whispered.
“Hey Anna watch the damn dog! Lynai! There you are, I was just going to get some ice, everyone‘s around back.…who’s this? New boyfriend?” my brother Adrian appeared and eyed Chris as I smiled nervously.
“Chris, this is my nosy brother Adrian. Adrian, Chris.” I said pointing my hand.
“Nice to meet you.” Chris said softly to Adrian who reluctantly looked a him.
“Does dad know about him?” he asked me.
“Nope.” I frowned.
“And I wasn’t gonna come tonight.” he smirked as he walked away and I slapped the back of his head with a glare.
“Good luck.” he sang as he disappeared.
“So your father? Is he a big man?”
I smiled as I took his hand and led him to the backyard where embarrassingly Spanish music was playing. I sighed as my whole family was somehow there. Cousins galore, aunts and uncles. Streamers taped across the trees, food coming in all kinds of directions.
“This is your family?” he gasped at the many people. I nodded.
“I guess some people couldn’t make it.” I shrugged and that’s when everything stopped. The talking, the guitars, everyone looked at us and I froze.
“Tough crowd.” Chris whispered nervously.
“What is wrong with everyone? Can’t I bring a guy to dinner?” I asked carefully as the silence continued. I never felt so small.
“Hello Lynai.” someone whispered and I gulped when Alejandro walked up to me. My ex boyfriend…who wanted to marry me…
“Hi Alex.” I whispered.
“How are you?” he asked me in Spanish.
“Fine…” I replied softly. “It’s been so long since you came to one of these…I thought we’d never be friends again.” I added.
“That’s where we started isn’t it?” he asked eyeing Chris. I looked down.
“Chris, this is Alex. He’s a very good friend of the family. We grew up together.” I said softly.
“Hey Alex, I’m Luke Skywalker. How are ya?” Chris attempted to joke and I sighed inside as no one looked pleased. Mexicans quite don’t understand Stars Wars sometimes…face? Meet palm please. Alex just looked at him.
“ Sorry, I’m sure you get that a lot.” Chris said awkwardly viewing Alex’s officer uniform. I hinted at Chris to just stop and looked back at Alex.
“Is this is really your boyfriend?” he asked in Spanish once more as I glared.
“Yes Alex, he is my boyfriend. Do you have a problem with that?” I glared. He shook his head and scoffed.
“Pleasure to meet you Chris. You’re a lucky man. There’s nobody like Lynai. Nobody.” he said sarcastically as I looked away and sighed.
“What happened to the music? Musica! Musica!” Alex said clapping his hands to my family who looked on as if a fight would break out any minute. The music continued as he walked away.
“Seems like a nice guy…He’s going to kill me isn’t he?” Chris asked me as I shook my head.
“He’s not the one you should be worried about. Come on.” I said grabbing his hand and walking inside the kitchen to where my mom and dad were in the kitchen. I braced myself.
“Hi mama.” I said softly and she cried out in joy as she hugged me and next came my dad.
“My beautiful baby.” he cooed as I rolled my eyes secretly. He was adorably cheesy sometimes…
“Who’s this?” he motioned to Chris who stood in the doorway nervously.
“Dad, mom this is Chris…Blose.” I said remembering his name.
“Mr. Williams, Mrs. Williams. It’s such a pleasure to finally meet you. Lynai talks about you all the time.” he smiled.
“Well that’s funny, cause she’s never mentioned a word about you.” my father retorted.
“Rainier behave yourself.” my mother warned. My father threw his hands up.
“I can’t keep up with her anymore! One minute she’s engaged, next she brings home a guy with a motorcross shirt.” he said pointing at Chris.
“I was not engaged!” I shouted softly in defense. “I was not. Engaged.” I clarified to Chris once more.
“Well actually sir, that’s one thing I admire most about your daughter. Lynai is full of surprises.” he said looking at me and I laughed awkwardly as my father glared at him.
“C’mon Chris, I think we’ll be safer in the other room.” my mom took Chris’ hand and walked him out of the kitchen where it was just me and my father…I might as well let the paramedics know it’s not necessary to bring a body bag…
“You’ll have to excuse my husband. I often think he wishes Lynai was still six years old.” I smiled.
“When you become a father, you’ll know what I mean.” I laughed softly as he seemed to tense. I raised an eyebrow but let it go.
“Wow.” he said quickly before motioning to the pictures on the wall.
“Those are amazing.” he said softly.
“Those are Lynai’s…she hasn’t shown you her work?” I asked confused. He stuttered.
“Yes of course. But it’s just that every time I see them, I feel like I’m seeing them for the first time.” he said nodding.
“Ah…that’s must be the house in Mexico.” he said pointing to the picture of my grandma’s hacienda.
“Yes. That’s Lynai’s great grandmother.” I said pointing the woman in the picture. “Both of them have the same lost look in their eyes…like a free spirit.” I smiled but frowned when I heard arguing in the kitchen.
“I think that runs in the family.” he smiled nervously as I nodded.
I didn’t need mother’s intuition to know that something wasn’t quite right here…
I smiled as I helped collect dirty dishes and watched Chris as my aunt Carmen fixed the candles next to him.
“These tamales are truly amazing. You can’t get them anywhere else!” he shouted to her as she look confused.
“Why is he yelling at me?” she asked in Spanish to Rosemary who smiled.
“He thinks your Rosalina.” she replied as Carmen nodded.
“Hah?” she teased to Chris and laughed as she walked away while he look confused. I smiled as I felt bad for him.
“That’s Rosalina.” I mouthed to the woman in front of me as I nodded embarrassed. I shook my head as I brought the dishes in and washed them off. I felt sick again. My father wouldn’t speak to me like I predicted. I sighed and tried not to cry at the thought as I walked back out. I saw Chris walking to Anna who was rocking baby Elisia (Ah-Lissi-ah.) in her arms.
“She’s beautiful.” he smiled softly as Anna looked up at him.
“Gracias.” she replied. “Do you mind holding her while I fix myself a plate?” she asked as she held up Elisia as Chris shook his head.
“Oh I don’t I think I should, I’m not really qualified to do so.” he replied nervously but stuttered as Anna had already put her in his arms.
“Just hold her like that, be careful of her head.” she smiled.
“Why, is it going to fall off?” he asked as she shook her head.
“You’ll do fine.” she said patting his shoulder as she walked away to the food table. He awkwardly held the baby is his arms, and as he rocked her I felt myself smiling, and a happy feeling going through my stomach. I didn’t feel so sick anymore. He looked at me and smiled softly as he kissed her head and I smiled back at him before grabbing some more dishes. This was oh so confusing…
“How can so much stuff come out of something so small?” he asked me as he was in the kitchen wiping spit up off his shirt. I frowned in sympathy.
“Thank you for coming with me.” I said quietly.
“Are you kidding me? They’re amazing.” he said pointing outside.
“I had no idea families actually speak to each other at dinner time.” he sighed as I smiled.
“I’m glad they got to meet you.” I said nodding. We both stood there for a minute.
“They’re going to hate me aren’t they?” he whispered. I looked up at him and shook my head.
“No. I won’t let them.” I whispered back before he looked at me, disbelief still in his eyes. I half smiled before walking to a table and blowing out the candles. I knew deep in my heart where this was heading and I hated to admit it but it was the right thing to do. I didn’t notice when he seemed to walk closer until I felt his presence right behind me. I turned around and looked at him as I smiled. He smiled back before leaned in and kissed me as I immediately wrapped my arms around his shoulders as if he was a magnet. I wanted to feel him again despite my best intentions. I kissed his warm lips before pulling back when I realized what I had done. I let go of him as I sighed and looked down. It didn’t feel so right anymore…
“Don’t. You‘ll just make it worse.” I cut him off as we drove back to the dam where his car was parked. My dad officially hated me. I smiled softly as I knew it was best if we just kept things short and simple. They knew who he was now. There was nothing more to say or do.
“At least let me give you my number incase you need to reach me.” he offered and I shook my head.
“No…it’s better this way you know? No complications.” I assured him as he nodded. We pulled into the parking lot and we both sighed as he looked at me.
“Well…take care of yourself.” he said softly and I nodded.
“I will.” I smiled as he got out of my car slowly. “Hey.” I said to him. “You too.” he nodded as he slowly walked to his car and I sighed as I pulled out of the space. He knew, my parents knew about him, I did what I intended to do. My mission was complete. I smiled sadly as I started to go drive when Chris put himself in front of my car. I gasped as I pushed on the brakes.
“What are you doing?” I asked him as I looked at him through the window of my convertible run down jeep. “Get out of the way.” I urged. I sighed when he didn’t move. I sat up on the seat.
“Chris don’t do this. There’s nothing more to say.” I whispered.
“Just hold on. There might be.” he retorted.
“This afternoon, I couldn’t decided between the Texas toast or tuna melt, and my life made sense ya know? Now I know exactly what I want, and nothing in my life makes sense.” he said softly as I looked at him confused.
“This afternoon I was fine. That was me then. And now, I’m with you, and I don’t know what happened. Somewhere between the tuna melt and your aunt’s tamales. I mean, I was actually concerned that I already met the woman of my dreams at the cleaners or something, but I was just too busy to notice. But then you show up, and everything’s suddenly unbalanced. And I realize that’s not true. Because you’re the one. You’re everything I never knew and want…” he said as I looked down.
“I don’t even know what that means.” he put up his hands as I sighed and looked at him. I rubbed my head and closed my eyes.
“Chris.” I sighed.
“No I’m serious. I’ve never been more serious in my life, not even when my first family dog died.” he replied. I just looked at him as he came closer.
“I think we should get married. Right now.” My jaw just dropped…
A/N: Hope you liked. I stayed up a little extra late cause I wanted to just write this already. If you’re interested in seeing the movie, that this story is based on, I’ll give you it. Sadly, the family drama is indeed actually based on my family. I’m Mexican and my family doesn’t not open up their hearts to anyone exactly. It’s real tough, but what can you do? (: Please rate and review?