Mother Issues (October 2019, Week 3, Day 2)
“Honestly, I don’t want to.” Hastings looked at the dripping tree outside her window and scribbled ‘fair weather friend’ while listening to the cajoling from her mother on the other end of the line. “Look,” she interrupted. “I need to go. I’ll see you on Sunday.” Ending the call felt almost decadent.
It wasn’t that Hastings didn’t enjoy spending time with Marcus sometimes. Her friends liked him and he was easy enough to talk to after all the years they’d spent circling in the same orbit. Easy wasn’t what Hastings was looking for, not that she was looking for anything at all. They’d also admittedly had a run of encounters that would, without their history, have made great fodder for someone’s romantic comedy.
The history was there, though, as was the encouragement from her mother. Combined, those were enough to make Marcus the subject of appointment after appointment. Between him and her mother, she’d probably buy her therapist a boat or a summer home at this rate. Hastings wanted to keep her distance, and saying no to her mother was the first step.
The old clock on the wall made a feeble attempt at announcing the hour, its novelty bird sounds having had better days. Everything else in the room was sharp and new. The office had come furnished with everything she could need, including a modern clock, all in varying shades of gray. The only thing she’d brought in herself, the only thing with color or character, was the clock.
Hastings looked at her watch to make sure the clock wasn’t wrong and smiled. She had plenty to celebrate at her therapy session and leaving work early made it that much better. She could have left right then, on time. She could have closed her laptop as soon as the clock sounded. Instead, she looked and saw “About this weekend” and “Gains, Marcus” were sitting at the top of her inbox, bold and italicized.
“Seriously?” Hastings used more force than was necessary to open the email.
Hey there –
I know your mom got involved – sorry. I didn’t ask her to, I promise. It’s not that big of a deal. I’ll go solo and will catch you later.
The reply window seemed to open itself, and her words filled the screen before she realized what she was doing.
Hi Marcus –
I’m sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner – things have been crazy lately. I can go if we can wait to leave until 7. Is that cool? I also need to know what to wear so I don’t embarrass you (or myself). Text me the details?
Hastings did hesitate for a moment over the send button even though she knew the deed was done. In a few short moments she’d managed to cave and make herself late for her appointment.
“So that just happened. At least I’ll have plenty to talk about,” Hastings said to the empty room. She grabbed her coat and purse and headed for the lobby.