Part 1/7: Santa Claus is coming to town….
About: Walkers, Wandells, McCallisters, Harpers, Whedons, Holdens, the whole lot
Disclaimer: B&S doesn’t belong to me. Written with love, not for money.
Summary: On a boring Tuesday afternoon.....
“Oh, Janet, I’m so sorry I couldn’t be there for the funeral.” Nora sighs to her friend Janet, all dressed in black like a proper widow should. Janet pushes a hanky to the corner of her eye and Nora realizes how fake that movement looks.
“It’s alright, Nora, all my other friends were there.” She says, and Nora, in her mind, thanks Janet for rubbing it in.
“Oh, Nora, how long does this pain last?” Janet continues and Nora is tempted to reply that that depends on how many mistresses and illegitimate children crawl out of the woodwork, once your hubby is dead, but instead she takes Janet’s hand between her own hands and replies.
“Time heals all the wounds.”
As does yelling into the desert that your dead husband was more in love with a certain part of his anatomy, than with her. And throwing your wedding-ring into the ocean, because it turns out to be meaningless piece of jewelry. But Nora keeps her mouth shut. Janet is not the kind of ‘friend’ to who you can talk about these things.
“And how are things now?” Nora asks and the way Janet takes a deep breath, Nora already knows that she should NOT have asked that one question.
“Terrible. You cannot imagine the amount of questions you get to answer…. and the reading of the will. …. He left almost nothing to our son Andy ….” Which Nora applauds because Andy is a leech, who already got far more from his father than any other child.
“… and left a lot of money to Monique…” Again Nora applauds the decision. Monique and her wife Miranda led a small house that offered help to abused women and could certainly use the money. “Of course that money will be wasted on their little ‘cause’,...” she pronounces the word with disdain…
“…instead of on something good.” Like a new wardrobe perhaps? Nora thinks, because Janet, sweet as she is, is an airhead, who’s more upset about her color of lipstick being taken out of the shops, than by women who don’t even know if they will survive the next few hours. Nora sighs. Janet is unfortunately also one of those person in ‘society’ who matters and who knows how to attract people for fund-raisers and Nora needs Janet right now.
“But he left you with enough money?” she asks carefully. Janet takes another deep breath and Nora braces herself.
“I’m broke.” Janet says with a dramatic sob. Nora swallows hard. Damn! This is not what she needs. “There were debts to pay…. We … we had to sell our yacht and our apartment in New York.”
Nora shakes her head. She wonders what Scotty would have done with this definition of ‘ being broke’ and it’s Janet’s dramatics that makes her admire Scotty’s calm way of dealing with his past even more. He never made a fuss about it, never took advantage of Kevin and his financial position, but instead he worked very hard for every dollar. Focused and determined he became a head-chef and he’s doing so well at his work, as Kevin proudly continues to boast.
“You know what is even worse?” Janet asks. And Nora cannot imagine. “We were supposed to go to our house in the mountains for Christmas and now….. Oh, Nora, Frank is dead. Andy is angry and wants to contest his father’s will and he hates Monique and Miranda for ‘stealing’ his money and nobody talks to each other anymore.” She sobs and Nora has to admit that the scenario is familiar.
“Can’t you go alone? Just to get away from everything. Have a good cry. Get some energy back.”
“Nora, the house has enough room for 20 people. What will I do in a house that big… on my own?”
Good question. “We just had everything cleaned and ready. And now it will remain empty…” Janet sighs and a thought descends from Nora’s brains to her mouth in just seconds.
“Would it be something for my family? At least they still talk to each other.” Nora says gently, rubbing the painful comment from earlier right back to where it came from, with the sweetest smile on her face.
“Oh! Would you?” Janet asks astounded. “It would be so great. It would make me feel better to know the house is used. We loved the place so much, you know.”
“Well, if depends on how much you want me to pay for it?”
“Don’t be silly, girl. The house is there and ready and not going anywhere. But you have to bring your own sheets, blankets, towels, food etc.” “Oh, off course. I still have all the sleeping-bags from when we went camping.” Nora thinks out loud and Janet looks at her in horror.
“Sleeping-bags?” She echoes and Nora realizes that Janet would probably bring her best silk sheets and woolen blankets. And that something like sleeping-bags would be far too ordinary.
“Oh, just in case....” she therefore quickly says, happy that the waitress comes by to take their orders, so she doesn’t have to discuss it any further.
When, 1 hour later, Nora steps into her car, she is very satisfied with herself. She gave Janet a shoulder to cry on, got herself a nice big house to celebrate ‘Christmas in the snow’ in and she got Janet’s help with a fund-raiser for the end of January. Not bad for a boring Tuesday afternoon.
END OF PART 1