Two of a Kind Part 11
After breakfast Eleanor sent Melanie to brush her teeth and get dressed, she marched over to the telephone and picked up the telephone to call Tom. Abruptly Eleanor slammed the phone down without dialing. Why did she feel like she was back in junior high calling Richie Stevens to go to the spring tolo dance? Stupid— with a capital S—a red capital S—a blinking red neon capital S.
“I wouldn’t be doing this, if it wasn’t for Melanie,” Eleanor muttered as she started redialing the telephone. I’m a grown woman. It’s not like I have any interest in him as a man. I’m flushed because it’s too warm in here. As soon as I finish this call, I’m flicking the thermostat down.
“Hello, hello,” said a female voice.
Bloody Hell! This was a major mistake. I just knew there had to be a woman in his life. This situation has hop scotched from Stupid with a blinking red neon capital S to Embarrassing with a blinking red neon capital E. Back up the truck, this is about Melanie not about me. A film of sweat formed on her brow.
“Sorry, I was distracted. Is Tom home?” said Eleanor.
“Yes, just a minute please. May I tell him who’s calling?”
What? This woman screens his calls? Isn’t that a bit possessive? “Tell him it’s Eleanor about Melanie.”
“Hi Eleanor, is something wrong with Melanie?” said Tom.
“No, no everything is fine. I wouldn’t be calling you at home on a Saturday and you probably have other plans, but Melanie asked so I am. Calling, you know like she asked me.”
“Hey that’s fine. You can call me any time. Does Melanie want to talk to me?” asked Tom.
“No, well yes, well not really.”
“Okay,” said Tom slowly.
Eleanor took a big breath. Reality check, this is not a flashback replay. I’m not asking him to go to a tolo dance. “Well here’s the deal. Melanie is feeling a bit scared about moving to her new family in a couple of days. To make the most of today and to put off thinking about future tomorrows, we cooked a great breakfast and I suggested going to the zoo. As it turns out, Melanie has never been to the zoo. Can you believe such a thing? “
“No, I can’t. That’s not right, but it’s an easy fix” said Tom.
“Rootie toot toot make a mark on the calendar, I’m glad we finally agree on something,” said Eleanor. “So we are going this afternoon and Melanie asked me if you could go too. “
“Shoot Eleanor, I can’t. I’m tied up today,” said Tom.
Much to her surprise Eleanor felt a surge of disappointment and flash of junior high embarrassment. Get real, it was to be expected. He was probably ‘tied up’ with the female who answered the phone. “Bummer. Melanie will be disappointed.”
“However, I’m glad you called. I need to talk to you. A home has been found for Melanie. I think you’ll be pleased. It’s a husband and a wife. There are only four other children in the family. Plus here’s the real bennie. Even though private school isn’t an option for kids in foster care, this family lives in a top notch school district. However, the spot doesn’t open up will Tuesday. I know you were planning on going back to work on Monday, but is there any way you could take another couple of days of vacation?”
“That’s great,” said Eleanor hollowly sitting down slowly. “It’s no problem to take another couple of days off.”
“Oh there is one little glitch,” said Tom. “Melanie can’t bring Porter.”
“What! That’s ridiculous. No. No. No. You’ll have to find another home. Not being able to take Porter is a deal breaker. You might as well drive a stake through her heart. What were you planning to do with Porter? Ditch him at an animal shelter?”
“Eleanor, be reasonable. Yes, it’s an imperfect solution. However in reality it’s far far more perfect than either of us could have expected.”
“What about Melanie’s expectations,” hissed Eleanor? “Have you even considered that?”
“Miss, what’s wrong?” said Melanie, who had walked into the living room unnoticed by me. “Is Porter going somewhere?”
“Nothing, honey,” said Eleanor. “Tom and I are just talking.”
“Tom, I have to hang up now. Again the answer is no and that’s final.”
The look on Melanie’s face gave new meaning to a breaking heart—-hers and mine.
Eleanor grabbed Melanie’s warm little hand. No thinking now, not my with emotions reacting like bucking bronco. Time to regroup. “Come on, Honey. Let’s bake a cake before we head out to the zoo. Baking Rocks!”
To be Continued: