Honestly, I don’t know which of them is my father. It’s a tough choice. The guy in the bedroom, alternating before sniffles and laughing or the one here, at the table, making me peel cuties. He’s also telling me about how sailors used to get scurvy. I could make a joke about what happens with too many guys alone on a ship, but that’s not really funny, and it’s not really fair. I mean, he’s a dork, but he’s basically a nice guy.
I take another of the cuties. They’re at least relatively easy to peel. At least there’s that. And I like the way that they make my hands smell. But I’m about medium on the flavor. They’re not quite sweet enough to be like candy, and they’re not quite tangy enough to really be interesting. I guess they’re like Dave that way. Well, maybe that’s not fair.
William laughs now. That means that a cough or sneeze will come in a little bit. They’ve told me a few times that I should know that they both love me, even more than straight parents, because they had to try even harder for me. I know they don’t mean it to make me feel guilty. They mean it to show how much they love me. That’s not the only thing that comes through about it, though.
Dave is looking at me. He must have said something. I smile and tell him, “Sorry, I was just listening for a cough.”
Dave gives a small smile as well. If I’m showing affection, then I must be a good daughter. “He’ll be fine. It’s just a bad cold.”
“I know,” I say.
“The best thing,” he tells me, “is that we let him rest and recover, and we do so with minimal contact, so that we don’t get sick as well.”
minimal contact, he said. That’s the kind of thing that he says. I guess that opposites might really attract. William would say something like, “I’m really sorry that we can’t be next to him. I know it’s a drag, but, that way, when he gets better, we don’t have to be away from him”. That’s not necessarily better, it’s just a different kind of weird. Maybe if I only get the best parts of both of them, then I’ll turn out to be normal, like a well adjusted person. Which would be weird, I guess.
Dave repeats it. “Think we have enough cuties, Cutie?”
After half a second, I think that I shouldn’t want to be rude, but there’s no reason to pretend that I think it’s funny. An eye roll. It’s kind of a compromise. Maybe it’s what Dave expects. If it’s not, then he does a good job of not showing it. He just raises his eyebrows and pops a segment in his mouth. Me, I brush my hands and head away from the table.