He took Becca at work to impress Susan.
She half-smiled. "He's being a wise-guy now." To Paul, she said, "Like when we go out for dinner? Don't say how I always burn them, Mister, I already went through this with Jim."
Paul had a big smile, even though she had ruined his joke. "She does, too. That's why we got the grill, the smoke alarms kept going off inside!"
"Humph, you are the king of exaggeration, Paul. A real riot!"
It was good to see them get along so well. Poking fun is another way of saying I love you, and Mom and I did it often.
The steaks were a big hit, along with a nice salad, and store-bought, home-made, potato salad and macaroni salad.
The sun set and it was time to go, but Lynn said, "I was gonna put coffee on, and Paul, it's past your time anyway."
Paul said goodnight and she poured coffee, offering an after-dinner cordial. I had Anisette and she chose Sambuca.
"Paul really likes you, I can see why."
"Oh, thanks, he's a great kid, really, reminds me of me at his age."
"Really? That's funny, except for the height, you could pass for father and son...a very young father for his age!"
I smiled. "I was the same height at his age. Come High School and I shot up six inches in one year."
"Good, I hope he does, too. Not that it matters but, between you and me, he got his sports prowess from me, not his father, poor kid!"
"I was always the last kid to be picked, so I can relate. I guess that's why the parents of the good players don't want them on my team, because I try to share playing time. They're all just kids, it's supposed to be fun for them, we get serious soon enough."
We sat, the candle burning on the table, and she poured another.
She said, "Seems like the bugs are out now. If you like, we have a finished basement. We can adjourn down there, unless you're in a rush."
I was in no rush at all.
I followed her in and down the stairs that led to the bathroom I had used. The larger room contained a pool table, bar, cable TV, a great little man-cave.
She closed the door so we wouldn't disturb Paulie, two floors up. "Rack them up, if you like, I'm not very good at pool, this was my ex's playroom."
I did, and she broke. She was right, about not being very good, and she commented on how well I was doing. "The product of an ill-spent youth," I waxed, poetic.
When she shot, her back hand was moving all over. I bent across from her and said, "No, like this, back and forth."
She shanked the next shot and said, "Oh, I'm just uncoordinated."
"Lynn, if I can play pool, anybody can. it's all angles. Basic math. Let me show you."
I stood next to her, and said, "Hold it like this," showing her how the cue stick rested in my fingers.
I took her left hand and placed it on the felt, then formed it in the proper manner. "Now the other hand." I reached around her, grabbing the handle behind her back, my body making contact with her back. "Now, just try going straight back with the cue, and forward, don't have the back end swimming around."
She leaned forward, concentrating, and in that motion, her ass came in contact with my pelvis, and we both froze. I said nothing, then she said, "You mean no wiggling.... like this?" and she jiggled her ass against me, and I jumped in surprise.
She turned, covering her mouth, and burst into laughter. "I'm so sorry! When I get nervous, I make jokes, and when I felt you, and you just stood there... You jumped so high!" and she was roaring now.
I could only grin. I had jumped like a jolt of electricity had passed through me, and my grin turned into a smile, turned into a laugh.
'You're a very different person, Lynn, and I mean that in a good way. I see Paulie gets his sense of humor from you, too!"
She put her hand on my chest and rested her head against it, still laughing. "I haven't laughed this hard in... a long time! I feel like a kid again! Thank you, Jimmy, for being there for Paul, and for being here tonight."
Without thinking, as she rested her head on me, I put my arms around her shoulders, and now when she looked up at me, I was holding her, close, to