I heard my son’s bedroom door slam. I closed the spreadsheet I was working on, got up from my desk, and walked into the hall. Kevin was standing there with a frustrated look. He’d been shut out.
Kevin was nineteen. For the last few weeks he’d been dating my son Andrew. I had learned this fact on Facebook.
I had to muster an effort of will to keep the expression off my face…. because Kevin was a babe. He had tousled brown hair, a sparkling smile, and the slim body of a champion cross-country runner. Right now he was wearing tight keans and a white American Apparel tee-shirt that hugged his fine strong torso like a coat of paint. It seemed like only yesterday boys Kevin’s age had all been wearing shirts that were too big for them. Thank god for changes in fashion...
“What’s up?” I asked.
Kevin blinked. For an instant I caught a hint of tortured humiliation in his eyes. The moment passed. “Uh, not much, Mr. Solomon.”
The kid was a good liar. But it was obvious the pair of them had just had a fight.
I felt unsure what to do or say. Kevin was a guest in my home and I wanted him to feel welcome. But I also felt I should be supporting my son. I decided to stall for time.
“Want a drink?” I asked.
“…Sure,” Kevin said. “Sure, that’d be great, Mr. Solomon.”
“You don’t have to Mr. Solomon me,” I said. “When I was your age I was already a dad. Just plain old Mike is fine.”
“Okay,” Kevin said. “Mike, then.”
He got ahead of me and went down the stairs to the kitchen, his bare feet leaving discolorations on the white carpet. Really, this house was much too big for just Kevin and me. But Kevin’s mother and I had split up just as the economy had started collapsing, and so far I had been unable to sell it.