Meeting Lizbeth - Chapter Two Part III
A Close Brush With Boarding School
No boarding school! Hooray! Lizbeth wanted to kiss her father and jump up and down but the look on her mother's face told her to act refined or she would go to boarding school. Boarding school really? Where in the world did that thought come from? Nobody went to boarding school anymore. Well, nobody that wasn't disgustingly rich anyway. She knew her parents were rich but not disgustingly like some of her classmates.
Maddy drove her to school every day, not the chauffeur. It wasn't that they didn't have one it was just that he didn't do all of their driving. He took Mommy shopping more than anything. Probably because she couldn't carry all her packages herself, Lizbeth thought suppressing a giggle. Really, Daddy even drove himself to work. She didn't know anyone who went away to boarding school. It even sounded funny when you said it. Boarding school, boarding school, any way you said it was bad. Imagine having a housemistress for a mother! Lizbeth was just happy Daddy said no!
It seemed Daddy was always on her side. He almost never agreed with Mommy on things concerning Lizbeth which was lucky for Lizbeth and she knew it. It was hard to figure Mommy out. She was nice enough, but not very cuddly or warm like other mothers. She was very pretty, but Lizbeth got the feeling she didn't like kids. Now that is just silly Lizbeth, told herself. You're living proof she likes kids. Sometimes her conscience talked to her to straighten her out when Daddy or Maddy wasn't around.
Maddy was the best. She was only a nanny, but she sure could be a Mommy. Lizbeth overheard a conversation between Maddy and her Daddy and it seemed they knew each other for a long time. Maddy was pretty, though not as pretty as her Mommy, but she had to admit Maddy was nicer. She wondered if they had a torrid love affair and it broke off. Who gave who the gate? She couldn't imagine Maddy letting her Daddy go.
Maddy Lost Tom
While Lizbeth was wondering about any love affairs between Maddy and her father, Maddy was doing some wondering of her own. She knew all about the Porters and their constant fighting. What a horrible life it must have been for little Louise. Boarding school wasn't any better and then to come home to her mother's horrible death. All of that would surely mess up any person. In spite of it, Louise always seemed in charge. She had a way of charming the boys and making them do everything for her.
Sure Maddy had a crush on Tom, who didn't? It wasn't just his good looks it was his winning personality. Tom genuinely cared about everyone and he loved children. He'd go out of his way to make you feel comfortable and if he thought you were hurting well then you were on his radar for constant attention. Growing up together brought the two of them close together. She knew Tom better than anyone else on earth. Well, she thought she did.
Their relationship grew over the years and when it was time for high school she felt it was their time. She thought for sure it would be Maddy and Tom. She didn't, however, factor Louise Porter into the equation. It seems he was totally enamored of those copper brown eyes of hers. Of course he felt sorry for her losing her mother in such an awful way. He started out just trying to comfort her and help her fit in in high school but Maddy saw the way Louise looked at Tom. She never looked at any other boy that way. Maddy knew the die was cast and it would be Tom and Louise.
“Maddy, she's just so beautiful and fragile. Like a flower you need to protect so it won't lose its petals” Tom said to her one day. He went on, “it's funny Maddy, I always thought it would be you and me but I realize now we're friends. We'll always be friends, but this is different. You understand right?”
Maddy truly wanted to slap him but instead said, “Of course Tom. I've seen you sick and beaten up, I've seen you when you're down and I've seen you when you're up. Who but a friend could stand by you?” She ached so badly inside but couldn't hurt the man she loved. It seemed the death of Louise's mother had sealed her fate as well.
A Talk With Maddy
“Maddy,” she said for the third time.
“Where were you?” Lizbeth asked.
“Just daydreaming little one. What's up?” Maddy replied.
“I have a deep question for you Maddy. It's one you can never repeat but only answer to me. Do you understand?” Lizbeth said.
“Lizbeth you know I never share our private talks, why would I share this one?”
“Well, it is super secret and I wanted to be sure you wouldn't tell anyone, ever!”
Maddy was a bit nervous wondering what Lizbeth wanted to talk about. She hoped nothing bad had happened and finally decided the best way to find out was to stop thinking and start talking.
“What do you need to know Lizbeth?”
Lizbeth looked down at the floor and in the lowest whisper asked, “Is Louise really my Mommy?”
Maddy's mind started spinning and she felt sick to her stomach. She had never lied to Lizbeth before, but she didn't think it was her place to tell Lizbeth the truth. She always believed they should have told Lizbeth from the start, but Tom refused. Her only recourse now was to lie to her beloved Lizbeth for the first time in ten years.
She asked, “Why would you even think a thing like that?”
“Well, first off I don't look anything like her and second she doesn't seem to like me. It's been making me wonder, especially when I see other girls and their mothers.”
That was a relief, Maddy knew she could waltz around that one without really lying.
“Louise is a special person Lizbeth. She's had a lot of heartache in her life and sometimes she seems like a hard person. Her parents had a hard time in this town and her mother's death hit her very hard and besides you do look like your father.”
Another truth that was stretching things a bit but necessary at this moment.
Did Grandpa kill Grandma?” Lizbeth asked innocently.
“Honestly Lizbeth, nobody knows. Both of your grandparents loved your mother and it is hard to think your Grandpa would do a thing like that. You know how gentle he can be.”
Maddy was getting nervous about this conversation and afraid she was overstepping her bounds.
“Yeah, I know but the kids in school say he did. They say their parents remember it and that Grandma and Grandpa were always fighting about money they didn't have. Why do people have to mind everyone else's business?”
Maddy thought this was a good time to change the subject completely away from Louise and her parents and was very happy Lizbeth was a ten year old. Ten-year-olds bounce from subject to subject in the blink of an eye.
“Lizbeth you know how nosy and gossipy people can be. Remember how everyone said you were going to boarding school when you weren't even sure yourself? They have nothing better to do so they start rumors or even make up complete lies. Now young lady its time for you to wash up. Dinner will be in an hour.”
Thankfully Lizbeth turned and headed toward the bathroom. Maddy knew these two conversations weren't over but at least she had time now to talk to Tom about how he wanted them handled.
Copyright Tillsontitan - All Rights Reserved
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