I could kneel against him, and take his face in my hands. His pale blue eyes were always washed out and tired, crinkled into a big smile for me, always for me, attention rapt as long as I needed him.
There's something not right about him. He's a robot. I mean, come on, princess, there's practical, there's efficient, indomitable, but he goes above and beyond. What is he doing?
Trying to take care of me, of everything.
He doesn't need to take care of you. Jacob's face is guarded now, defensive.
He still tries.
Why, Bridget? Just tell me why.
Maybe he's atoning for the past. I press my hands against his cheeks and he covers my hands with his and pulls them back down. He pulls me down into his arms. But he's not a robot. He's just...pragmatic. I didn't give him such an easy time when we were on the road.
But if he wasn't always that way then what changed?
Everything. My mood darkens. I don't want to talk about it.
I can't help you help him, if that's what you want to do, princess, if you don't tell me why he's this way.
I don't know why he acts the way he does. I think he's just still trying to provide stability and be my guardian even though I'm an adult now.
Not to him, you're not.
It irks the shit right out of me.
And you always cut the conversation off without telling me anything. I'm just supposed to accept that he's going to come into my house and lavish affection on my wife and it's not supposed to bother me because he's a robot in every other facet of his existence? Does that sound right to you?
Then I would venture a guess that you're remembering history as a child would and maybe there is more to it because adults always see things differently.
Maybe you're right. I don't know how else I can remember it.
That's just it, Bridge. You can't. And you don't have to keep secrets for him or for anyone else.
I'm going to go up and draw I think. I stand up and he wraps his arms around my legs and presses the side of his head against my belly. It gurgles. Always hungry.
Jacob laughs. How about we make some food instead? He is easy, jovial, but all through the construction of our midnight deli sandwiches he kept looking at me, waiting to give him all the answers that would help him to understand what makes Lochlan tick. And I was helpless in my ignorance. Had I said anything it would have been all wrong anyway.
I took a bite of the sandwich instead, and let a mouthful of food be what kept me from blowing everything wide open.