Loose Ends

By MaxCale

Romance

What's Up Doc?

Thanks to jetlag Amy's internal clock was a little off so she was still awake at 7:30 when Ricky got up with John. Hearing him in the kitchen Amy went upstairs to shower and get dressed. She came downstairs in record time, a little anxious to begin her "quest." John, being his usual sunny self, smiled when he saw her. "Mama!" Amy couldn't help but smile as she walked over to him in his high chair and kissed the top of his head.

"Good morning sweetheart." John smiled and then continued playing with his breakfast. She turned towards Ricky with a smile that didn't reach her eyes and said good morning before making herself some toast. Ricky was instantly on full alert, prepared for the fight that was about to ensue about his sleeping around, but it didn't come. He tensely made himself some scrambled eggs and toast while Amy cut up fruit to go with hers. They sat at the kitchen table in silence while John gurgled happily. Half way through their meals Ricky was ready to get it over with.

"Are we gonna finish our conversation?"

"About what?"

"About me sleeping around."

"No."

"No?"

"No." She finished eating and Ricky stared at her in disbelief.

"Do you want me to take John to the nursery today for you?" he asked, since she obviously wasn't ready to talk.

"Yes, thank you. I'll pick him up tonight." She loaded her dishes into the dishwasher and then picked up the phone and dialed a number. Ricky watched her as he finished his breakfast, curious as to why she was making a call from the house phone instead of her cell.

"Hello, is Dr. Treacy available?" Ricky froze. Why was she calling a doctor? Is Amy alright?

"Amy?" Lauren responded confused. "Why are you looking for my mom? And why would you ask for her like that?"

"If she's not available I can call back later," Amy replied, not answering Lauren's questions. Ricky was still worried. Why isn't the doctor there? What if there's something seriously wrong with Amy?!

"She's here. Hang on. Mom!" Lauren's mother came to the phone moments later. "Hello?"

"Hello Dr. Treacy, this is Amy Jeurgens."

"Hello Amy. What can I do for you?" She didn't know why Amy was addressing her so formally and that alone piqued her interest.

"I need to have a rather personal discussion with. Do you have any time available today so that I can come by to talk to you?" Ricky was now very concerned. He knew 'personal' was probably code for 'lady problem'.

"If you'd be more comfortable coming here instead of my office then I will be home for the next two hours."

"Thank you. I will be at your home shortly." Amy hung up the phone and went to her room to get her purse. As she was about to leave the kitchen Ricky stopped her.

"Is everything okay Amy?" he asked with genuine concern in his eyes and voice.

"It will be," she replied, continuing up the stairs. Ricky checked his watch and saw that he needed to finish getting John ready and head to work. It was going to be a long day and it hadn't even started yet.

Lauren was around the corner from the kitchen shamelessly eavesdropping on her mother's phone call. Why is Amy calling my mom? Does she want a therapy session or something? Lauren's mother hung up the phone with a confused expression. She didn't know why Amy wanted a therapy session from her but since Amy had reached out for a reason she wasn't going to turn her away. She looked up and caught Lauren peeking around the corner.

"I know you heard my side of the conversation but I honestly don't know what she wants to talk to me about and once we do talk you know full well I won't divulge anything she tells me without Amy's permission. Now, don't you need to be getting to work?" Lauren frowned. Something was up with Amy, especially since she had obviously come home early. She'd just have to get it out of Amy after work today. Man did she hate working at the food court.

Ten minutes after Lauren left for work, Amy pulled into the driveway. Lauren's mother answered the door moments after she rang the doorbell. Feeling it was best to get right down to business, Amy was lead straight to Dr. Treacy home office. Once the door was shut and they were both sitting down, it was Amy who spoke up first.

"This is going to be more of an interview than a discussion."

"Alright. Would you care to tell me what this interview is about?"

"I'm trying to figure out how my life unfolded the way it has so I can make some changes and realized that before I can do that I first need answers to some questions."

"Okay. And where does this interview fit in?"

"I need to understand how I became inhuman to the people close to me." Dr. Treacy blood ran cold at Amy's reply. Not only because of the words she had spoken but because her face was unreadable, as though Amy was hiding something even while looking for answers. The psychologist in her knew she needed to turn this interview into an actual therapy session and the mother in her needed to know why one of her daughter's best friends was hurting so badly. But knowing Amy was only going to reveal what she wanted to reveal and when, she opted for professionalism and simply nodded for Amy to continue.

"Why did you allow your daughter to be my friend in the third grade?"

"The two of you got along well together and had bonded quickly."

"Why did my pregnancy change your view of me from a suitable friend to an unsuitable one?" Now she realized where this was going. She sighed and suddenly her psychologist mode became laced with motherly overtones.

"Amy, as a parent, when you discover that one of your children's friends is making bad decisions your only thought is to protect your child from that pattern of behavior and the potential negative consequences of their friend's decisions." She wanted Amy to understand that she was simply trying to protect Lauren, not hurt Amy. Too bad her explanation wasn't the end of this "interview."

"As a psychologist, are you aware that people make poor decisions and have lapses in judgment from time to time?"

"Yes," she replied, a little lost as to where this discussion was going now.

"Do you believe that people should wallow in their 'consequences' or attempt to make lemonade out of lemons and better themselves?"

"Yes, I believe that after accepting the consequences of their actions people should learn from their mistakes and move forward."

"Do you believe that a support system makes it easy for people to do so?"

"Absolutely," she responded confidently.

"Are some people's poor decisions more deserving of the benefit of a support system than others?"

"What do you mean?" Amy remained silent, waiting for an answer. Realizing Amy wasn't going to expound upon her question, Dr. Treacy had to think about the question for a moment. Suddenly she realized what Amy had just asked her, well, accused her of actually. By forbidding Lauren to talk to or spend time with Amy she had unknowingly stripped Amy of a piece of her support system during a time when she needed emotional support.

"Amy I never meant to hurt you or rob you of a source of physical and emotional support. I only wanted to protect my child." Before she had a chance to continue trying to apologize, Amy continued her attack.

"Do you believe your daughter lacks self-control or common sense, as a general rule?"

"What? No! Amy.."

"And yet you felt that upon learning one of her best friends was pregnant that the idea to have sex or become a mother in High School would instantly be planted in her mind?"

"Of course not, Amy. I…"

"Were you aware that after I told your daughter and Madison that I thought I was pregnant they blocked off one of the girls bathrooms at school and both waited with me while I took three different pregnancy tests?"

"No. I…"

"Were you aware that after all three tests told me I was in fact pregnant that your daughter's first words of advice to me were to go to a doctor to be sure and then to tell my parents?" She was stunned. She had had talks with Lauren about relationships and sex and knew her daughter was level headed, and what Amy had just told her was evidence of it. No wonder Amy was angry over her decision. Now she really needed to apologize to Amy profusely. Lauren had been a voice of reason as well as source of emotional support and her desire to protect her child had hurt someone else's.

"If you believed your daughter to have a good head on her shoulders and be un-swayed by the actions of her peers, why did I transform from an average teenager into one unworthy of your daughter's friendship simply by becoming un-expectantly pregnant?" She had no answer. She honestly hadn't thought about how her decision would be seen through Amy's eyes. Even though she realized she'd done Amy a disservice, why was Amy coming to her now? Amy sat in the armchair across from her silently. Realizing she hadn't answered, she simply hung her head for several moments, unable to face the young woman sitting across from her.

Raising her eyes she answered honestly. "Amy, no one is unworthy of friendship or support. You accepted the consequences of your actions and have become a wonderful mother and a strong young woman. I reacted to news of your pregnancy, unfortunately, like any other parent when instead I should've based my reaction on my knowledge of and relationship with you. You and Lauren have been friends since the third grade. You love each other like sisters and I know you didn't get pregnant on a whim. I can't undo what I've done to you, Amy. All I can do now is tell you that I've seen my decision through your eyes and understand how much I've hurt you. I truly hope that your friendship with Lauren won't continue to be strained because of me and that someday you will forgive me and learn to trust me again." Amy nodded in acceptance of the apology and stood up.

"Dr. Treacy, thank you for your time and honesty today. I'll see myself out." With another nod, Amy turned and left. She was almost to the front door when Jason came out of the living room heading towards the kitchen. She hadn't planned on talking to him yet but since he was here she stopped him.

"Jason, I need to ask you something and I would appreciate an honest answer, even if you know I'm not going to like whatever it is." He looked at her curiously but stopped to hear her question.

"How did you find out that I was pregnant?" Jason blanched for a second. By stopping he had agreed to answer honestly but you're not supposed to rat out your sister, right? While deciding how to answer his mother began walking down the hallway towards them.

"Tell her the truth Jason." Now he knew without a mental struggle to do as his mother told him so he did so.

"Lauren told me."

"Why?"

"She asked me what she should do to help you since you weren't ready to tell your parents yet but she knew medically you were supposed to be taking care of yourself since you were pregnant." Now it was Dr. Treacy's turn to blanche. Her daughter had not only offered her best friend sound advice but then turned to her brother, the future doctor, for medical advice for her friend.

"Did you tell anyone else what she'd confided in you?" Jason looked panicked. Lauren had told him in confidence, but he didn't keep that confidence. When he didn't respond his mother prodded him: "Jason?" No way out now.

"Yeah…..I kinda…said something…..in the locker room….to my teammates…when Jack started talking about Grace and Ricky." He looked at his mother and saw, to his surprise, anger and disappointment in her eyes. He looked at Amy and was actually scared when he didn't see any emotion on her face.

"Thank you for your honesty, Jason. Good bye." And just like that she walked out the door.

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