We decided to stay at a hotel.
Martina was still living with her parents, and her bedroom was stuffed with furniture from her and Rocco's apartment. She barely had room to get back and forth from her bed. Besides, it would be quite awkward to show up out of nowhere and stay a few nights, with people I hadn't even met before. Neither of us had talked to Rocco yet either, but throwing the truth in his face and then expecting to stay there afterwards was kind of heartless. Nah. I knew better than that. Therefore, a hotel room was the best option.
Not to mention that you can have sex undisturbed all night through.
"Good morning, beautiful. My hair is clean, but my mind ain't," I murmured when I saw my beautiful Bambi still laying on the bed, with lazy eyes and hair that spoke in volumes about what we did last night.
I'd just gotten out of the shower and gave her a mischievous wink. Instead of wrapping the towel around my waist, I'd thrown it casually around my neck, and I chuckled to myself when she bit her lip. I knew exactly what she was thinking. Unfortunately, I also knew that we were in a hurry, because I had to meet Rocco before he left for work. He had the late night shift at a theater, a job he had in addition to working as a logistical specialist, simply because he liked it. I think he had a secret dream to become an actor like the ones in the endless row of musicals. I hated those, but I'd still come to see him on stage.
Question is if he'll be too shocked to go to work after you've dropped the bomb. Hopefully not.
"You're going to see your boss?" I asked Martina, slightly curious. I still wasn't sure if I'd return to San Francisco alone or if she would come with me. I mean, we both had our jobs to maintain, and she had her regular doctor's appointments. Of course I hoped she'd do as I suggested, and continue that in San Francisco, but she'd asked for time to think and I respected that.
"At noon. I'm supposed to go to work at 5 pm, but I have to see my doctor at 3:40 pm, and we have to talk to my parents."
I saw her eyes flicker and she chewed on her lip.
"You're nervous?" I asked, even though I knew the answer.
"Yeah. I have a feeling it won't go very well."
I quickly put on a pair of boxers and a t-shirt, then went to hug her when she got up from the bed.
"I understand. But maybe they'll handle it better than you think? Unlike me, you actually have a close and loving family. I'm sure they'll be thrilled to know that they'll have a grandchild."
She gave me a half-shrug. Then my phone beeped, signaling that Rocco was getting impatient. Of course he was. It was the first time I'd come to visit him in New York, so I guess he'd already figured out that it had to be important. So I got dressed, kissed Martina goodbye and got a cab to take me to the right address. And I was right. Rocco seemed nervous as hell.
"I'm sorry the place is a mess. I'm packing up my things to get ready to move, because... Yeah, you know the rest," he said, and showed me the way to the couch.
"Want some coffee?" he offered.
"That's good, because I've stored it in one of those boxes," he chuckled, and nodded toward a whole stack of them in the hallway.
"How about a beer or some orange juice? I think..."
"No, thanks. I think I'll just cut straight to the case."
Rocco nodded and swallowed. Then he sat down and rubbed his hands on his thighs.
"First of all; remember that this won't change anything between us. This is not your fault at all, and what's done is done, and..."
"Please just say it, dad! What did I do that's so severe that you had to come all the way here to tell me? Is it because I'm bi? Maybe I misunderstood, but I thought you said that you supported me about that?"
"Of course I do. It's got nothing to do with that," I cut in, but he continued ranting with questions.
"Does it have anything to do with Marty, then? I don't understand what though, because I haven't done anything to h..."
"No, no!" I exclaimed a little louder, to stop him from thinking the worst about himself.
"It's just that..."
I took a deep breath.
"There are two things. First of all, Martina is pregnant and..."
"...the baby is mine, because..."
"What the hell?"
"...she took a test that showed..."
Rocco sat there with an open mouth, completely in shock. And the longer I paused, the more he seemed to freak out.
"Rocco? You're my son, but... we don't share the same DNA."
Rocco took a deep breath, and I could see the confusion and chaos of emotions in his eyes. Then he got up and paced back and forth a couple of times, before he sat back down. He shook his head and seemed to slip into a state of catatonia that I didn't like.
"Rocco? Say something."
"What's there to say, really?" he said, too calm for my liking, and his voice sounded cracked and hoarse. He kept staring in front of himself and randomly shook his head as if he tried to comprehend what happened.
"Is it Rupert?" he asked eventually, and I knew he was thinking of the amoeba being his biological father.
"I doubt it. You were three when Bree hooked up with him."
...behind your back. Whatever. It doesn't matter now. It never did.
Suddenly Rocco turned pale and his eyes widened.
"That makes so much sense," he whispered to himself.
"What makes sense?"
"Oh, my God..."
He suddenly got up and ran to what I assumed was the bathroom, and soon after, I heard him retch over the toilet.
What should I do? Should I leave? I'd never been good at handling shit like this. I usually just bolted out and ignored the problem. Besides, I wasn't sure if anything I said would help at all. Despite that, I stayed. And when Rocco came back into the living room, I tried to give him a hug, only to get dismissed.
"Look, Aaron... Or whatever I should call you."
"Please don't do that," I begged, a bit surprised at how much it hurt. We'd never been close until lately, but it didn't feel right that he called me by my name.
"This is... My ex-wife... We're barely divorced, for Christ sake! And then..."
He searched for the right words, but ended up gesturing with his hands. He looked so lost that I actually wished I didn't tell him at all.
You reacted the same way, Aaron. Give him time.
"I can't believe this," he said, exasperated.
"My whole life has been a lie."
"We're kind of in the same boat here. Do you think it was easy for me when I realized what your mother did? She trapped me, and she trapped me good. But do you know what? I did it for you, Rocco. I stayed in that marriage because I thought it was best for you, and no matter how we twist and turn this mess, nothing can change that you're my son."
Tears were pooling up in his eyes and a couple escaped when I continued.
"And there's one thing I've come to realize since I found out two days ago, and that is..."
I took a deep breath and noticed I was emotional too.
"I don't regret it at all. Do you hear me? You're a great boy and I'm proud of you and who you are, and I'm glad I can call you my son."
I finally got to hug him. A tight and long hug where he cried on my shoulder. Once again, I found it a bit strange to be physically near him, but at the same time it felt right.
"Does mom know that you've found out?"
I shook my head.
"No. I'm not sure if I'll ever talk to her again."
Not without beating the shit out of her, and I never laid my hands on women that way. Unfortunately for her, she wasn't a woman. She was a demon. But unfortunately for me, the law still defined her as female and would lock me up if I did what I truly wanted.
"You'll avoid her?"
"As if my life depended on it."
Rocco wiped his face with his sleeve and exhaled slowly to calm himself.
"Will you be okay?" I asked with concern, and he kind of shrugged and nodded at the same time.
"Yeah. But you better sponsor me with some good therapy, because this..."
We laughed, and I patted him on his shoulder.
"Just tell me if you want me to go with you. I'm getting good at that stuff."
I chuckled again.
"You've been to therapy?" he asked, surprised.
"Yep. For almost a year now."
It didn't help shit, but whatever.
"For being an ass. He gave up on me, though."
"That bad, huh?"
"I mean, why change perfection?" I snickered and pointed at myself. He knew I was joking and it seemed to help on his mood.
"But seriously. Just ask. And if you need someone to talk to..."
"Thanks. You're actually the only one who understands me."
We exchanged looks and I gave him a sad smile.
"I have to get going now. Martina needs to have her regular check up with her doctor, and I'm gonna meet her parents."
"Ooh. So it's the big revelation day? They're nice people, though. Nothing to be nervous about."
He got up together with me and followed me to the door.
"Perhaps. Although, I'm not sure how happy they'll be when they find out about my age, that I used to be her father in law and that I've knocked their daughter up."
"That... Is true."
Our eyes spoke more than our mouths did, and I knew he would be okay. Eventually. At least I would support him in every way I could, and that included the hardest part that laid ahead of us.
Especially that part.