Chapter 1: The Call
Brian was in his element. Today was going to be a good day, the people at Minecroft Pharmaceuticals were in the bag. That’s Minecroft not to be confused with Minecraft which was what his husband, and his daughter had been referring to for the last month. He knew he could do this, the stars were shining down on him, nothing could ruin this day.
“Brian, your sister is on Line 2.” Cynthia voice announced over the intercom.
“Tell her I died.” He replied.
“She sounds upset.”
“Cynthia, what on earth makes you think that telling me she’s upset would make me want to answer her?”
“I think something happened to your mother, she’s not calling from her home that’s why i didn’t automatically ignore it. The call came from Pittsburgh General.”
Brian released the intercom to take a moment to compose himself. He didn’t have time for this today, he had been in the zone to take down this presentation, not to mention his joints were killing him and he didn’t care what his husband said it was not a sign of old age, and now he had to deal with this shit. Well Joan better be dying.
“Put her through.” he jabbed the intercom angirly.
“Jesus Brian, why did it take you so long to answer me?” Claire demanded.
“Hello to you too Claire, what is it that I can do for you today?”
“Brian I need for you to get here quick, it’s about mom.
“She stopped being my mother the day she told me God punished me for being gay by giving me cancer, she stopped being someone i could tolerate when she refused to come to my child’s christening.”
“How is Pepper doing?” Claire asked sweetly.
“Don’t make me realize that i tolerate you, what is happened to the warden now?”
“She died Brian, mom’s dead.” she added.
Justin was getting more and more excited as he walked around his offices. He had done this, well not just him, he and Michael. The world was changing, and if they didn’t make the Rage Movie so what, he could make it himself, and be unapologetic about it. After a long talk and a little backing from Brian, Rage Animations was born and today he was officially a boss.
“Has it all sank in yet?” Daphne asked.
“Hey, what are you doing here?” he asked hugging his long-time friend.
“Are you kidding? My best friend opens his first office ever, where else do you think i’d be? Why didn’t you have a launch party? Where’s Brian?” she asked looking around.
“Brian had a big presentation that he had to do today, and we’re going to have a proper launch party this weekend.
“A launch party after you open, how interesting, although that explains why you guys want me to take Pepper this weekend. You’re going to get into naughty activities and you don’t want a kid around.” she giggled.
“Yes, but come on you wanted to have her this weekend anyways, so it’s best to make the most of it.”
“You’re right i did. I’ve been missing my sweetie with my internship picking up, but i’m not going to let my career keep me from being a mom I can do both.”
“Exactly and you’re a great mom, she loves you, but I need you and Brian to please stop calling her Pepper that’s what you name a dog.”
“Aww it’s adorable like her, she’s spicy like a Pepper. Speaking of I better go and pick her up from school, i’ll have her at home by seven. Congrats, and how are you so organized on the first day?”
“Oh that would be my assistant Bianca, she’s a lifesaver.”
“Oh really? Well i’m going to have meet this Bianca next time, i better go, give Brian my love.” she kissed her friend before leaving.
It didn’t take Brian long to find his sister. She was the woman in the waiting room with two demons sitting on either side of her. She was more distraught than she should be. There mother had died of either natural causes, or alcohol poisoning, but they were grown people. She was in her fifties, she shouldn’t be crying like this. Her children should be crying like this if she were dead, but no she was crying as if Joan had been hit by a bus.
“Get a hold of yourself, people are watching!” he shouted taking her by the arm.
“Brian mommy is dead!” she lost the little bit of composure she had left, and threw herself upon him.
He wanted to fling her off, but he saw that some people were looking at him. He was sure how he would console her in her time of need. He was going to be a total monster. Claire loved Joan, and well if Debbie died he would want someone to console him.
“It’s okay Claire. She’s in a better place now, what can i do for you?” he asked knowing immediately he would regret it.
Justin was trying not to, but he couldn’t keep the smile from forming on his face. He had his own business. He was going to have his on animation for the world to see. He just hoped he didn’t seem to arrogant.
“You’re not.” Bianca his assistant stated.
“Are you sure? I mean to have all of this and i’m not thirty yet, I don’t want them to think that i used Brian. That’s one of the things that i have feared the most that they would think that he’s some kind of Sugar Daddy and I-----”
“Breathe Blue, you have nothing to worry about. You got here based on your talent. Rage was going to be a fucking movie a few years ago, and that didn’t go through, with how the world is changing now the internet was the next place to go. With all the streamers out there, Rage is going to be an International hit.” she beamed.
“Tell me again why i hired you?” he joked.
“You saw something in me. I’m not sure what it is yet, but you said that it was something that you wanted to mold. I’m down for it, i mean you are amazing. When i was taking your class, and learned how you got so talented after being bashed. You are a fantastic artist, i’m thrilled to be your assistant. I would do anything to be here. Why i would’ve had sex with you, I mean you’re hot.”
“Do we need to take a step down to HR, and talk about Sexual Harassment?”
“No, i know that you’re off limits. So can i treat you to lunch boss?”
“I don’t know, i mean what would i look like leaving when everyone haven’t even found their offices yet?”
“LIke the boss, lets go.”
“Okay, but i’m going to have to call Brian, maybe we can get him to meet us there.”
He should have known asking his sister what he could do to help her was a bad idea. Now she was somewhere picking out a coffin to put their mother in, and he was here at the house. It was weird being in her things, he had done this for his father, but this was different. His mom always had everything in just the right place. If you went in her stuff you had best put everything back as you found it our they’d be hell to pay. Now he was trying to find the perfect dress for her. He was going through the dresses, but then something caught his eye.
His mom had always had this box in the top of the closet that he told him never to go in. He remembered when he was younger, and she had caught him with it, and it was like she had caught him with porn. He still remember the scar that he had on his hip from when she knocked him into the dresser as she snatched it away. Now would be the perfect time to open it up. He noticed that it was even heavier now than it was then. Today would be the day that he solved that mystery. After he took this call.
“Hello, how do the offices look?”
“They look great, but it’s missing something. I’ll get Bianca to help me figure it out.”
“Aww the world best assistant, well next to Cynthia, what are you two up too, i predict that you are no longer at these offices.”
“She dragged me away to have lunch, join us?”
He could feel that sunshine smile beaming down on him from the other side of the telephone. He would kill to be able to be there right now, but he can’t.
“Sorry Sunshine, i can’t do that today?”
Justin could pick up immediately when something was on Brian’s mind and he knew that something wasn’t right with his partner.
“Brian, is everything okay?” he asked concerned.
“No, mom died.” then he dropped the call.
Brian knew that he would pay for that later, but the whole time that he had been talking to Justin he had been going through the box. He was shocked that it was filled with letters. Letters to his mother from a Shara Cross. Who the hell was that? Was his mother a secret lesbian? He had to read at least one:
You never returned any of the letters, so I’m guessing you are at least reading them. Joan you were a good friend to me, and it will take me forever to apologize for Jack and I did. When i met you that afternoon and whenever you spoke of your husband I always expected some kind of monster, there was no way to know that it was my Jackie you spoke of. He was always kind to me, and when he said he loved me I believed it. I still do, but I understand what had to be done. That’s why i’m indebted to you. You did something that any other woman in the situation would have never done, and for that I thank you. I saw your daughter, she’s quite lovely, and your son…..he really does favor Jack a lot. He’s becoming a grown man soon, you think maybe you’d tell him about us sometime? Maybe not, I know you think that it’s not true, but i really do love you Joan, always have and I always will.
“Fuck!” Brian shouted to a quiet room.