That morning Lowell awoke from a dream about his mother from his phone ringing persistently.
As he got out of bed he remembered fragments of the dream, a very unpleasant dream where he couldn’t save her from something terrible. He couldn’t recall what. He knew the dreams stemmed from his own bad conscience. What if his father really did toss her to the side, found himself a younger wife and restarted his entire legacy? She´d be devastated.
Lowell went to his parents rooms the minute his father left for work. He knocked.
“Mum, are you there?”
She asked him to come in, her soft musical voice as cheerful as ever.
Rosalie was sitting behind her desk, typing away as she often did. Lowell had no idea what she was writing.
“I need to speak to you.” He simply told her. Rosalie motioned towards the chair next to her desk, giving him a warm smile.
“How are you Lowell?” She asked. He sat, weighing his words carefully. There really was no easy way to say this.
“Father told me he would disown me and start a new family, should I not marry.” He blurted out, regretting the words as soon as they were spoken.
Rosalie looked at him, seemingly at a loss for words.
“I will go through with it, mum, but if I don’t marry at the end of it, he says he will leave you.”
“Did he really say that?” She grinned.
“He said he would marry another woman, it´s hardly something to laugh about!” Lowell said, worried his mother was losing her mind.
“You don’t really think that old fool would leave me, now do you, Lowell?” She asked. “He wouldn’t make it one day without me. Even if he did, it would do him no good.” She paused. “Your father can’t have any more children. When you were twelve, I believe, he was ill. After that he was sterile. He´s stuck with you I´m afraid.”
“So, you´re saying it was all rubbish?!”
“I´m afraid so. The legacy is very important to him, Lowell.” Rosalie said, giving her son an apologetic look.
“So, if I don’t fall for any of those women, and I don’t pick one to marry, he can´t disown me or leave you?”
“No, of course he can´t.” Rosalie sighed. “Lowell, we really want to see you settled, with a good woman, see you become a father. Is that so bad?”
“What if I´m just not the marrying kind?” Lowell countered. “I have no desire to marry, or to have kids, I don’t even want to ask anyone to go steady. I have other wants, mum.”
Rosalie didn’t answer at first. She got up, and so did Lowell, and after an awkward hug she realised even his thoughts were like a broken record. Her son had a one-track mind.
“I love you Lowell, me and you father both. We do want what is best for you.”
Lowell blushed. Affection was not often displayed in this house.
“I love you too.” He said.
Well, that was awkward.
“I need to be pampered.”
Lowell´s next step was to tell his father he accepted the offer.
“Excellent, son. I´ll see to the arrangements immediately.”
No one in Bridgeport have ever seen Lowell St. Haldemor Senior look this happy. Well, maybe except for Rosalie.
“I think I´ll whip out my emperor cane and go harass the world, I´m just so excited!”
Lowell found Samuel, Alistair and Melissa in the library downstairs. He told Samuel what his mother had said.
“It was nothing but rubbish!” he exclaimed. “That old fart is full of it.”
Samuel took a moment, considering.
“Oh, joy! Time to party!”
Lowell and Samuel went to Aquarius, a night club in down town Bridgeport. Lowell met Katrina.
To be fair, it´s best to lay down all the cards on the table.
“So, Katrina, how do you feel about commitment?”
“Well, I am single, but I hope to get married once I find Mr. Right… “
Yes, honesty will occasionally bring forth disappointment, but at least she hasn´t been led on.
“I think I need to go home and feed the cat. See you Katrina.”
Lowell doesn´t have a cat. But oddly enough, Katrina did phone him the following evening offering him a puppy. Perhaps she just wanted it to be clear she had not been fooled.